Organized Entrepreneur: How to Organize Your Supplies and Inventory

When you own your own business and do not have a large staff, organizing your supplies and inventory could consume a lot of your time. By setting up an effective system of inventory management, you can spend more time focusing on your business. Follow these four tips to simplify the entire organizational process.

Apply Tracking Tags or Stickers

Tracking tags, such as radio frequency identification tags, make it easier to track your inventory. The tags can be linked with an alarm system to prevent theft. No business owner wants their merchandise to be taken without proper compensation.  Minimizing theft is incredibly important when running a business. You might also want to consider the use of a bar code or QR sticker system for your products that are for sale. You can scan the stickers with your smartphone and an app designed for this purpose. The information will go into an inventory database.

Use Storage Bins

Storage bins simplify the process of organizing business supplies and inventory. They come with or without lids, allowing you to stack them on top of each other. Choose translucent or clear bins to see what is inside without opening them. Some companies, like Quantum Storage, know that if you have items that could be harmed by sunlight, choose opaque bins. Adhesive labels can be applied to the bins for organizational and inventory purposes.

Rotate Inventory and Supplies

Rotating your inventory and supplies could be arduous, but it is necessary. This is very important to make sure customers are satisfied with a fresh, clean, undamaged product.  Older products and inventory should be used or distributed first so they do not become out-of-date. New supplies and inventory should be stored behind older units. You may need to do a quarterly inventory check to ensure that older products are getting used within a reasonable amount of time. Rotating your stock is one of the main steps you must consider when running a business.

Implement a Database

If you have a lot of supplies or a considerably-sized inventory, consider the use of a database or electronic tracking system. You could set up a system that alerts you to items that need to be used up. That way, everything is streamlined and you can save time when ordering and stocking new items. This information could also be used to offer special deals to your customers so that your inventory does not expire. Making your business run smoother is a goal you should also have in front of you, no matter how successful you are. This determines whether your business has staying power or not. A database also makes it easier to know when to make your next order of supplies and how much of which item to order.

These four steps work for supplies and inventories of any size. As your business grows, an electronic system of managing everything will make your life more productive and convenient. Consider a variety of software solutions and apps that can help you to manage bins and individual items. You will spend less time counting and moving things around and more time growing your business and boosting your sales.


Rachelle Wilber

Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area.

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