If you’re still managing your inventory using spreadsheets or other manual processes, your company isn’t operating at its full potential. Add the large amounts of time and money that a manual system costs to a still-unstable supply chain, and the situation becomes a crisis. Fortunately, there is a solution: a modern inventory management system. The best of these systems include artificial intelligence (AI) to save you as much time and money as possible. Using the power of AI, you can streamline your inventory management and outpace your competition.
AI can transform your inventory management systems by streamlining, automating, and monitoring every aspect of your inventory. Here are five main ways that AI can improve your inventory management:
- Enhanced Productivity
Through an AI-enhanced inventory management system, many routine tasks and workflows can be automated. You can set up customized rules that trigger specific actions automatically. AI can monitor and make adjustments to things such as item quantities, cycle times, lead times, temperatures, errors, and planned downtimes. This automation enables your employees to focus on valuable, revenue-generating projects that promote company growth and product quality instead of repetitive routine tasks.
In addition, by using AI with a cloud-based system, you can access accurate information in real-time and make more informed decisions. You can even input data like wages and performance numbers to consolidate data on employee performance.
- Improved Warehouse Management
An intelligent warehouse automation system can automate the movement of inventory, managing physical and digital processes simultaneously with little to no human intervention. AI can handle repetitive logistical tasks like tracking pallets or inventory control. For example, such a system can track how many SKUs will be shipped in the next day and recommend that employees pick them all up at the same time to avoid repeat trips. And although this technology is still in its early stages, AI could potentially even help a robot navigate a warehouse and put together an order without human assistance.
- Accurate Demand Forecasting
AI can use advanced logic and analysis to manage everyday business situations like demand forecasting. It can analyze large quantities of customer data to predict trends based on season, region, and purchase history to give you an edge over your competitors. It can even collect data from external sources like online reviews and social media to improve its algorithms. Manual processes can’t handle nearly the amount of data that is needed for such accurate forecasting.
- Minimized Downtime
In addition to demand forecasting, AI can also use predictive algorithms to learn from past failure patterns and attempt to avoid these issues going forward. For instance, if a machine has needed repairs at similar intervals of time in the past, AI can alert you so that you can schedule maintenance before the next anticipated breakdown can occur. Such functionality can allow your machines to continue running as much as possible, minimizing downtime based on failure. AI can even analyze your server usage to predict the best time for your IT team to perform server updates and maintenance.
- Improved Customer Service
Customer service is vital to every business. One of the main ways in which AI can improve customer service is by providing detailed, real-time inventory data in a centralized database. It can maintain optimal stock levels by reordering when products run low, reducing the chances of a customer encountering an “out of stock” message.
AI can also improve customer service in more creative ways. AI-powered chatbots can provide answers to common questions or perform certain tasks for customers such as providing a shipping update on their order. Proactive and technologically savvy customer service creates loyal customers who are likely to share their positive experience with others.
Acumatica, a cloud-based ERP, integrates AI into its platform and inventory management software to help you achieve all the benefits above. At Mindover, we’re committed to providing our customers with expert implementation, support, and customization for exceptional business software solutions like Acumatica. Contact us today to learn more or schedule a free consultation.