Simplifying Your Inventory Game in Custom Integration

March 12, 2024

Let’s chat about something super important but often overlooked in the Custom Integration (CI) business: how you handle your gear, aka your inventory. It’s not just about hoarding bits and bobs for every possible scenario; it’s about being smart and lean with what you keep on hand. The amount of cash tied up in product on the shelves of CI businesses everywhere is astounding. Be smart with how you buy, when you buy, and what you buy so your cash is always at work.

  • Knowing What You Really Need

Every CI project is its own beast, but they all feed on the same basic diet: those everyday “bulk items” like cables, connectors, and wallplates. Knowing what you use most means you can keep these essentials in stock without overdoing it. And here’s a pro tip: stock up on those items you find yourself running out to grab mid-project. Not only does this save you money, but it also keeps your top talent on the job, not wandering the aisles of your local hardware store.

  • Keep It Lean and Mean

Efficiency is everything. A tight process for ordering, storing, and using your inventory can shave off costs and save precious time. Now that the supply chain issues are mostly behind us, get back to ordering “just in time” and be sure you only order for projects where you’ve received enough customer deposit money to more than cover your purchases.  If you have not delegated procurement to someone other than the owner, make that a 2024 priority.  It can be done and will free the owner up to grow the business and double-down on building an incredible team.

  • Money Matters

Remember, every piece of inventory is a chunk of your cash tied up. You want enough to keep your projects humming along smoothly but not so much that it’s dragging down your cash flow. A regular check-up on what you’ve got versus what you’re going to need keeps your finances healthy and your storage space uncluttered. You might be surprised at just how much “stale inventory” has built up in your warehouse.  Make a list of that stuff and get it sold before it ages any more.  Even if you have to sell it at a discount, it moves cash off the shelves and into your bank account.

In the end, smart inventory management means your CI business runs smoother, your projects are less of a headache, and your clients are all smiles. It’s about having what you need, when you need it, without all the extra fluff.


Tailored Metrics for Your Business

Ever tried comparing your success metrics with a friend’s, only to end up confused? The VITAL Method sets standard industry practices in accounting, productivity, project management, leadership, bid management, and warranty support.

In our view, business excellence involves systematic approaches, accountability, and keeping a close eye on the numbers. Wondering how to weave these practices into your business? We’ve got you covered.

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Ready to make informed decisions for your custom integration business? Schedule a free 15-minute call with a VITAL Guide – your first step towards a future where your business decisions are rooted in practical data and strategic insights. Dive into the VITAL Method and transform your business today.


Matt & the team


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