An online inventory management solution is different than a desktop solution because it is accessible via Web browser and/or app for mobile devices while a desktop one is only accessible on a PC with the software downloaded onto it. This distinction makes the online option easier to maintain, access, and put to use in your business than pretty much any other option for managing your inventory. Let’s explore five benefits you can expect from using online inventory management, and we’ll also discuss which one might be most helpful for you.
Benefits of Online Inventory Management
There are many benefits that come from using online inventory management instead of manual or desktop systems. Some of these include the fact that you can:
Enjoy the flexibility of being able to take it anywhere you go on your smartphone, tablet, or other mobile device.
Give the right people in your company access to it via individual usernames and passwords.
Avoid maintenance and other IT costs because your inventory data is safely stored offsite.
Never have to bother with manual software updates because they are done for you automatically.
Use your own hardware so you do not have to purchase new mobile devices, but can make do with what you already have.
These deserve a closer look, so let’s go ahead and delve into each of them in greater detail below.
Take It Anywhere
This is a huge benefit to your organization because it means that you and your employees are no longer limited to a single desktop computer to access your inventory data and make changes to it. Instead, warehouse workers can bring a smartphone or tablet with them as they walk through the warehouse and use it to scan items in and out when receiving new orders from vendors and picking items to fulfill sales orders from customers. This offers flexibility that was unheard of in the past. If the warehouse manager is out of town at a trade show or on vacation, he can still access the inventory solution and make key decisions from a long distance.
A big problem with Excel spreadsheets and other manual inventory management systems is that they do not have adequate security measures in place to make sure that only authorized personnel can gain access to sensitive inventory data. Online inventory management solves this problem by giving certain employees login credentials. In fact, you can even use audit trails in each of the modules of the online solution to track changes made by the employees so you will be able to reverse any possible mistakes and make sure you know who is responsible for each decision made and order placed.
Nothing to Maintain
Expensive software and hardware usually require a big investment of money to obtain, as well as a hefty price for information technology staff members to maintain all of them. However, when you shift a lot of that responsibility over to a third party, you wind up saving a lot of money on maintenance costs. Data storage, security, and other important tasks are taken care of for you so you do not have to spend a lot of time and money on them. Those are definitely important jobs, and they should not be taken lightly. It is just nice that you can let experts handle them so that you can get down to business and focus primarily on what you do best.
Anyone who uses inventory management software or other desktop solutions knows that every now and then they will be called upon to update to the latest version of the software. This can be a process that is both time consuming and fraught with risk, especially for those who are not the most technically minded. But the good news is that online inventory management does not require manual software updates. Instead, those changes take place automatically while you are logged out, and then the next time you log in you will simply find new features and other improvements. This takes a load off your shoulders and lets you simply enjoy the benefits of new software updates without any of the usual hassle that comes with them.
Bring Your Own Hardware
We already touched on the fact that hardware, such as barcode scanners, heavy-duty tablets, and other devices for the warehouse, can be quite costly to purchase. Online inventory management is different. In this case, you can make use of preexisting devices instead of buying new ones. Sure, you might still need to buy label printers that are compatible with the solution, but other than that you have a lot of flexibility in the types of hardware you can use. Keep using what already works for you, and as long as you have an Internet connection, it will most likely work just fine for you.
An Online Inventory Management Solution for You
Boxstorm Forever Free is the first free online inventory management app and solution to integrate with QuickBooks Online. That is a huge deal. Linking your inventory and accounting files together is a great way to save time and ensure their accuracy. Sign up for a free account with Boxstorm Forever Free today to see if it is a good fit for your business.