Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Managing inventory

Dedicate positions for managing inventory. Make sure you have control of which employees are affecting your inventory. This is especially true in manufacturing operations where the priorities of machine operators and production supervisors are meeting the production schedule, keeping the machines running, and ensuring the quality of the product being produced. Inventory accuracy will never be a primary responsibility of these types of positions. Once you come to this realization, it is easy to see the benefits of putting your inventory and material handling responsibilities in the hands of people whose primary responsibility is inventory. Also, within your material handling/warehouse positions you should limit the people doing miscellaneous type inventory adjustments.
Storage Areas will also affect accuracy. Crowded unorganized areas become "black holes" for missing product. Crowded areas also cause increase damage to product that is often disposed of without inventory corrections being made. High-density storage makes it very difficult to accurately count the product. Maintaining proper lighting, shelf and product labeling, and organization makes it easier to stock, pick, and count product thus increasing levels of accuracy.
The more you know about how your specific inventory system works, the more successful you'll be in optimizing its features.
(c)Dave Piasecki

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