Close

INNOVATION

Small firms should digitise stock management

The country is losing about three per cent of stock.

In Summary

•The country is losing about three per cent of stock due to mismanagement of stock movements

•Many SMEs are still using a book and need to automate in a bid to reduce costs and increase efficiencies that will also enhance productivity

An investor looks at the new sh 20 million spinning machine at Thika clothes mills on Monday. local investors in the textile industry have called on the government to ban cheap textile imports.
An investor looks at the new sh 20 million spinning machine at Thika clothes mills on Monday. local investors in the textile industry have called on the government to ban cheap textile imports.

Small and medium-sized businesses are losing millions of  Shillings annually due to mismanagement of stock, which is still being done manually.

MacMobile Kenya commercial director Andrew Dawson said the losses mainly occur as a result of the poor line of sight, breakages and theft in the businesses.

We estimate that the country is losing about three per cent of stock due to mismanagement of stock movements,” he said.

Dawson added that about 30 per cent of SMEs in Kenya are still using a manual operations system, making it difficult to manage their stock.

“Many SMEs are still using a book and need to automate in a bid to reduce costs and increase efficiencies that will also enhance productivity,” he said.

With the demand for warehousing on the rise, local firms need to invest in distribution management systems.

A report by Tilisi Development Ltd shows demand for warehousing facilities increased 16 per cent in 2017/2018 compared with nine per cent the previous year.

From the survey, almost a fifth of manufacturers in Kenya have lost sales in the past five years on a warehousing shortage, coupled with lack of adequately spaced warehouses, poor locations and unsuitable infrastructure.

Dawson said business pressures are happening in a rapidly evolving technology landscape while verbal communication and paper worksheets are now outdated.

“While reducing operating costs and increasing field resource efficiency is fast becoming the norm, greater adherence to service-level agreements becomes the main competitive business focus for any company,” he said.

 

MacMobile yesterday launched a system dubbed Field Force which generates internal intelligence to help businesses monitor their output from production to consumption.

The firm is already working with brands such as Coca Cola, Unilever, Safaricom and other independent wholesalers.