The two terms warehouse and inventory management are used popularly in the context of manufacturing and sales businesses. In some situations, they are used interchangeably as the same type of materials management. However, there are various differences in inventory and warehouse. In this article, we would like to discuss more these two terms.
What is Inventory Management
Inventory management mainly refers to the process of monitoring stock related information including weight, dimension, quantity, location, etc. This type of management plays an important role in buying and selling products during manufacturing.
To be more detailed, inventory management included a variety of related tasks namely:
- Ordering and reordering stock
- Recording inventory status
- Predicting demand
A robust inventory management is greatly beneficial since it enables businesses to keep appropriate stocks in the inventory in order to meet customer demand. In contrast, if businesses fail to handle inventory problems, they may face various possible problems such as losing potential orders or overstock.
What is Warehouse Management?
The concept of warehouse management is much broader in scope compared with inventory management. In general, warehouse management refers to monitoring material flow within the manufacturing process.
Tasks included in an effective warehouse management could be:
- Receiving inbound items
- Monitoring, stacking, and transferring stock through warehouses
In this technological era, both of these activities can be greatly improved by various existing software and solutions in the market. Many retailers have adopted these solutions in order to increase the level of efficiency and accuracy for managing their businesses.
Features / Complexity
Inventory management systems mainly inform businesses about the total amount of stock that they have in each particular storage location.
Meanwhile, warehouse management systems allow businesses to monitor their entire storage systems within a warehouse.
Generally, warehouse management is more complicated than inventory management. To illustrate, if a retailer obtains several storage sections, warehouse management will show that retailer the total number of a certain product across every location. In contrast, an inventory management system can only tell you how many products are available in a specific storage location.
Another key distinction between inventory and warehouse management is about the ability to be integrated with the overall logistic process. In short, managing warehouse is closely associated with other ongoing operations whereas managing inventory is not.
Inventory management can be considered as the first step of the entire business process, which takes place in the warehouse.
However, warehouse management is closely related to other aspects of management, such as, distribution and quality management.
Warehouse Management software
Warehouse management software can also monitor product amounts, cycle count, select, stack, ship orders, and handle multiple locations. Besides, it is able to offer more information and functionality related to product shipping, channel listing, and a variety of different functions. In reality, warehouse management software provides an array of helpful features that can improve warehouse operations.
Inventory management software
A computer-based system for monitoring inventory levels, orders, purchases, and deliveries is known as inventory management software. It may also generate work orders, bills of materials, and other production-related documents in the manufacturing industry. This software is ideal for businesses looking for a less complicated inventory management system that focuses on the actual product itself. Inventory management software is best suitable for small to medium-sized companies with a limited product selection
There seems to be several confusion between inventory and warehouse management. We hope that this article will help you have a better understanding of them.
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