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The customer service rep of your budding company receives an email from a recently won over client, placing an urgent order. The rep fumbles around and consults an old, outdated inventory management system that’s unfit for business. Feedback? Shipment will arrive in a few hours, only to realize that an integral component is out of stock. Hours later and out of frustration, the client leaves for good!

The above scenario presents a classic case of poor inventory management. In fact, about 43% of small businesses haven’t yet taken up inventory management software, a statistic that’s somewhat worrisome. A lack of inventory management slows down business and can cost you customers. But that doesn’t have to happen to you. Before picking out any system, here’s what you need to do:

• Identify the Number One Business Challenge?
Through our interactions with small business owners, we have established that their main challenge is inefficiency. And our bet is this is a problem for you too! When your employees spend too much time trying to establish in-stock and out-of-stock items, or are forced to dig into a pile of sheets just to find information, then something is wrong. Inventory management software can help your team to save time. With a little homework, you can be able to choose a system that significantly reduces the time taken to place orders, pack and deliver products, and synchronize data from different sources.

• Choose a System with a Simple User Interface
A key trait about inventory management software is that it should be simple to learn and even simpler to use. That way, the transition process can be short and smooth since your employees will be able to learn as a group.

• Scrutinize the range of Services the Software Offers
As your business expands, you will need a system that can accommodate changes. For this reason, it’s important to ask the vendor to outline the specific services the software offers. Some of the most important services that should never miss out include automation of transactions, product categorization, and multichannel integration. If, in addition, the system offers accounting services to help you with cost-monitoring and tax-related issues, the better.