Taxes are due today, so while procrastination is center stage right now I decided to take the weekend off from blogging and listing and tackle something that I abhor but has to be done to make sure things run smoothly. Inventory.
Warehouse Learning Grounds
Back when I was in college I worked in a photo supply warehouse. Yeah, back when film was still a thing and the owners told me that digital was a “fad”. They went out of business some years back.
Anyway, this is where I cut my teeth to the whole world of inventory management and order fulfillment. The bin location model in place there is the same one that I use for my own mini-warehouse today. And if I had to, I know how to ship Haz Mat and entire skids of merchandise.
But back then we had catalogs with words. Not a bunch of photos. And very few one-off items ever made it into the system unless it was an auction pick up. The inventory system itself was all command line as well, and as I said, no pictures. You’d match up SKUs and part numbers if you weren’t sure, then someone else would double check it. Simpler times indeed.
To my point, inventory was something that we did once a year in January and everyone in the entire company came in over the weekend to do it. As time went on I somehow got elected to be the one to do inventory ALL YEAR LONG. Sure, it’s easier for someone who knows the entire catalog in-and-out to do something like that. But man was it tedious.
My boss would hand me a printout on continuous green bar computer paper (affiliate link) that we used in our wide dot matrix printer as I arrived to work. That printout was of a number of warehouse sections which when I wasn’t pulling and packing orders I would double check and update our inventory as needed. Did I mention how tedious that was?
Looking back on it, that was a great experience though. And it certainly comes in handy with reselling. I only wish that I had a proper warehouse space to do it out of. Someday.
Do you do inventory checks? If so, how often?