Are the supply chain disruptions driving you crazy yet? Delays, spiralling freight costs, changes in consumer demand – it’s a real headache. And it seems that these issues will be present for quite some time yet.
In response, you’re probably spending more time than ever on inventory planning, to avoid lurching between overstocks and understocks.
But when you’re making stock calculations manually on spreadsheets, it’s not only time consuming, but you’re also probably second-guessing your calculations. After all, there are so many variables and scenarios to consider. Being proactive about your inventory planning is difficult, when it seems like you’re always on the back foot.
There’s another way – and it could save you up to 20% of your inventory value
Specialised inventory planning software is a must for businesses with over $2m in stock. Whether you’re an importer, wholesaler, or retailer – getting your inventory levels right-sized is business-critical in these times.
Inventory planning software integrates with your accounting system and unlocks the business intelligence hiding in your inventory data. Harnessing this business intelligence gives businesses hungry for success the ability to break through growth barriers, and out-plan unpredictability through inventory optimisation. The goal is to free up your working capital, by up to 20% of your inventory value, so you can re-invest it in other parts of your business.
What does inventory planning software actually do?
Here are four important ways that inventory planning software can boost your business:
1. Inventory optimisation
Easily report on your current inventory valuation; create and measure against your inventory KPIs in a dashboard; and review recommended actions on the SKUs that are important to your business growth.
Just think: no more manual data gathering or painstaking spreadsheets!
Even better, the software automatically creates a matrix of product importance, based on the sales value and sales velocity of all your SKUs. You’ll even be able to see the top five SKUs related to each of your KPIs so you’re aware of the lines that have the biggest impact on your business.
2. Precision forecasting and demand planning
You’ll be able to build accurate forecasts with predictive intelligence. These forecasts are dynamic and factor in the supply risks in today’s environment.
What-if planning allows you to model different scenarios to see what impact they’d have on your business.
The inventory planning software even calculates supplier risk metrics so you can evaluate supplier performance, optimise buffer stock levels, and mitigate supply risk.
You can plan in so many different ways: by SKU, sub-SKU attributes, channel, customer or region, location, units, currency, cost, or any other measure. This lets you create reports and plan on whatever frequency suits your business: for example, weekly channel forecasts. Or daily product forecasts. Whatever works for you and your team.
And because the planning is so much easier, you can plan further into the future – and with more confidence.
3. Quick and confident ordering
The inventory optimisation software creates auto-generated orders that you can place with one click. And because the system classifies every SKU by sales value and velocity, the order queue is prioritised in terms of business-criticality.
The ordering process also anticipates supply risk and delays in real time using AI. It even factors in minimum order values, and can strategically fill containers to optimise your shipping costs.
4. Sales and operations planning
The dynamic nature of the inventory optimisation software means that a central source of truth is created. This allows confident decision making throughout your business, so your operations and supply chain is aligned with your organisation’s sales, marketing, and financial strategies.
Next step: find out more about inventory optimisation
Contact Empower Business for a free one-hour consultation to see how we can help you with your inventory planning and optimisation.