Over the past decade, more and more business support tools have been moving to the cloud, and a wide variety of businesses have embraced its many functions.
For some companies, the cloud has become a crucial component within their business operations, but for others, it can seem quite intimidating.
Though the cloud has many different uses, utilizing a cloud-based inventory management system is especially beneficial for B2B eCommerce businesses.
The cloud is a network of software and services that run on the internet instead of locally one’s computer or data center.
It allows users to access programs and data from anywhere with an internet connection, making it convenient to use.
Most cloud computing services fall into one of three general categories: Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) or Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS).
When it comes to inventory management, SaaS is most common, as it can be accessed over the internet.
Investing in the continued growth of your B2B ecommerce company by adopting a cloud-based system will not only be advantageous now, but will become necessary in the future.
Here are a few of the reasons why thousands of businesses are choosing cloud-based solutions for inventory management.
Moving inventory data into the cloud enables you to access that information anytime, anywhere.
Whether working in the office or at home, you can analyze and edit the same reports and applications.
Cloud systems keep all data in one central location, which minimizes time wasted on duplicative efforts or manual errors. It makes collaboration stronger, faster and simpler.
Remote access to inventory data makes communication much simpler, as any employee can update and share files in real time.
This eliminates the need to send files back and forth or exchange information over lengthy phone calls.
The accessibility granted by cloud-based systems is integral in facilitating productivity and efficiency, which are essentials to be successful in today’s global economy.
A growing business needs systems that can grow with them. Cloud-based inventory management systems are designed to do just that.
As cloud-computing company NetSuite states, “The business processes you had in place five years ago will likely differ substantially from the way you operate five years from now.” An inventory management system must evolve with you over time.
As warehouse operations expand, a cloud-based system can adjust and scale to fit the business’s needs.
Adding a new inventory system for each new product or business entity can slow your growth, but a scalable cloud system will continue to work harmoniously while supporting new data.
For example, a cloud-based system can support multiple business models and manage international expansions, which can scale multiple countries, while accepting multiple currencies and conforming to a range of tax rates.
A cloud-based inventory management system is built with flexibility over time and provides support for your unique requirements.
Monitoring inventory levels and ensuring that all information is up-to-date is a problem that businesses of all sizes have to solve.
At the same time, businesses must also keep an appropriate level of stock on hand. Having too much inventory on hand can limit cash flow, but carrying too little inventory can result in back orders, dissatisfied customers and the loss of potential revenue.
This challenge is maximized for businesses operating in the online marketplace, as sales can come from a wide array of virtual sources.
Inventory that is managed in the cloud is a perfect solution to this problem, as it consistently gives real-time visibility into a business’s stock activity.
Whenever you receive an order, make a sale or dispatch a shipment, your inventory data is updated instantaneously.
Moreover, you’ll have a more comprehensive view of current inventory, which will provide better insight into the demands of your business.
As cost effectiveness continues to be at the forefront of decisions for many business leaders, many would be happy to know that a cloud-based inventory management system is immensely cost efficient.
Because access to SaaS systems is offered on a per-month, per-user basis, front end investments are slim, and the business is only required to pay for the resources they use.
In addition to direct inventory management costs, costs for human capital can also be optimized.
Inventory management in the cloud runs smoothly and can function with little maintenance, so fewer personnel are needed for basic upkeep and inventory support duties.
Additionally, because fewer team members are needed to record inventory levels, their skills can be utilized for highly demanded business activities, like marketing or customer service.
The inventory visibility provided by cloud-based management systems also encourages and supports lean stock levels, which prevents the need to discount merchandise and improves markup percentage over time.
Using a cloud-based system to best understand the movement of your inventory levels can increase your total long-term profits.
Moving your B2B inventory management system into the cloud is a smart decision for current business activities, as well as, long-term strategy.
It improves total business efficiencies and makes the inventory management process much more convenient, cost-efficient and accurate.
A cloud-based system is sure to propel your business into the future and change the way your organization operates for the better.
What are the pros of a cloud-based inventory management system?
- Real-time updates
- Cost Efficient