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The inventory advisor

May 16, 2016

The scary reality of the “MASTER” spreadsheet

If you’ve been following along with the Inventory Mentor’s series on inventory spreadsheets like we have, you’ll be interested by their latest post. The gist is simple: you’ve put in a major effort to build your inventory spreadsheet, but has it started to control you?

The fact is, most businesses with inventory probably have some Excel file they send around. You know, it’s the one that says “MASTER” at the end (usually in all caps so the team doesn’t get it confused).

But let’s be honest about who’s in charge in here. You may have built this thing, and you might be proud of what you built, but now it controls you. Why? Because it just doesn’t work if you’re not consistently feeding properly-extracted data into the “MASTER.”

It’s a full-time job keeping this beast of a spreadsheet happy and healthy. And even with all that work, you’re still not likely to be producing optimal purchase orders that keep your inventory perfectly balanced. It’s also a mundane, error-prone process that wears out many inventory managers.

And that’s something The Inventory Mentor really highlights here. The person who built that giant “MASTER” spreadsheet also creates risk within the company. What happens if they are sick, taking a well-deserved vacation, or decide to switch jobs? What if the increasing complexity becomes simply too difficult for this person to manage?

Having a single point person who has an ordering process based off Excel makes a business more vulnerable. And that vulnerability equals risk. Is that a risk you’re taking with your spreadsheet?

Next week, The Inventory Mentor is wrapping up their series. They’ll be looking for some solutions to get away from that tyrannical “MASTER” inventory spreadsheet.

Watch how Sage Inventory Advisor can unchain you from the MASTER spreadsheet

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