Inventory counting: Should it be done in-house or outsourced?


February 14, 2023 | By RetailME Bureau

Stéphane Pignard, General Manager, Altavant

Whether you conduct stocktaking in-house or choose to outsource, you should always be looking at ways to speed up the process while ensuring accuracy, so nothing is counted incorrectly. While there are arguments for and against both methods, it boils down to what you’re more comfortable with and how you’d like your stock to be managed.

Stocktaking in-house

You may already be comfortable conducting your stocktaking in-house, simply because you know your own products, you know your staff and can do this wherever, whenever and whichever method you want. Importantly, if there’s a problem, you’re in full control to fix it.

However, one of the downsides of conducting stocktaking in-house is how long it takes. This might be due to your current stocktaking method such as using pens, paper & Excel. You also need to train and schedule your staff accordingly and make sure they know how to use Excel properly.

A solution to this would be using a completely different method, something more modern and easier to use & manage. This is what Datascan has been made for. Datascan will reduce your own stocktaking in-house by around 66%. This way, you will still be able to oversee your staff performing their counts. You will have your own management platform to check counts, reports, audits, and no more checking individual papers or Excel files.

Now, why to outsource your stocktaking? Here are 12 reasons.

  • Shop staff, in general, dislike counting stock.
  • Too much time is wasted in scheduling, training & monitoring staff to ensure they are counting correctly!
  • In-house counting of stock is not impartial, and results could be falsified unknowingly.
  • The hassle of conducting stocktake and managing staff to ensure accuracy is difficult and unproductive.
  • It’s a long day and can result in lost revenues and increased staff costs if people counting are not efficient.
  • Increased overtime/out of hour cost with in-house Stocktaking, adding to unforeseen cost for small businesses.
  • With in-house stocktaking, you may not be able to get detailed reports on your stock – for example, variance reports, wastage, stock on hand etc.
  • Spot checks may not be carried out thoroughly while people are working in full capacity.
  • It takes management and staff that are vital to the business away from their responsibility of putting the customer first.
  • There is an additional cost to renting your own equipment to carry out a stocktake.
  • Stocktaking is too long while purchases and sales are still in progress throwing your numbers into disarray.
  • Same day reports may not be possible.

At the end of the day, both methods – in-house and outsourced stocktaking – work. It’s all down to personal preference and we, here at Altavant offer solutions for both. Solutions to make your in-house or outsourced stocktaking process faster and more accurate than before.

By Stéphane Pignard, General Manager, Altavant

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