Businesses struggle with stock records

Half of UK SMEs have lost sales due to low stock levels, research finds.

According to an SME study by Wasp Barcode Technologies, nearly half (47 per cent) of respondents have difficulty keeping stock records up to date.

Some 64 per cent feel that their stock control system could be improved, while nearly half (47 per cent) agree that they often have difficulty keeping stock records up-to-date or, on occasion, could not locate stock they thought they had.

One third of companies surveyed (32 per cent) have seen an increase in the amount of stock written off due to unexplained losses.

The survey questioned managers in UK companies in companies that store stock, parts or products for the day-to-day running of their business, either for manufacturing or sales. The companies were selected from the retail/wholesale, manufacturing, healthcare/pharmaceutical, technology/communications and engineering/construction sectors.

The statement most agreed with, out of those tested, was ‘The system that we use for stock control could be improved’, with almost two-thirds (64 per cent) of respondents agreeing.

Some 50 per cent agree that ‘In the past, we have received orders that we could not deliver due to low stock levels, resulting in lost sales’.

Disorganisation is apparent among respondents with almost half (47 per cent) agreeing with ‘There have been occasions in the past where my business could not locate stock that we thought we had’ and almost half (47 per cent) agree with ‘We often experience difficulty keeping our stock system up to date because stock levels are continually changing’.

A third (32 per cent) agree with ‘In recent years, we have seen an increase in the amount of stock written off due to unexplained losses’.

See also: 6 ERP systems for growth businesses

Alan Dobie

Alan Dobie

Alan was assistant editor at Vitesse Media Plc (previous owner of smallbusiness.co.uk) before moving on to a content producer role at Reed Business Information. He has over 17 years of experience in the...

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