Though it might not be the foremost concern in the minds of most retail business owners, the truth is that a lot of profit and loss can be determined by how you handle your products before they ever hit your storage shelves. The better you manage your storage, the better your chances of reducing loss due to spoilage, missing items, and the like. Here, we’re going to look at solutions that can help you reduce that loss.
Know where every item is
If your main concern is in making your retail business more efficient, then when it comes to storage, a digital inventory system might be precisely what you need. Most of these inventory systems run in cooperation with barcode scanners. When you scan a product, the inventory system makes a note of it, as well as where it’s stored. As such, when you need to hunt down a product, you can find it much more easily in the stockroom. Furthermore, it tracks item numbers, so if a loss happens, you can pinpoint what was lost.
The spoilage problem
If you have any kind of organic or foodstuffs, you need to be aware of what kind of storage it needs in advance. For instance, you can make use of brining or cooler temperatures to keep fresh meat fresh for longer. If you find where to get brine, it can not only prevent spoilage, but it can be used to help fuel refrigerating systems, making it doubly efficient. The same goes for making sure you any produce is transported with preservation in mind. There are cooled trucks, for instance, that might cost more to run, but are essential for some foods and organic goods.
Loss prevention is about security as well
Though we might not like to hear it or think about it, employees and other people with access to the stockrooms can be a source of loss. For that reason, you need to also think about how well you’re securing the storage environment. For instance, it may be worth installing CCTV cameras or log-in systems simply to be aware of who is with the inventory at any time, so that if suspicious loss happens, you can at least be aware of who the suspects could be.
Be aware of administrative error as well
Believe it or not, loss might not always be reflected accurately in the inventory systems that you use to track it. A simple missed stroke of the keyboard, for instance, could be an administrative error that makes it look like a high-value item has gone missing. These errors can add up over time to make it look like you have more of a problem than you do. The more automated your inventory system is, the less risk of human error impacting the results.
The more efficient and organized your storage solutions, the fewer products you’re likely to lose. Hopefully, the solutions above give you some idea on how to improve your own storage, too.