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Inventory training tip


Combine staff training with an inventory count.

At my practice, we devote one staff training session per quarter to performing a complete inventory count. We print out an inventory sheet from our practice management software, then split up to count pills, cans, and boxes. It takes 12 to 14 people about three to four hours to complete the task. We then compare our manual count with what the computer reports.

When we evaluate this data, we can calculate our turnover rates for an item and determine if we need more or less of it in stock. We aim for a turnover rate of nine to 12 times per year, which means that we sell out of most items every four to six weeks. This doesn't mean we run out of stuff; it means we carry the right amount to prevent running out without our shelves overflowing.

Here's another benefit: Regular inventory counts help us recognize problems such as incorrect SKU numbers, confusing nomenclature in our invoice software that leads to billing errors, and product lines that we consistently don't charge for. Other than staff training, controlling our inventory positively affects our revenue more than any other effort.

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