How to Effectively Manage Field Spare Parts Inventory

In the field service industry, proper inventory management is essential to a successful business. However, with spare parts stored across warehouses, stockrooms, and technician vehicles, it can be easy to let valuable inventory slip through the cracks. Let’s take a closer look at how you can effectively manage field spare parts inventory using the latest field service software.  After all, inventory is an expense waiting to be converted into revenue. It is the mismanaging of spare parts inventory that results in missed revenue, unnecessary added cost, and misuse of cash.

Two technicians checking inventory

Helping Field Technicians Get the Spare Parts They Need

Repeated field service visits cost your business time and money while delaying your service-to-cash cycle. When it comes to managing spare parts in the field, it is essential to have the right part at the right place at the right time, and give your technicians the tools they need to successfully transfer, invoice, and order inventory on the go. 

Mobile inventory management solutions allow technicians to keep an eye on the inventory in their vehicles—ensuring they always have the parts they need. When a job calls for a unique spare part, technicians can use mobile inventory management software to locate the nearest available spare part, whether in a nearby location, warehouse, or even another technician’s vehicle. With visibility into the available inventory, technicians can work efficiently, independently, and successfully towards their projects.

Recording Transfer and Usage of Inventory

Traditional, outdated inventory management options can leave gaps in parts usage and transfer records. Failure to properly record inventory usage and transfers can create several issues, including:

  • Unfulfilled invoicing: Customers may not be charged for the parts required for their repair or service visit if not recorded correctly, causing inventory inaccuracies
  • Stock shortages: Without recording part usage and transfer, you may not know when it’s time to restock. 
  • Time waste: With outdated inventory information, technicians may waste valuable time searching for parts that no longer exist. This lapse can also leave technicians without the spare parts they need—requiring a second visit to the job site. Repeat visits significantly increase operating costs and have a negative impact on customer satisfaction.
  • Approval delays: Even after successfully locating a spare part, outdated processes can leave technicians waiting without needed information on transfer requests and approvals. 

Field inventory management solutions can help mitigate these issues. With mobile app compatibility, technicians can request, approve, and record inventory transactions on the spot—ensuring nothing goes unaccounted for. 

Unused Inventory: The Need for Spare Parts Management

When it comes to inventory management, many businesses struggle to keep the right inventory stocked. However, poor inventory management can also leave your business stockpiling too many spare parts. While you might think “more is better,” this practice can have some dire consequences for your bottom line:

  • Tying up your funds: When a significant amount of capital is tied up in spare parts inventory, you might find your business tight for cash. 
  • Parts becoming obsolete: Older inventory can become obsolete— leaving your business eating the cost of unused spare parts. 
  • Expired materials: Similarly, certain spare materials have expiration dates. When this unused inventory sits for too long, it will become useless for your business.

When excess or lack of inventory become a problem, your business needs spare parts management software. This support can ensure you do not over-order or under-order inventory. Additionally, by maintaining inventory visibility, you can help ensure technicians use spare parts and materials before they become obsolete. 

How Does Spare Parts Inventory Management Software Work?

Intelligent inventory management software uses data analytics to project future spare parts requirements based on several data elements such as historical usage, part reliability specifications, environment-specific conditions, etc. With the latest technology on your side, your business can experience enhanced inventory management benefits, including:

  • Real-Time Inventory Updates: Field inventory management software tracks your inventory in real-time by keeping up-to-date records of every transaction. 
  • Accurate Invoicing: With advanced field inventory management features, you can create invoices with extreme accuracy. 
  • Comprehensive Inventory Visibility: Field technicians can easily locate the nearest spare part and seamlessly transfer parts between other field technicians and field stock locations. 
  • Mobile Spare Part Transfer Approval: To ensure inventory transfers are recorded, most field service businesses require transfer approval. Mobile inventory management apps allow technicians to request transfers and receive approvals almost instantly. 
  • Keeping Inventory Stocked: To avoid inventory shortages, technicians can create and submit purchase orders for critical parts directly through the mobile app. This will restock the inventory required in the field before technicians run out. Spare parts inventory software allows field techs to routinely perform inventory cycle counting to ensure that the system and the physical counts of parts are in sync. 

Collectively, spare parts management software offers comprehensive, accurate, and efficient inventory management

Spare Parts Inventory Management Software

FieldEquip: Your Source of Spare Parts Inventory Management Software

When you are ready to get the highest level of support for your field inventory, FieldEquip is here for you. Our field service inventory management software provides the latest technology, features, and capabilities. We invite you to schedule a free demo here online or review our service offerings to explore our comprehensive array of field service solutions.

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