How do you track your available inventory? Right now I'm putting all my data into Excel spreadsheets, but they keep getting more and more complex, and I keep finding a need for more and more of them. On one sheet, where I'm also calculating unit costs, I'm tracking a total inventory of how many were made, how many were "lost" (cracked, had extrusions, taste-tested, etc.), how many were sold, and how many are still available for purchase. Today I realized that I also need to keep track of how they're packaged--individually, or in a box of 2 or 3--so that I don't, for example, promise someone 12 of a particular flavor because my spreadsheet says I have that many available and then end up having to pull them out of boxes! I also have yet to mix up flavors in boxes, and once I do that, then I really don't think my current system can handle it. I've worked with Access before, so I know it's possible to use it to track everything I want it to track, but I also have never had an easy time getting Access to do calculations for me, which is what makes me shy away from it.
So what system do you use for inventory tracking, and does it do other things as well like tracking costs and sales and so on? What do you like about it? What other features do you wish it had?
The easiest and cheapest way to do what you want is QuickBooks Pro. It has a decent inventory system, but it is much more than that. It makes invoices, it does payroll(with an additional cost). You can write checks and keep all your accounting together.
As far as inventory, you can have raw materials and finished products using the assembly function. You can have an inventory part for one item or another for a case quantity.
Many people are available to give you instruction on how to use the program. Just google QuickBooks help in your area.
I'm definitely going to look into that. I didn't realize it was more than an accounting package.
Be sure to look at the Intuit website, because there are several versions of Quickbooks for PC. You will need the higher end version (I think it's called Premiere) to add inventory to it. Still, the price isn't bad!
(Note: If you're on a Mac and not running Windows under Bootcamp or Parallels, etc., note that Quickbooks for Mac does not offer inventory management.)
No problem, I am definitely not a Mac girl.