Managing inventory for cash flow and profit

For manufacturers and distributors, effective inventory management is not a new concept. Balancing stock levels so as to be able to satisfy customer demands without building up excess slow-moving stock is always a challenge, especially for FMCG and seasonally affected businesses.

Overstocks cost money to store and track and hit profits when cleared at reduced prices.

Use software to track trends and manage stock movements, in real time

By using business intelligence software to link up and cross refer all data sources into a single relational database, you can rely on the algorithms in the system to alert you to sudden or unexpected movements – including stagnating sales.

View current and historic data to spot changing stocking patterns

If the software is also linked up to historic sales and inventory data then it becomes very simple to overlay current trends and sale patterns on the equivalent data from previous years. The combined data will give you a powerful indicator of what may be unfolding for the current year.

Equipped with the right data you can have full visibility on best and worst performing goods over any period. Tracked daily or weekly you can respond to trends immediately, focussing your sales efforts on top performing goods and moving out the non- performers.

Group and filter inventory data to uncover hidden trends

With all of this data performing as a single data set, you can group and filter against any number of metrics to interrogate events as they happen. Perhaps for the first time, not only do you have a completely clear picture on inventory status, you also have confidence in the data presented to you. Likewise you can have confidence in your decision making process.

How do you choose an inventory management system for your business?

With lots of business intelligence software on the market, how do you choose what’s right for your business?

For example, dashboard products are great for giving an overview of inventory positions, but typically they won’t allow you to slice and dice the data behind to establish exactly why something has occurred.

Self-service business intelligence software is essential

Even if you have little or no expertise in data, you will want to be able to challenge the data for yourself – quickly and easily – without relying on someone else in the business to do it for you! To achieve this, you need to ensure the software is self-service and easy to use.

Your own data analyst on tap whenever you need help!

Even with self-service software, you will probably also find it very helpful from time to time to get advice on the best reports for your business or which pieces of data are likely to get you the answers you are looking for- and that’s a specialist job for an experienced data analyst.

At illuminis we have many years experience in helping our clients get the most out of our Octelas business intelligence software. [link to Octelas]. When you work with us, you don’t just get excellent easy to use software, you also get your own dedicated data analyst who will be by your side throughout. Free of charge. You can call or email to get help and advice, including making adaptations to your system (at no extra cost) to enable you to get best use for your business.

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