Why Your Inventory Management Software Should Integrate With Your POS System

Priyanka Bhadani9/21/2022

What is inventory management software?

Inventory management software is a computer program used to track inventory levels, orders, sales and deliveries. It can also be used to generate reports and analytics to help optimize inventory levels and improve customer service.

What is Inventory Management?

Inventory refers to the goods, materials, or products that any business plans to monetize. Inventory management involves supervising and controlling the ordering, storage, movement, and use of materials within an organization. It is a critical part of any business as it helps ensure that the supply chain has the right inventory level to meet customer demands and functions efficiently. The key objective of inventory management is to continuously maintain the correct level of stocks so that production costs are minimized, while customer service levels are optimized.

Several key factors are involved in effective inventory management, including accurate forecasting, lead time reduction, optimal reordering levels, warehouse management, and maintaining lean inventories. Businesses must have access to accurate data and analytics to make sound decisions about inventory levels and effective inventory control. This is what a good inventory control software can do. It helps in overall inventory management and oversees the movement of items within a warehouse.

There are several inventory management software solutions available to help manage your business. These solutions track inventory levels, orders, deliveries, and other data points in real time and send out alerts or notifications when stock levels are low.

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How Does Inventory Management Software Work?

An inventory management software is a computer program businesses use to manage inventory data. The inventory management system is designed to help businesses track their inventory levels, monitor stock movements, automate the order replenishment process, and manage vendor relations and order fulfillment. It can also help businesses plan for future stock needs and optimize their supply chain.

The software offers barcode scanning, real time inventory updates, reorder triggers, and integration with accounting software and sales platforms. Inventory management software can be used for physical and digital asset tracking.

For companies that sell physical products, the software can keep track of stock levels at each location and monitor stock movements between multiple locations. It then generates reports on inventory turns and other key metrics and analytics that help businesses optimize their stock levels and improve their overall operations.

For companies that deal primarily in digital assets like software inventory, the software can track license keys or serial numbers, manage user access rights, and automate issuing replacement licenses or keys.

An inventory management software for restaurants helps in managing the inventories of all the ingredients used in preparing food. It keeps track of how much of each ingredient is being used and when it needs to be replenished. This information is vital in ensuring that the restaurant has enough ingredients in stock to meet customer demand.

The key steps of inventory management include-

  1. Purchasing inventory- Goods or materials are purchased and delivered directly to the point of sale or the warehouse. This helps in inventory optimization.
  2. Storing inventory- Products are stored until required at the desired location and then transferred across your supply chain as and when needed.
  3. Tracking inventory- Inventory is tracked to ensure that final products are available when customers want them and to avoid overstocking or understocking products.
  4. Analyzing inventory- Data from the inventory system is analyzed to identify trends and optimize stock levels.

Why Should Your Inventory Management Software Integrate With Your POS?

If you own or manage a retail or restaurant business, you know how important it is to keep track of your inventory. After all, if you don't have the right products in stock, you could lose out on sales. As a customer, you must also have interacted with a POS or point of sale system at a restaurant, retail store or supermarket where transactions occur centrally. These systems can be as simple as a cash register or as complex as a computerized network that tracks inventory as well as prices of products.

If you're looking to streamline your business, a POS system with an inventory management system is a great way to do it. Real-time visibility into your data makes tracking sales, stock levels, and employee performance easy. And since the inventory manager is integrated with the POS system, you can be sure that your data is always accurate.

An inventory management solution with a POS system helps businesses track what is in stock and what products need to be ordered, when they need to be ordered, and how much needs to be ordered. In addition, the POS system provides a platform to track customer information, inventory levels, and history of purchase orders in real time. This knowledge can help you better understand your target market and make informed decisions about marketing and sales strategies, including pricing and promotions.

Here are four reasons why this integration is so important-
  1. Seamless multi channel integration saves employee's time and overall efforts.
  2. Improved order history and forecasting accuracy helps track trends and cost reduction.
  3. Increased efficiency streamlines operations and removes the scope of manual error.
  4. Advanced reporting provides valuable insights for better decision-making.

What Happens When The Two Work in Silos?

For the alliance between marketing and sales to be fruitful, communication, cooperation, and mutual respect between them is essential. The same goes for the inventory management software and point of sale system. When these two entities work independently and without collaboration, there can be many negative consequences.

Each department has its priorities and goals, which can conflict with or even undermine the other's efforts. Additionally, lack of communication can result in duplication of effort and wasted time and resources, as both departments pursue similar objectives without realizing it. It can also prevent sharing of best practices and knowledge, limiting innovation and creativity.

Take, for example, the point of sale-inventory software, Square. Several advanced inventory management features are available with Square in its multiple product portfolio -- Square POS, Square for Restaurants, and Square for Retail -- which you wouldn't find in a simple inventory management software. Square for Retail, for example, is retail inventory system that manages bulk inventory, sends daily stock alert emails, scans barcode labels to create new items, and displays inventory by category. The company also provides reliable customer service to ensure a smooth operation. Then, there is Zoho Inventory a cloud basedinventory management software that easily integrates with sales channels like Etsy, Amazon, eBay, Shopify and others. The software helps a business manage and create sales and purchase orders, track inventory, making operations smooth in the process.

Inventory management and accounting for every sale your company makes isn't easy, there's no doubt about that. A variety of processes are required, including-
  • Maintaining stock levels.
  • Making sure returns are handled correctly.
  • Identifying a business's potential sales.
Integrating the best POS system with an advanced inventory management system is key to staying competitive in today's market. Using it helps you gain visibility into your stock, improve efficiency, and automate some of the most difficult tasks.

Your profits can drastically reduce if you don't have a robust point of sale system with in-built inventory management software, regardless of whether you work in the restaurant or retail industry. POS inventory software offers many affordable and advanced inventory management features, so refusing to scale up to software that simplifies and automates inventory tasks, such as counts, transfers, and reordering, is imprudent.

In short, when inventory management software and POS work in silos, it hurts overall productivity and ultimately prevents an organization from achieving its full potential.

Advantages of a POS System With In-built Inventory Management Software

Using a POS system with in-built inventory management software has many advantages. Some of them are-

  • Saves time and money- The most obvious advantage is that such a system can save businesses time and money by streamlining the process of managing stock levels. Businesses can keep track of their stock levels easily and quickly identify when they need to order more supplies. By having all the necessary information in one place, they can avoid duplication and save on storage costs. Moreover, such systems can automate tasks across different sales channels, such as reordering and stock replenishment.
  • Minimizes the chance of human error- An efficient POS inventory software tracks inventory with better accuracy, speeding up the process and eliminating delays in inventory transfers. It allows business owners to have multiple stores and reliably track inventory at each location without being physically present. With POS inventory software, one can find data without receipts, locate transactions in search, and calculate bills automatically. It reduces the risk of human error in billing as well as returns. Some of these software solutions have payroll processing integrated into them too.
  • Updates Sales Reports- Often, small businesses fail because they can't keep up with trends in time. POS inventory software sends a business regular, timely and updated sales reports. Businesses can generate day-to-day, week-to-month, and year-to-year reports. In addition, a POS-inventory management system for small businesses or big businesses offers a peek into market trends, making it easier for them to keep up with them.
  • Manages promotions and discounts efficiently- With customer details in one place, it can help businesses manage their promotions and discounts more effectively and intelligently. By storing all their promotional information in one place, businesses can ensure that they consistently apply the correct discounts and offers to customers. As a result, such a system can boost sales and encourage customer loyalty. In addition, using an inventory management system can help reduce shrinkage levels (theft, spoilage, etc.) because businesses will have greater visibility of their stock levels and can spot irregularities more easily.
  • Streamlines processes- Using a POS system with in-built inventory management software can help businesses improve their overall efficiency and performance. Having all the relevant information stored in one place makes it much easier for staff members to access what they need, when they need it. It can streamline processes and make them simpler for everyone involved.
Regardless of the type of business, the best inventory management software integrated with point-of-sale help businesses benchmark inventory levels across multiple stores, manage purchase orders, and keep track of stock levels.

Top POS Systems for Restaurants

There's no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to restaurant inventory management software integrated with POS systems. But if you're running a restaurant, you'll want to look for a solution that includes features like menu management, inventory tracking, order management, and seamless integration with other applications. Here are some of the best POS systems for restaurants.

A growing restaurant business must implement compatible software solutions that streamline and simplify operations. A game-changing POS system designed by restaurant operators for restaurant operators, Plumpos is all you need. It not only bridges the operational gaps that are hard to find but is also extremely easy to use, takes little time to set up, facilitates quick and easy payment processing, and comes with a mobile app. It helps staff and cashiers engage more with customers and reduce time spent on a screen.
This next-generation POS system represents the future of the restaurant industry. Using PlumPOS, businesses can easily integrate digital menu boards, kiosks, and table-side ordering systems with open-source APIs.
Here are some of the features of PlumPOS that set it apart from the others-
  1. PlumPOS is an all-in-one point of sale system for restaurants to manage their entire operations single-handedly. It can integrate with any software with the help of Any Connector. PlumPOS can effortlessly communicate with Plum Kiosk, Plum Digital Signage, and Plum Handheld, because it's crucial to have every component of the operation working in tandem.
  2. PlumPOS has various built-in features for smooth transaction workflow, online ordering, table management, payment processing, and employee management.
  3. This cloud based restaurant pos system enhances the efficiency of any restaurant by facilitating exceptional communication between the kitchen staff, management, servers, and all those involved in the restaurant operations, resulting in increased customer satisfaction. In addition, it integrates cloud and touchscreen technology into a single easy to use platform, making the customer experience exceptional.
  4. Restaurant managers make changes to the menu, and offer multiple payment options to their customers (like credit cards, debit cards, wallets, net banking, and more), without breaking into a sweat. The faster a payment is processed, the faster tables turn, creating a positive customer experience.
  5. Returning customers are central to the growth of any small business, as they save effort and money spent acquiring new leads. Moreover, loyal customers themselves help bring in new customers through word of mouth. PlumPOS integrates customer loyalty programs for restaurants effortlessly. Restaurant owners can store customer data, add, redeem and monitor loyalty points, and issue gift cards, discount vouchers, etc., to create customer loyalty with PlumPOS.
  6. PlumPOS is easy to operate and requires no formal training.
A POS terminal, credit card reader, and cash drawer are included in the Plum POS starter bundle for $1,302.98.

Square for Restaurants
Square for Restaurants is a cloud based point-of-sale system that helps large and small businesses manage their inventory well. The solution has the ability to support thousands of stock-keeping units (SKUs) for reordering and shifting inventory between locations, inventory on hand, etc., but Square is also works equally well for businesses with relatively simple inventory needs.

Square POS can integrate with third party inventory management software solutions, including Shopinventory, SKU IQ, and Stitch Labs, and its payment processing fee is only 2.6% (plus 10 cents) per transaction. Square's inventory management gives you daily alerts on out-of-stock or low-stock items, and offers downloadable reports to help you track your sales easily.

Here are some of its key features-
  1. Restaurants can easily add menu items with descriptions and photos, as their business grows.
  2. You can enter your floor plan into this POS system to facilitate the delivery of food to tables quickly.
  3. It allows you to create a new order, cancel an order ticket, and assign orders to tables and individual seats without hassle.
  4. Square POS integrates with kitchen display units at no additional cost.
  5. A business owner can easily analyze sales data and find trends using its advanced reporting tools.
  6. It has a 24X7 customer support service team to assist you.
  7. Square POS comes with two plans -- free and paid. A business owner can create a website using Square online's free version. In addition to offering online ordering options, it also supports tipping. Its basic reporting tools make it easier to craft better business decisions.
The free version of Square POS has limited features, while the Restaurant Plus package costs $60 per month for one device and $40 per month per device on the account. Other add-ons like card readers or Kitchen Display Units are available at an additional cost. The hardware starts at $299.

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Inventory management is important for restaurants because it allows operators to track inventory levels, food costs, and profits. Just by incorporating a simple inventory management software small businesses can streamline many processes. By integrating inventory management with a point-of-sale (POS) system, restaurants can multiply the benefits -- streamline operations, cut unnecessary costs and reduce waste.

A POS system provides real time data on what's selling and what isn't. A business owner can use this information to adjust inventory levels accordingly. For example, if the POS system shows that one pasta dish isn't selling as well as another, the restaurant can reduce the quantity of ingredients ordered for the former and increase that of the latter. It saves money on food costs and helps prevent food waste.

Inventory management integrated with the POS system also allows restaurants to keep track of their most popular items and ensure that they always have enough in stock. It works wonders during busy times, such as lunch and dinner rush-hour. With accurate information about inventory levels, restaurants can avoid running out of food or losing customers to long wait times.