Proper inventory management is essential all year round, but as we end one year and prepare for the next, it’s an excellent time to review your practice inventory and take appropriate action to position yourself accordingly for the coming year.
Any business with stock items, including dental practices, has a significant amount of working capital tied up in inventory. But to account for that inventory, a physical count of your supplies, along with real-time data, is a foolproof formula for being prepared for year-end. How a dental practice manages its products and supplies affects its bottom line, so advanced planning is key to minimize unwanted disruptions, operational challenges, and monetary loss.
Inventory management plays a more significant role than just having a sufficient stock quantity. Below are three tips to ensure your inventory is prepared for the new year:
Implement proper inventory management protocols
The most significant benefit of proper inventory management control is understanding product usage and what it means for your stock. Besides providing optimal patient care, the main goal of all successful dental practices is to have enough inventory on hand to meet patient needs. An efficient way to ensure sufficient inventory stock levels is implementing inventory management protocols, such as software, so you can accurately see your stock levels and analyze factors that may affect the overall productivity of your practice.
Manually review your stock
Though inventory management software helps elevate the stress of inventory control, a manual check is still highly beneficial. After thoroughly reviewing your stock, it’s easier to budget for your inventory needs for the coming year. Of course, your inventory budget may change according to patient demand, but this can help you get started. Even if your dental practice has implemented efficient inventory management software, only an actual physical count of your stock can reveal what you have on hand and make sure that it matches what is documented in your system.
Make necessary changes that will benefit your bottom line
There’s a fine line between oversupply and undersupply, and mastering how to achieve an optimal balance is essential for your bottom line. It’s no secret that an overabundance of inventory can expire, leading to monetary loss, but an undersupply can hinder the ability to treat your patients promptly. Ensuring that your inventory is stocked appropriately all year round can improve the efficiency of your practice. Sufficiently stocked inventory at year-end will allow your practice to pick up right where it left off in 2021 and eliminate the stress of being unprepared in the new year.
Year-end inventory counts can be a hefty undertaking, but it doesn’t have to be a burden with the proper preparation and protocols. Effectively managing your inventory ordering and tracking processes can set your practice up for continued success every year. Take this time to reflect on the past year, make any necessary changes to enhance your efficiencies, and you’ll be sure to start 2022 off on the right foot.