Everyone knows what it’s like to be in the middle of a project and find out that they need some odd or end that they KNOW is in the garage…somewhere. You end up spending an hour and a half digging through the workbench, rifling through drawers, and opening that same corner cabinet two hundred times, just in case you missed it somewhere. Finally, you give up and drive to the hardware store to buy another one (only to find the thing a month later…in the corner cabinet). All this frustration, wasted time, and additional expense—for want of a little inventory management…

“Access” to the Right Inventory Solution

At Leading Edge Industrial, it’s becoming increasingly important to maintain inventory control as our company grows larger. For this essential task, we use Microsoft Access.

“Unlike other database solutions, Microsoft Access is a very inexpensive option. It can save companies hundreds of dollars while offering much of the same capabilities. Smaller companies with limited budgets can take advantage of all that MS Access has to offer.” http://accesshosting.com/microsoft-access-why-its-the-best-database-solution-for-small-business)

Obviously, it’s not as important to take an inventory of every nail, screw, and scrap of wood in your garage, but for a company whose very livelihood depends on getting hold of items in its inventory asap, an efficient inventory solution is paramount to its day to day operation.

Proper inventory management, of course, is dependent upon the individual who actually inputs the data. Even the best software in the world can’t make up for human error. But we are all human and occasionally make mistakes: we forget to order a specific material needed for a project or we miscount how much material or how many parts are left, and thus, the project is delayed, the client may be unhappy, and we might get stressed and even lose money.

Keep Organized with Inventory Control

This doesn’t have to be the case! There are a few things you can do to help prevent, or least lessen, inventory management mistakes. First of all, use good software, like Microsoft Access. Access is an inexpensive software option that can save companies hundreds of dollars while offering capabilities similar to more expensive programs. The main reasons for using a database for your inventory solution are central control, reduced waste and cost, and real-time reports.

Also, properly organizing your database is essential to making it work efficiently for you. If you aren’t familiar with the term 3rd Normal Form, you may want to look it up. It’s a method for ensuring that the data in each table is normalized according to a primary key so that you don’t end up duplicating data or having data put in the wrong area or in an illogical fashion. If you set up your database properly from the start, you won’t have to deal with issues of corrupt or bad data, and you can ensure that the right information is put in the right places.

Take the time to set up and continuously update your database, and you’ll always know what you have in stock and where it is. It may not be worth it to you to take inventory of all the bits and bobs in your garage at home, but if you did, you’d never again have to ransack the place looking for that special fastener you kept for that cabinet door.