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Daily, Weekly, Monthly, or Yearly? The Best Timeframe to Count Auto Parts Inventory

Auto repair parts in your shop are cash on the shelves. The success of your auto repair shop solely depends on how well you monitor purchased and returned parts, ensuring every part ends up on a repair order.

Auto parts tracking is a critical element of your shop, requiring a little more attention if you want to improve your inventory management process. Without it, your staff will spend an unnecessary amount of time looking for and waiting for high-demand parts. But most of the time parts tracking has never been timelier, impacting operational costs and bottom line.

You need the right parts in stock at the right time to cater to your customer needs. But how often should you count auto repair parts inventory? Is it daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly? With that in mind, here’s the time frame to identify the winning strategy of parts tracking for your auto repair shop

Daily Counts of Auto Repair Parts: Keeping Tabs on the Pulse

Daily inventory tracking offers a real-time snapshot of your stock levels; however, it is not done often.

As an auto repair owner, you know that the demand for parts fluctuates rapidly. This approach is the best fit for high-demand items, including oil filters, seals, spark plugs, and more. Daily count of these items allows you to catch discrepancies promptly, preventing stockouts or overstock situations.

Of course, when you own shops in multiple locations, tracking and recording parts daily is daunting. You can do regular rotation, ensuring that high-demand items are counted at least twice a week. This is because your staff is more likely to remember what happened to auto parts a few days ago rather than what happened to them a few months ago.

Weekly Inventory Audits: Striking a Balance

Weekly inventory audits help to manage and monitor parts having a fast turnover. So, you don’t end up over-ordering or under-ordering any part, striking the perfect balance between accuracy and efficiency.

This approach reduces unnecessary downtime and costs, streamlines workflow, and ensures there are no delays and empty shelves. It’s because your outsourced accounting partner keeps records up to date and reconciles purchased and returned auto parts, so they match your actual stock on hand.

Monthly Purchased and Returned Parts Reviews: Gaining Insights

After daily or weekly inventory audits, you identify the pattern till the end of the month. Monthly reviews are for the parts that have even smaller discrepancies. This timeframe works well for counting specialty order parts, allowing you to forecast future demands and make informed decisions.

Monthly counts help in sales, invoices, and cash reconciliation, ensuring the accuracy of your physical counts. You can easily compare your ledgers to reconcile purchased and returned parts, inventory invoiced and not received, pending credits, open repair orders, counter tickets, dirty cores, and more.

It is rightly said what gets measured gets managed. That is why catching and correcting discrepancies between your inventory general ledger and sub-ledgers on time is imperative. By analyzing your accounts, you can determine the sources of the differences. When you reconcile monthly accounts, you look for calculation mistakes, missing invoices or credits, duplication of invoices or credits, and more.

Yearly Parts Tracking: Big Picture of Inventory Performance

Although you count inventory daily, weekly, or monthly, it is imperative to confirm parts at the year-end to maintain accurate records and keep your books audit ready. It provides a broader perspective on your parts’ performance. You can identify improvement areas, strategically plan for optimal stock levels, and determine order dates in the coming year.

This empowers you to fine-tune your inventory management processes and drive sustainable growth.

Timing is Key for Efficient Inventory Management

Daily or weekly parts tracking is highly recommended as it highlights patterns that may be more difficult to spot after a year of transactions.

This approach helps to improve customer satisfaction by reducing the risk of a customer being told a part is in stock only to discover it isn’t, and it will give you an opportunity to sell or offload parts before they become obsolete.

Not to mention, a physical count of your inventory will increase profitability, no matter what time of the year you undergo it. Also, your staff spend less time looking for parts and more time for repairs.

By John Bugh

John Bugh is Chief Revenue Officer for Pacific Accounting and Business Services (PABS), responsible for the strategic direction, planning, vision, growth, and performance of the company’s marketing, branding, and revenue streams.

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