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What is Field Inventory? Tracking and Managing Inventory Outside the Warehouse

Posted by Maddie Magruder on Jun 5, 2019 10:27:49 AM

 

Companies with operations in the field have the unique challenge of managing inventory that is held and used in places outside of the warehouse. This inventory often includes high-value assets, materials and tools, so tracking it is crucial to running an efficient, profitable organization. 

This is where a mobile field inventory solution comes in. It may sound very basic, but execution is easier said than done. Most solutions are designed for a connected operation with users that are experts in materials handling. Managing similar operations in the field with resources that have casual interactions with inventory requires a more tailored approach.

With the right solution, an organization can eliminate blind-spots in inventory management without disrupting the work that needs to be done. You’ll be able to answer questions like:

  • How often has an asset been misplaced or sat idle when it could be helping generate revenue?
  • How often do you buy a new tool to complete a job because you aren’t sure what’s available?
  • How often does work stop while a foreman runs to the depot for tools or materials?
  • Do you know waste and theft are happening but can’t quite quantify the real cost? 

Field inventory gives you and your field teams visibility into materials and supplies from anywhere—be it in a warehouse, a forward staging yard or on a truck. Search for what you need, transfer from job site to job site or attach material to a work order for accurate billing. Management can see who has what and where it is at all times, even when off-line.

To ensure an accurate record, organizations must have a solution that enables visibility into their inventory no matter where it resides. The most effective solutions integrate with the back office or into cloud services and can take on the role of an inventory system of record.

Field inventory does more than just provide real-time inventory visibility; with the capability to access the information you need when you need it, organizations are empowered to boost their customer service levels. Unlike many warehouse management systems, field inventory is designed to work outside the traditional warehouse. You’ll be able to track processes and make informed business decisions wherever business takes place.

Reduce wasted time and resources

A more accurate look at inventory levels and important information about field processes means less waste. You’ll improve your bottom line with real-time, reliable information that gives you an accurate look into field processes, ultimately boosting productivity.

Give your team the ability to request items or assets

Individual members of your team can access the information they need for the most efficient completion of tasks. Field inventory capabilities offer both a comprehensive view of all inventory movement while also giving employees access to various levels of information. This means field employees can request and access assets as they need them.

Achieve end-to-end visibility across the organization

With so much movement of inventory in the field, misplacing and losing equipment can happen quite often. Having a system of record built for field inventory management alleviates the chance of this occurring and creates a chain of custody to more easily track the movement of any piece of inventory.

 

 

For more information on how to achieve field inventory capabilities in your supply chain, visit https://www.dsiglobal.com/product/platform/field-inventory/.

 

Topics: asset management, digital supply chain, inventory management, inventory visibility, FIELD INVENTORY, field teams, end-to-end visibility

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