How Does Inventory Check-In Work?

How does inventory check-in work? That depends on what kind of system you’re using to track and manage your inventory. Learning the ins and outs of inventory management requires time and experience. Before you make a commitment to any product, it’s vital that you understand its features as well as its limitations.

Generally, an inventory management system will allow you to check in an entire SKU, but not each individual product in that SKU. Let’s say, for example, that you have 1,200 duffle bags to check in. You’d enter those 1,200 duffle bags as a one-time entry. You can’t enter each individual duffle bag into your system, assigning each a number, and then access, say duffle bag #479.

Inventory check-in is one aspect of what is certainly among a company’s most important functions. In a nutshell, the term inventory management describes the entire lifecycle of either a company’s products or the particular components of those products produced by that company. The volume of inventory you keep is so crucial because it represents money tied up, pending a sale. Your inventory represents one of your biggest assets, and if it stays on your shelves too long, it’s costing you money – not just because it’s not selling, but also because you’ve got to insure it. Inventory that sits on warehouse shelves too long ends up being sold at deep discounts, or it can also become outdated – again, meaning lost revenue.

Inventory management, then, describes a very fine balance between carrying just enough inventory to maximize your profits and keep your customers happy, and running out of stock prematurely, which will almost certainly cause you to lose customers. It’s important to note that your target quantity today may not be your ideal quantity tomorrow. Every organization experiences seasonal variations in demand. So a good inventory management system empowers your company to track vital information, analyze trends, predict changes and prepare accordingly. If you’re overseeing multiple locations, you’re probably looking for a solution that enables you to zoom out as well as zoom in, so you can gain a deeper understanding of your inventory needs across your organization. You also want a means to track and manage your inventory that allows you to bring every single stakeholder into the conversation. Communication gaps, after all, result in guesswork and errors.

The less hardware and other components you have to manage to track your inventory, the better. Streamlined is the only way to go – in other words, you’ve got to go mobile. Asset Panda offers the easiest, yet most powerful inventory management system on the market, hands down. Everything about the inventory management process – from inventory check-in to tracking values to analyzing data, making seasonal adjustments and issuing reports – takes place in the palm of your hand via Asset Panda’s free iOS and Android apps. These apps sync with the cloud and include a mobile barcode scanner, effectively eliminating the need for additional hardware, software or expensive software licenses. You can add as many users as you’d like at no additional cost, and Asset Panda couldn’t be more intuitive – your employees and business partners won’t need any special training to become acclimated to this powerful, user-friendly tool.

Here's a look at how one company used Asset Panda's mobile app to track its signage inventory:

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Courtney Roush

Courtney Roush is a freelance writer, editor, and communications strategist with 25 years of experience. Her favorite discipline is crisis communications – and it’s a highly relevant one in our present times.

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