16 Useful Inventory ERP Functions for Food Companies

Since inventory is your largest cost, you need to manage it tightly – not something you can do that accurately with pencil-and-clipboard, not to mention lacking full, real time visibility of inventory. As well, if you want to compete in the food industry, you need automated processes that can handle shorter shelf life, stock rotation, inventory visibility, and lot traceability – all key data that need that need to be balanced for optimal inventory management.

Full integration of inventory data with ERP software means your employees have real-time access to data about on-hand inventories and historical demand. Here are some suggestions for assessing inventory management functionality in the ERP you select for your food company:

1- Inventory location - Access sales, order, item card, etc. from anywhere

2 - Put-away rules - based on allergens, kosher or other handling/storing requirements

3 - Vendor compliance and exceptions - automatically recorded

4 - Support catch - weights for receiving - tracking distinct UOM on receipt

5 - Support items - require specific paperwork such as CofA, or proof of incubation

6 - Pick for shipments - manually or by handheld device

7 - Expiration analysis - including FIFO principals for picking and consumption

8 - Capacity overview

9 - BOM by location

10 - Physical and cycle counts - availability on handheld devices

11 - Shop floor integration - Touchscreen devices, etc. for materials consumption

12 - Containers - pick, build and move, including single scan inventory management (“pallet license”)

13 - WMS functionality - Warehouse management system functionality includes receiving, picking, put-away, pick, ship, dynamic move, physical inventory counts and quality

14 - Audit, bin replenishment, product lookup, output, and label printing

15 - Shipment load consolidation, and logistics run planning

16 - Co-product and by-product management

Inventory visibility, control, and accuracy – business benefits you must experience with your ERP system for your food company!

This is the 3rd guest blog post in a 3-part series from JustFoodERP, preceded by Selecting ERP for the Food Industry and ERP for Food Distributors: Key Functionality.

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Heather Angus-Lee

About the author…

Heather Angus-Lee is a writer with JustFoodERP, an IndustryBuilt Software company, which provides ERP software and services to food processors and distributors across North America. She can be reached at heather.angus-lee@justfooderp.com.

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Heather Angus-Lee