According to the Motorola Solutions Future of Warehousing Survey, which polled warehouse IT and operations professionals on the state of warehousing today and their vision for the future, warehouse technology investments are predicted to rise. The survey revealed that approximately 66% of respondents plan to automate their inventory processes with new technology solutions within the next five years.
For today’s manufacturers, maintaining accurate inventory is vital to profitability. However, the process of doing an extensive physical inventory count every year is both time consuming and expensive. It is no longer effective or efficient to close your business at year-end, round up all your employees and physically count inventory. Instead, many manufacturers are reexamining the important role technology can play in the warehouse in order to reduce costs, drive differentiation, and grow profits.
New technology solutions, such as modern ERP manufacturing software, utilize solutions like inventory cycle counting to automate the entire inventory process. Instead of doing one physical inventory count at year-end, cycle counting can be performed at regular, pre-determined intervals throughout the fiscal year. This provides real-time visibility, improved accuracy and reduces the need for physical inventories. Now manufacturers can easily plan material purchases or verify the availability of products for sale with both efficiency and accuracy.
Key benefits of ERP cycle counting include:
- Accurate inventory ensured throughout the year. Not having to wait until year end to know what your inventory is really worth.
- Quicker and more accurate counts with the use of hand held bar code devices.
- Minimal disruption. Cycle counts can be performed without shutting down any of your day to day activities.
- Greater flexibility. Counts can be performed as many times as necessary and different categories of parts can be counted at different intervals.
- The need for one major year-end physical inventory push is eliminated, saving time and money.
- Real-time inventory visibility allows for instant access to inventory on hand balances and “available to promise” information.
A successful ERP cycle counting program begins by focusing on the root causes of your inventory inaccuracies by product type (raw material through finished item) and desired level of customer service (95-100%), and then working with your ERP software vendor to deploy a cycle counting application that resolves these inaccuracies. As your cycle counting program evolves, your accuracy will also evolve until your count exactly matches your inventory on hand.
Advances in ERP manufacturing technology are rendering physical inventory a thing of the past. Today’s manufacturers need real-time inventory visibility. They are saying goodbye to physical inventory processes and investing in modern ERP systems that utilize cycle counting technology.