What supplies are being utilized?
In order to know what is being used, it is important to keep track of the items that have been ordered recently in the last 3 to 6 months. Look at what products are being used most often and how many are being used on a weekly or a monthly basis. Create a spreadsheet and list the items as well as how many need to be stocked. You can also use a white board to have individuals using the supplies write down what they need when it comes to orders. It may be useful to try to use a laboratory information management software to help you with automating your inventory. Try to focus more on the 20% of items that are used for about 80% of your spending.
Who are the individuals that are using these items?
It’s important to figure out what department or what individuals are using these items. From that information you will then need to figure out what items are being used, who is placing the orders, what are the quantities of the items that they are ordering, and how often do they place an order. If your laboratory uses an ELN or LIMS then you should also be able to figure out who the user or the department that is placing the orders
What items do you have available in your supply closet?
Bring your list of the most volume and highest cost items into your storage room. Look just at the ones that are leading in the top 10 or 20 on your list and see if you can locate them in your stockroom. Check to see how many you have. If you use a LIMS or ELN system, you can track the location of items electronically. Just scan the barcode on the item that you are looking for and it will give you the location of where you can find it in the stock room. In the future, it might be helpful to consider the best areas to store your supplies. This can help make your laboratory more efficient. This will not only be beneficial for you but, also for those individuals who will need to find the supplies that they are looking for at some point. To stay more organized, it may also be helpful to arrange inventory by the type of item, the expiration date, and how often it is used.
We hope you learned some helpful tips from us today on how to keep your laboratory supply closets fully stocked. Make sure that before you run out of laboratory lock boxes to give us a call at 1 (800) 735-3632 or email your contact here at McShane Welding and Metal Products. We want to make sure that you get your laboratory lock boxes before you run out so that you can continue to help patients get the accurate test results they need within a timely manner.