To run a business smoothly and successfully, it’s necessary to have an inward & outward supply of items called inventory. Inventory items are really valuable for the business. Hence it becomes important to manage and control a company’s inventories effectively.
That’s why most businesses require professionals like Inventory Controllers and Managers to handle inventory control and management tasks.
In this article, we will explore the job of an inventory controller, their responsibilities, the skills required for the job, the importance of effective inventory control, and the challenges they face.
What is an Inventory Controller and What do they Do?
“An Inventory Controller is a person who takes care of the inventory of goods in an organization”. Their main job is to make sure the inventory is just right – not too much and not too little. They work closely with different departments like purchasing, warehousing, and sales to keep everything running smoothly and to keep costs low when managing inventory.
They develop inventory management systems, maintain stock levels, and coordinate the logistics of orders and transfers. While doing this they report updates and different types of analysis to their supervisors. Based on those reports upper management takes key business decisions.
They are responsible for counting, managing, and maintaining inventory levels in the warehouses of the company. He is in charge of stock movement (receipt, transfer, and dispatch) activities such as receipt and dispatch of inventory items and produces related documents (such as Dispatch Vouchers, Packing Slips, GRNs, MRVs .etc).
In short, they do,
- Plan Inventory: Forecast and plan inventory requirements based on data, trends, and sales projections to maintain optimal stock levels.
- Monitor Inventory Levels: Regularly monitor inventory levels, track stock movement, and take action to prevent discrepancies.
- Manages Orders: Coordinate with purchasing to place timely orders, considering lead times, supplier availability, and budget constraints.
- Quality Control: Conduct quality checks, inspect incoming goods, and ensure adherence to quality standards.
- Data Analysis and Reporting: Generate accurate reports, analyze inventory data, and provide insights for inventory optimization.
- 10+ Inventory Controller Interview Questions
- Career Path of Inventory Controllers: Opportunities and Advancement
- Inventory Control Specialist Salary
- Hand-picked Inventory Controller Course
In addition to these tasks, inventory controllers are often tasked with developing and implementing inventory control policies and procedures. These guidelines help standardize the inventory management process and ensure that all employees are on the same page.
They also play a pivotal role in forecasting future inventory needs. They analyze sales data, market trends, and seasonal fluctuations to predict the quantity of each product that the company will need in the future. This information is vital for making informed purchasing decisions and avoiding unnecessary storage costs.
What is Inventory Controller Job?
Inventory Controller is a job position in a company warehouse environment. It is an entry-level job in the logistics & supply chain management department. Every company that deals with goods assigns such skilled professionals to keep its stock of either raw materials or final products or both.
Companies hire the following similar job positions for this work,
- Inventory Controller / Clerk
- Inventory Officer
- Inventory Coordinator
- Inventory Manager / Executive
- Inventory Specialist / Management Specialist
- Stock Controller / Coordinator / Incharge / Keeper
All job roles are similar but seniority levels may vary. The sample job opening was posted on Linkedin.com and looks like the following screenshot,
Duties and Responsibilities
The duties and responsibilities of an inventory controller are, to record stock movement, count and monitor inventory levels and make computer-generated reports. He is also responsible to receives, unpacking, and delivering goods; re-stocks items as necessary; labels shelves. And then produce related documents. Learn more
To become a good Inventory controller obtain the following basic requirements,
- Qualification: Graduation in commerce, logistics, business management, or a similar education stream.
- Experience: Minimum 2 years extry level experience in logistics, retail, warehousing, stock keeping, or similar.
And you should possess the following key skill set,
- Analytical skills
- Attention to detail
- Proficiency in ERP software
- Mathematical skills
- Proficiency in Office Suite, MS Excel
- Effective communication
- Problem-solving abilities
- Knowledge of supply chain management
- Time management skills
- Organizational skills
As a professional inventory controller, you should know about the following Key Inventory Control Techniques,
- Just-in-time (JIT)
- ABC inventory analysis
- Bulk shipments.
- Cycle counting.
According to salary.com, The average Inventory Controller salary in the United States is between the range of $83,960 and $110,450 per year. Where the research is done on indeed.com from 250+ reported salaries, the average salary is $63,088 per year in the United States.
The salary varies in various countries and business sectors. What will you get depends on many factors such as education, certification, extra skills, and years of experience.
Employers value competent inventory controllers who maintain optimal inventory levels, minimize costs, and ensure efficient operations. Candidates with strong analytical skills, attention to detail, and inventory management software proficiency are sought after for streamlined processes and improved performance. Theys are seen as valuable assets for reducing errors and driving business success.