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How Stock Control Softwares can Help With COVID-19

Posted: June 08, 2020 by Ly Phan

How Stock Control Softwares can Help With COVID-19

The ongoing pandemic has changed the world as we know it. Businesses and supply chains have been disrupted beyond imagination. The fact China shutdown between January and March this year was unprecedented in itself. The global spread has caused widespread panic and huge upheaval in personal lives. However, warehouse managers need to keep cool heads and use stock control software to mitigate the worst effects.

The full impact of COVID-19 on global supply chains will not become clear for some time, but indicative figures are starting to emerge. For example, industrial production in China fell by 13.5% across the period of January and February year-on-year. The world economy is also expected to go into recession, led by double-digit falls in Europe and the United States.

As the world begins to regain control of the pandemic, there’s little doubt the economic consequences will linger. The dynamics of supply chains and warehouse operations will change, with innovation and technology leading the way. 

 

Stock Control Software

In uncertain times, stability can be invaluable. As supply chains around the world face unprecedented challenges and disruption, the software can help warehouses retain control over their inventory. In doing so, companies will have the flexibility to adapt to the inevitable changes brought about by COVID-19. 

The role of stock control software is to help managers keep track of inventory, both within the warehouse and outside. For example, being able to monitor stock levels in real-time can help managers quickly intervene if supplies are becoming limited. With the widespread disruption caused by pandemic, it would not be surprising if some sources run low. 

The role of stock control software is to help provide a complete picture of inventory management, giving managers full control over the operations of their warehouses. As supply chains evolve rapidly, the software provides real-time visibility that enables companies to adapt quickly and efficiently. In this post, we will determine how SmartTurn’s solution can help your business get through the COVID-19 crisis and beyond.

 

Automated Processes

Although many countries are emerging from extensive lockdowns, the reality is that social distancing is here to stay. For many warehouses, this will mean operating with a reduced workforce to adhere to the rules. Therefore, the drive towards automation is accelerating with businesses making investments into technology and software to automate processes.

To illustrate the last point, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said the company saw “two years of digital transformation in just two months” up to the end of April 2020. 

In terms of WMS and stock control technology, a variety of warehouse processes can be automated, including:

  • Stock Level Monitoring: An essential aspect of inventory control is maintaining optimum levels of stock. SmartTurn’s cloud-based software can monitor stock levels in real-time and can alert workers when individual items dip below a set level. This takes out the need for time-consuming daily audits.
  • Pick and Pack: Using RFID technology, workers can quickly locate and pick products from shelves. The automated locating of those items can save significant time and resources, which will be at a premium for many warehouses. By speeding up the pick and pack process, companies can become more efficient and productive, leaving room for future growth.
  • Integration: One of the core benefits of utilizing cloud-based stock control software is its ability to integrate with different platforms. For instance, integrating accounting with shipping systems can ease the process of checking completed payments before delivery. The value of successfully integrating different processes can be seen in both speed and accuracy.

As a whole, automating warehouse operations have led SmartTurn’s clients to improve inventory accuracy from 91% to 99%, cutting costs, and increasing profits. Embracing automation during the pandemic could be the key to business survival.

 

Optimization and Planning

Though technology can be used to aid the processes behind stock control, it’s essential to plan and take a proactive approach to optimize warehouse operations. Using the analytical power of SmartTurn, managers will be able to spot potential flaws within systems and optimize existing processes.

For instance, stock control software can be used to identify optimal routes and layouts. By utilizing the data and analyzing the time it takes to pick and pack products, managers will be able to minimize the time it takes to fulfill each order. The idea is to make small gains each time, which will lead to a significant cumulative effect, providing extra capacity for company growth.

Additionally, data can be used to provide information on trends such as peaks of demand, seasonal sales, and weekly purchasing behavior. Each of these trends has an impact on stock levels. Being proactive and taking the time to research will leave your business better prepared to deal with inevitable changes. 

In short, it’s critical to be proactive in using the software to maximize its potential. One SmartTurn client used our cloud-based solution to identify supply chain efficiencies leading to savings of up to $15,000 a month. By optimizing warehouse operations, managers have the opportunity to be more flexible and robust at times of crisis and to grow from them.

 

Diversify the Supply Chain

Alongside automation, another key theme that is emerging from the pandemic is the need for diversified supply chains. Though cargo and goods transport has been less severely affected than for passengers, no doubt securing international supplies has become more challenging. As factories around the world locked-down and reopened at different stages, companies have started to source products from multiple suppliers.

The advantage of using multiple suppliers lies in the robustness of such a solution. The idea is to avoid being over-reliant on one or two suppliers, particularly in similar geographic areas during a crisis. However, managing those relationships and keeping a clear line of communication with different trading partners can prove challenging.

With SmartTurn’s inventory management software, warehouse managers will have a complete picture of supplies in real-time. This helps to reduce the risk of unnecessary excess supply or stockouts, as well as to have the opportunity to find the best-value source for products.

 

COVID-19 - An Unprecedented Crisis

In this extraordinary time, it’s vital for companies to remain calm and cut through the panic to focus on maintaining a healthy business. The factors involved in the pandemic are unique. Social distancing, disruption to supply chains, changes in customer demand - to name just a few - each present a particular challenge for warehouses.

With SmartTurn, managers can easily access stock control software in real-time to meet those challenges. The cloud-based solution gives warehouses options to deal with COVID-19 with flexibility and robustness.

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