At a time when inventory is in short supply, knowing exactly where every product is located at any time is imperative to the success of all pool and spa businesses. The best way to avoid costly inventory control mistakes common to manual systems is to implement automated pool and spa inventory management software. With an automated software inventory control system, pool and spa businesses will improve inventory control, increase profitability, and maintain sanity in our increasingly fast-paced business environment.
As those of us in the pool and spa industry know, every summer pool and spa businesses fall victim to inaccuracies in inventory that can lead to thousands of dollars in lost profits. The busy summer season invariably leads to sales staff who give products away, service professionals who grab products from store shelves, and office staff who forget to track warranties. By ditching manual inventory tracking systems and taking the time to implement automated spa inventory management software, pool and spa businesses can stay on top of every filter, pump, trichlor tablet, and brush available for servicing or selling to your clients.
The most important thing pool and spa inventory management software can do is integrate your inventory system with that of your vendor suppliers. Specific pool and spa business software programs offer complete, pre-programmed inventory control systems that communicate inventory levels in real-time using vendor integrations. These pool industry integrations allow you to check vendor orders, status, and available inventory before even placing your orders.
Real time inventory is one of the most powerful and profitable metrics for any business. For example, targeting inventory dollars to the department or product types with the highest gross margins can increase profitability. Your business software should provide owners and managers the inventory control information they need to make smart business decisions. But the software is only as good as its inputs, so be sure you get buy-in by everyone in your organization and systems in place to ensure all information is accurate.
The beauty of having pool and spa specific Point of Sale software is that it automates inventory management control systems in many ways. These software programs offer quick and easy inventory reports designed to provide pool and spa retailers and service companies the inventory information they need to make important marketing and purchasing decisions. Additionally, in this unusual year of product shortages, using an inventory software system that integrates with your POS system allows you to access purchase history to guard against clients hoarding products needed to satisfy all customers.
Harnessing the power of mobile devices allows your business to have up-to-the-minute inventory information that can make or break a sales or service job. By using mobile-live module features within your pool and spa inventory management software, you can give staff a handheld data collector or even use a smartphone or tablet with a mobile-live system, allowing them to capture every unit of inventory even as it’s unloaded from a delivery truck.
In fact, the best software programs include an Inventory Adjustment module that imports inventory lists from a pre-existing software system or from your local distributors and suppliers – even from Excel spreadsheets! These software tools will help manage cycle counts, tighten logistics, and provide renewed control over your inventory. Best of all, as soon as that inventory has been accounted for, sales staff can contact clients and service departments can immediately dispatch technicians with the items they need to get the job done and keep clients happy.
Now that virtually all business software is mobile, be sure that you have an inventory control management system that is accessible to all employees through their mobile devices. This system empowers business managers and employees to quickly see where a product is located. Mobile Live Retail and Mobile Live Service control software apps reduce stress for sales employees trying to help customers as well as service professionals trying to complete a job.
Using mobile devices to track inventory can help create incentives for employees to make inventory management a priority. For managers, having a snapshot of all areas of the business from retail to service and construction provides data to implement new marketing campaigns, make smarter purchasing decisions, and change the course of the business — whether it’s a response to competitors, a shift in the market due to weather, or a larger event like the change in consumer demands because of the pandemic.
Keeping clients happy despite product shortages and long lead times has become the challenge of 2021. As a result, it has become imperative to make inventory a priority both for profitability as well as to ensure customer satisfaction. If you start with accurate inventory and maintain it with software, then you are well on your way to taking control of your inventory.
In order to maximize the benefits of having a real-time, accurate inventory, it’s imperative to have an automated pool and spa inventory management software system in place before the start of the next season. Don’t fall victim to inaccuracies or be overrun with frustration, missed sales, surprising shortages, and lost income. Start now and be ready for the 2022 season..
Rachael has been active in the Pool & Spa industry for over 20 years, which has provided her with an all-encompassing expertise in the industry. Rachael worked at a local pool store while pursuing her Master’s degree at the University of Pittsburgh. Possessing the technical skills & Pool industry knowledge, she joined the launch of RB Retail & Service Solutions in Pittsburgh, PA in 2003. Rachel can be reached at email@example.com.