Why learning inventory management is important for a supply chain analyst
Any company's inventory consists of a complete list of items like the stock of goods, property, or contents. It is often considered the most vital asset for that company. And inventory management is where all aspects of the supply chain system merge; therefore, a thorough understanding of inventory management is a critical requirement for a supply chain analyst.
A deficit of inventory during needed times might lead to dissatisfaction among customers. On the other hand, a surplus of stock would also cause issues. Proper care must be taken to prevent spoilage, theft, or damage, adequate insuring, etc.
Large companies with highly complex supply chains ought to strike the right balance between keeping too much and too little inventory. One can achieve this through detailed analysis, learning, and inventory tracking by the supply chain analyst.
What is an inventory management system?
The entire process of ordering, storing, tracking, and using inventory throughout the supply chain is called an inventory management system. While previously only very rudimentary methods for inventory management were used, such as spreadsheets, manual order placements, and hand-counted stock records, now it has been replaced by advanced tracking software.
It is also certain that in the future, with rapid innovations in the field of Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, blockchain, and quantum computing, supply chain operators will continue to transform the inventory management system drastically.
How does inventory management function?
The primary goal of inventory management is to ensure that the right product is kept in the right place and delivered at the right time. This entire inventory tracking, from manufacturer to warehouses and then the sale, must take place efficiently. For that to happen, inventory management has to abide by three fundamental steps.
1. Purchasing inventory: ready-to-sell goods are directly transferred for storage in the warehouse or given up for sale.
2. Storing inventory: goods and materials are stored until required. At a later point, they are transferred into the fulfillment process and made ready to sell.
3. Profiting from inventory: the amount of output available for sale is regulated, and finished goods are held in the inventory for a period, which increases the value and thereby adds to inventory profit.
Inventory management for supply chain professionals
Effective inventory management can significantly facilitate the flow of goods and services between businesses to their respective customers- the primary responsibility of supply chain professionals. Supply change management also includes the warehousing and movement of raw materials, work-in-process inventory, tracking of finished goods, and order fulfillment from the point of origination to the final sale. Below is a list of features of inventory management that greatly helps supply chain analysts and professionals achieve their goals:
· Inventory tracking: knowing exactly where a good or product is located enables supply chain professionals to get hold of it and transfer it forward in the supply network.
· Order management: tracking orders, customizing pricing, initiating the return and subsequent refund, and sending quotes all ease the transaction between customers and the business.
· Transfer management: since the essence of supply chain management is enabling inventory movement and storage, transferring product to where it is most valued is an indispensable quality in the supply chain relationship.
· Reporting and analytics: inventory management's reporting and analytics aspects permit supply chain analysts to evaluate and predict future sales- this would significantly reduce the chances of unprecedented shortages or surplus in goods.
· Purchasing: creating, managing, and tracking purchase and orders simplify the supply chain network.
· Shipping capabilities: automating shipping of goods from the inventory would eliminate the risks of late deliveries or delivering wrong packages.
A career in supply chain management
The purview of supply management is vast- it encompasses aspects from manufacturing, packaging, storing, transporting, logistics, and final delivery- therefore, it creates multiple job positions from different sectors. Some of the most notable careers in supply chain management are production planning, Logistics Resource planning, Transport administration, Warehouse management, Quality management, Purchasing management, etc.
The diverse sectors incorporated in supply chain management offer numerous job roles and positions for employment-seekers. As India is experiencing a surge in industrial companies and markets, the demand for supply chain professionals also mounts. Moreover, as you enter the supply chain industry, you will have to harbor a wide array of transferable skills- planning, management and administration, evaluation and forecasting, workflow optimization, etc.- that would be useful for any career path.
Young job-seekers can capitalize on this opportunity offered in the supply chain management domain by enrolling in the Professional Certification in Supply Chain Management & Analytics course of IMARTICUS Learning. It is an online course developed by IIM Roorkee that prepares you for the high-demand job roles in supply chain management.
To avail of this course in Professional Certification in Supply Chain Management & Analytics, you can contact us through chat support. You can also drive to our training centers in Mumbai, Thane, Pune, Chennai, Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Patna, Cochin, Jaipur, Dehradun, Lucknow, or Ahmedabad.