Setting Up Your Inventory

Taking inventory seems like an easy enough task. You count the products on-hand and then calculate the total value. While this seems like a simple process, there are several factors that you need to be aware of that can either overstate or understate your inventory values. In order to get accurate values for your inventory, you first must get an accurate inventory. 
The first step to getting an accurate inventory is keeping your storerooms and coolers neat and organized. Nothing can make inventory more dreadful than a cluttered, overstocked, unorganized storeroom or walk-in coolers and freezers.  ​Take the time to organize your storeroom and refrigerators before you begin. This will save you time and aggravation during the counting process.

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Properly setting up your storerooms and refrigeration can save time and money. If you can see what you have, it will help prevent over-ordering and help keep the product from sitting and going bad, leading to waste. A well-organized storeroom and refrigeration will make ordering and the inventory process more accurate while saving you time during an already busy day. When you have too much product or unkept storerooms, you waste time having to search for things and are more likely to lose product to spoilage and theft.   Additionally, you want to make sure your storerooms and refrigeration meet all safety and Health Department standards.  This will be discussed further in the Safety & Sanitation section.

​     When setting up your storerooms and refrigeration, products need to be organized and stored in an order that makes sense.  Try to keep like products together if possible. It not only makes it easier to count the products during inventory but makes it easier to find the products when you need them. Most importantly, once you set up your coolers and storerooms, they need to stay that way. 
     You should have the same product in the same place day after day. Again, this will make finding and accounting for the products more efficient.  Having the products in a logical order that are kept in the same spot will also be critical for setting up your inventory sheets.  Your inventory count sheets need to reflect the order in which products are found on the shelves. This again will make the process of counting inventory more efficient and accurate.

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Set your storeroom and refrigerators up in a logical order with like products in the same location. Ensure that products are stored in the same location to make ordering and inventory easier and more efficient