5 Reasons to Replace Manual Inventory Tracking
Change may be hard, but more often than not, it’s for the best. Without change, we reach a point of stagnation, complacency – and when we become comfortable in a place such as that, the likelihood of mistakes increase. Complacency leads to a false sense of security, which sometimes works out fine, but other times produces major disruptions. When applied to business, the concept remains the same.
In the 21st century, businesses failing to keep up in the ever-growing, technology-centric, dog-eat-dog world of capitalism find themselves cast aside. A common unit of business where complacency thrives is involved with record keeping – not the most exciting part of a company, but one of the most important. By law, most industries require record keeping, especially in the medical and pharmaceutical, food and beverage, auto, and financial industries. Shockingly, a sizable percentage of businesses still rely on manual inventory tracking – a method lingering from the last few centuries, but a method surely to become extinct for most industries in this lifetime.
Replacing manual inventory tracking offers reliable audit trails
Internal or external, for financial purposes or a recall, when and if an audit is administered, it’s exponentially better to have reliable records than to not. Audit trails allow investigators or accountants to build a chronological reconstruction in attempts to answer the question at hand. With paper records stored in different filing cabinets and sometimes misplaced into other files –providing a chronological reconstruction when needed can be difficult or not possible at all. Electronic record keeping through an inventory management system allows for a secure, reliable trail with little to no human error.
Replacing manual inventory tracking means true metadata
Metadata – time stamps, dates, access permissions, and other specific details – alone means nothing, but in context of related data, stands as fact and lends protection. With manual record keeping, adding a date and time are no-brainers. Where things become sticky is when there’s potential for multiple people, perhaps unauthorized, handling or even changing records. Mishandling of important records leads to confusion and corruption of data, and turns a problem with a simple solution into an administrative meltdown.
With electronic inventory management systems, administrators can create permissions, allowing only certain users to access certain data while also recording each individual who opens the data, when, and any changes made. Recording these minute details by the brains of a machine versus the hands of a person, businesses facing an audit, recall, lawsuit or simply trying to maintain reliable records, can rest easier.
Replacing manual inventory tracking promises better protection
Simply put, replacing manual inventory tracking with electronic record keeping provides significantly more protection in the face of uncontrollable events like fires, tornadoes, a burst water pipe or burglary. When storing records electronically, documents and files are in the cloud, in servers or both. This being said, nothing is completely infallible and maintaining a reliable back up system is crucial. Having electronic records, along with a regular back-up in place and any manual records placed into storage – just in case – offers businesses the best chances of protection during unexpected events.
Replacing manual inventory tracking ensures data integrity
As stated before, nearly every industry requires record keeping and for those records to be in-tact, reliable, and accurate. The first step in any lawsuit is to illicit records from the opposing party in an attempt to prove innocence, negligence, etcetera.
When no records or poor records exist, trouble is imminent. The first step in any recall is to follow the data trail. Without the right data readily available, a number of consequences follow. When manual inventory tracking is the premier solution, wasting time and money is a likely event when called on to provide information. While it is possible to maintain accurate records via a pencil, paper and a clipboard – data integrity will inevitably diminish either by aging, potential unauthorized changes, or simply human error. Electronically managing inventory and business leads to more complete, consistent and accurate data.
Replacing manual inventory tracking allows simplified storage and improved access
Perhaps an obvious reason, but when manual records move to an electronic system, so does the physical storage facility for those records. Instead of bulky file cabinets lining your office and intruding into other’s space when flung open, the only necessary component for accessing an electronic storage system is a computer. Even better, when an electronic record system replaces manual inventory tracking, files can be located quickly and easily by everyone authorized to do so, regardless of their location.
Acctivate as an automated inventory management solution
Acctivate is an inventory tracking and business management software solution with powerful features and capabilities to streamline operations and grow small to mid-sized businesses.
With Acctivate, data integrity and reliability are possible with detailed metadata, chronological and historical data tracking, and all information securely stored in one easy-to-access place. Whether conducting a routine audit, handling a recall, responding to a lawsuit, or simply managing daily business activities and transactions, Acctivate users can access documents and files easily, quickly and conveniently.
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