With globalization, people can now buy products from anywhere and have them delivered quickly. It means the supply chain needs to be fast and efficient. Inventory management is crucial for supply chain efficiency. If each part of the supply chain effectively handles incoming and outgoing inventory, there will be no issues meeting the demand for inventory from end users.
Inventory management can only be done with paper or spreadsheets. The new tech solutions are called “Inventory Management Software”. It is gaining attention for effectively managing extensive inventories in various locations such as warehouses, manufacturing hubs, and retail stores. Learn all about this software and how it is revolutionizing the industry.
What is Inventory management software?
Inventory management software helps businesses optimize inventory transportation costs and mitigate internal and external inventory-related risks. The software automates inventory management processes such as planning, purchasing, and monitoring. It also provides real-time visibility and comprehensive analytics on inventory levels and costs.
Key project steps: The critical steps for the project are:
- Requirements engineering and design
- Project planning
- Solution development
- Data migration
- User training
- After-launch support.
Team: The team comprises a project manager, a business analyst, a solution architect, UI and UX designers, front-end and back-end developers, and QA engineers.
Time: Developing a custom inventory system takes approximately 9 to 13 months.
Types of Inventory Management Software
There are different types of inventory management software available.
Businesses vary in their preferences and needs. Different types of inventory management systems/software are available to meet your preferences and needs. There are three main types of inventory tracking systems used in various organizations.
1. Inventory Management System
There is a manual inventory management system in place that uses minimal technology. Currently, humans manually handle inventory tracking tasks, including counting logistics. This manual process increases the likelihood of errors. Small and local businesses use manual inventory management systems because they have fewer logistics to handle and can be managed by the human workforce. Human errors are cheaper than an automatic inventory management system of this size.
2. Perpetual Inventory Management System
This system automatically tracks inventory costs and stock levels for each transaction. The product’s cost is automatically updated as it goes through different phases of its lifecycle. The perpetual inventory management system keeps track of everything, such as stock items, storage locations, slow-moving products, and expiration dates, and helps maintain the best reorder level. Store owners always have sufficient inventory stock. Big businesses and firms use the perpetual inventory management system because they deal with a lot of inventory daily and can’t afford any mistakes.
3. Periodic Inventory Management System
A periodic inventory management system combines manual and perpetual methods to manage inventory efficiently. Inventory management is commonly used in businesses that only stock products for sale. Physical inventory counts can happen weekly, monthly, or yearly, depending on what the business requires. Tracking items individually or per transaction needs to be done, which increases the likelihood of errors. Additionally, tracking inventory movement could be more efficient, making it more difficult to calculate the cost of goods sold (COGS).
Features of Inventory Management Software
Here are the key features the inventory management system should have:
|Reorder Alert||It keeps track of product quantities in the warehouse and alerts authorities to order more before running out.|
|Inventory Listing||It helps manage stocks more efficiently by syncing information like cost, availability, and SKUs.|
|Asset Tracking||It helps owners keep track of products in a warehouse or store using a barcode, tracking number, serial number, or radio frequency.|
|Reporting Tools||It helps stakeholders in report creation and distribution. Order history, transaction records, and stock reports are accessible.|
|Inventory Forecasting||It manage your inventory effectively, preventing shortages or excess stock. This ensures your business stays profitable and productive.|
|Barcode Scanner||Warehouses and stores use barcode scanning to monitor inventories. Owners can quickly count and monitor product levels.|
|Accounting Tools||It include various accounting tools for overhead allocation, cost layering, disclosures, measurements, and more.|
|Raw Material Tracking||It focuses on manufacturing materials to save labor costs and helps make alternative and material ordering decisions.|
|Automatic Re-ordering||It allows store or warehouse owners to set a minimum inventory limit. The quantity will be reordered automatically once it reaches the minimum limit.|
|Multi-Location Support||It can handle stocks from multiple stores and warehouses.|
|ERP Integration||Eliminating data re-entry in various apps saves time with ERP integration.|
|Shelf and Bin Tracking||An inventory management solution counts inventory and provides the exact location of items in a large warehouse.|
|Real-Time Tracking||Managing inventory across warehouses takes time and effort. It helps you get the same outcome quickly and perfectly.|
|Expiration Date Tracking||It can track expiration dates and notify owners when products are nearing expiration.|
|Logistics Tracking||The new feature of inventory management software is integrating third-party features, such as transport analytics and tracking.|
Latest Technology Trends Integrate Inventory Management Software
Inventory management software has revolutionized how businesses handle logistics and keep track of incoming and outgoing goods. And the advancements in this field are going strong. New technology trends are making the system more advanced for a better user experience. Keeping up with technological trends is essential for enhancing the capabilities of inventory management software.
1. Artificial Intelligence
Predicting future product demand and making decisions based on those predictions can be a game-changing strategy that boosts sales. Artificial intelligence helps estimate product demand by analyzing past product data. Artificial intelligence helps prevent inventory shortages by automatically placing orders when items reach the minimum quantity the store owner sets.
2. Machine Learning
Humans spend a lot of time doing repetitive tasks, which can lead to more mistakes. An inventory tracking system with machine learning is highly efficient. ML helps customers find products using voice search and predicts future inventory needs. It also notifies stakeholders of any supply chain disruptions.
Blockchain is a platform that keeps information fair and unchangeable. It is decentralized, meaning no one person can alter the information. Using accurate and agreed-upon data improves the reliability of the inventory tracking system. In addition, blockchain enables parties like warehouses, manufacturers, suppliers, and retail partners to easily connect and share information in real time.
Inventory management software can now work together with drones, making it easier to manage inventory. Drones can scan warehouse inventory and send the data to management software. Inventory management software makes it easy to perform both quantity and quality inspections of logistics.
How to Create an Inventory Management System
The effectiveness of inventory management software relies a lot on its development. Here are the main steps for developing an inventory management software project:
1. Understand the Requirements
To start, it’s essential to clarify your needs for the inventory management software. Every business has unique needs and requirements, so inventory management systems are designed to cater to those specific needs. Determine if it will be software only or if it will also support barcode/RFID. If you need to integrate ERP, CRM, accounting systems, etc.
2. Project Planning
Create a blueprint to help you reach important goals throughout the project’s lifespan. The project blueprint should include risks, objectives, KPIs, mitigations, and expected outcomes. During this phase, we discuss the technologies to be used, evaluate and break down the costs, and determine the expected timeframe for the project.
3. Inventory System Development
It is the phase where the project’s core development takes place. To achieve this, you should hire a software development partner who can handle all the coding and technical tasks involved in building the software. The partner will create a prototype and send it for review. After stakeholders approve the prototype, the development team codes and creates the software’s backend. After developing the software, the quality analysis team tests it to ensure there are no bugs and that it works well.
4. Third-Party Integrations
Integrating third-party tools takes inventory management software to a new level of usability. You can integrate the new inventory management software with your existing warehouse software, application, ERP, CRM, accounting system, or any other system you use. This software makes it much easier for warehouse owners to handle tasks because they don’t have to transfer large amounts of data between different locations.
5. Deployment of The Software
The software is now ready to use in the warehouse or store. We will configure the software to ensure a smooth backup and data recovery process. Once the requirements are met, the software is deployed for real-life testing operations. After the software meets the expected performance and outcome, it is permanently deployed in the system for functioning.
6. User Training
Once the software is installed, the stakeholders need to know how to use it. Software users are trained to use the new system and update information promptly. It ensures that you can use the software to its full potential in the company.
7. After Launch, Support and Maintenance
Deploying software is just one step. It also requires ongoing support and maintenance. If users report glitches or any function is not working correctly, Support will communicate to the development team for improvements.
Inventory Management Software Development Cost
Businesses focus on making money, and when using this software, the cost of implementing it is a big worry. An inventory tracking system or software costs depend on certain factors. To ensure these factors, the development team can communicate the estimated cost. Let’s take a quick look at these factors.
- The more features you want, the more it will cost to develop the software.
- The cost of your software development is determined by the type and complexity of its features.
- The development team’s location affects their hourly charges for services.
- The number of hours the development partner spends on software development affects the final cost.
- The design of your software will also determine the cost of development.
- Choosing to have long-term after-support and maintenance will add additional costs to the bill.
- The integrations you want in your app from third-party sources will affect the cost of developing the software.
1. How much is the cost of inventory management software?
The cost of creating an inventory management software depends primarily on your specific needs. Your development cost is influenced by the features you choose, the number of resources required, the testing method, and even the UI components. To get an accurate quote for developing your inventory management software, it’s best to use our expert consultation service. They will help validate your ideas and requirements.
2. What services do they offer with inventory management software development?
Inventory management software offers a range of professional services to help ensure the success of your inventory management software development. It includes idea validation, creating a minimum viable product (MVP), app/web development, UI/UX services, testing, and re-engineering services.
3. How long does it take to develop inventory management software?
The time it takes to develop your inventory management system depends on your requirements, just like the cost. If your inventory management software has advanced features and complex algorithms, it will take longer than a solution with a mix of primary and advanced features. They provide a consultation service to help you validate your ideas and determine the time needed for your project development.
4. Does inventory management software provide services after the launch?
Yes, they provide post-launch services to assist clients with software updates. It includes:
- Data migration
- Platform migration
- Feature addition
- Maintenace and support
- Cloud integration services
The supply chain has changed due to higher demand for products and services in various markets. The logistics exchange has grown too big for pen-and-paper calculations to be accurate. Inventory Management software is a helpful solution for keeping track of items, even when there are thousands of boxes in the inventory. You can use Inventory management systems in retail stores and warehouses. They help keep track of essential details such as inventory quantity, expiry dates, reorder requirements, inventory location, availability of raw materials, and product demand forecasts.