Top inventory management tips from Toronto’s Frank Monte

Inventory management can be extremely time-consuming and frustrating, but it’s an essential part of keeping customers happy and your cash flow moving.

Frank Monte is the head buyer and inventory manager of Brands Gone Wild – a Toronto-based retailer that offers bargains at wholesale prices. He’s been in the industry for years and has mastered keeping things in stock and keeping his customers happy.

“I have some good best practices for managing inventory to streamline your process, take stock of your company’s financial situation and stay on top of your business decisions,” says Monte.

Maintain your quality control

Whatever size of business you have, you have to make sure that someone is constantly checking the quality of products when they arrive. Morning rush hour isn’t the best time to open the last sack of coffee and find out that all of the beans are spoilt. Quality control on arrival saves time and money later on, as you can fight any fires before stocks are running low.

Automate your system

Look for inventory management software that specifically suits your needs and makes running your business easier. The right software helps you control costs and keep track of inventory – and it provides you with real-time data at your fingertips. Tracking your stock manually otherwise eats up time and can lead to errors.

“We live in a digital age, and while it may be tempting to stick to what you know, in business, you have to adapt,” says Monte.

Stay well stocked

You need enough stock to supply your customers, but you also don’t want to be sitting on an expensive surplus either. Set up automatic reordering on popular items that you routinely tend to run low on. It’s also worth doing manual inventories every month or so to make sure the automated system is accurate.

“Having the proper systems in place will ultimately help you avoid errors. Don’t be afraid to shop around to find the one that’s right for you and your business and definitely don’t settle on a product just because of the cost,” says Frank Monte. “At the end of the day, making sure your business is able to run at optimal levels will more than likely give you the returns that you’re looking for.”

Categorize items

Itemized stock control helps you gain a better understanding of which specific products are consistently selling out. Inventory management tools can even send you alerts when certain items are running low. Just set yourself a threshold and it should let you know when you need to reorder.

Invest in your employee’s training

By investing in proper training for all of your retail employees, you can ensure that proper inventory management is being held accountable by your entire team. By having a clear understanding of the process and empowering individual responsibility, you can have a better, streamlined course of action in terms of keeping proper track of your inventory levels. Providing comprehensive training on how to spot errors in inventory upkeep and maintain accurate stock. Also, it’s important to note that in regulated industries, proper inventory management is necessary in order to meet compliance standards and pass audits. Training your employees on inventory control procedures ensures adherence to legal requirements, industry standards, and internal policies.

Use data to help forecast demand

You probably have a pretty good feel for what type of products are popular with your customers, but utilizing sales data from previous years, months, or even the last few days can help paint a very clear picture of where your business is making money. It also gives you the information you need to help set up effective promotions and sales based on your surplus stock.

“Keeping an eye on the numbers is the best way to indicate where you stand with your business,” says Toronto’s Frank Monte. “It’s all a numbers game, so ensure you’re regularly keeping up with what’s doing successfully and where you can create opportunities to move inventory.”


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