Counting on your inventory


Any stock-led organisation will know the importance of strict stock control – cash flow, storage costs and wastage are all negatively impacted when inventory is not managed efficiently. Part of efficient stock management involves stock counting to match what your warehouse is storing to what the spread sheet says you should have. This important, and regular process is made easy with an ERP like SAP Business One.


Who performs stock counting?

Depending on your organisation, inventory team and location, you might rely on a number of stock counting representatives:

  • Single counter
  • Multiple counters (each responsible for different items or locations)
  • Team counters (a group of counters where the combined numbers are calculated)
  • A mixture of multiple and team counters


How simple is the process in SAP Business One for counters?

  • With an SAP User Code a link is created for the applicable SAP user and those who have an SAP license
  • It’s also possible to involve non SAP users via the employee master data-link




What tools does a counter access during the proess?

  • The printed stock count document includes the total counted quantity, the individual counter’s quantity and a break down report of team counting
  • This can be printed per counter, per team counters or by individual counters
  • The below image shows the print breakdown report for team counting






What happens to items during the stock count?

The Freeze check box option in the Inventory Count will block the users from performing transactions from the warehouse; at any point the freeze checkbox can be unchecked.




Can I split the stock count transaction?

Yes, it can be split in the following ways:

  • Inventory Counting
  • Inventory Posting


Can I import stock counting data from an Excel document?

Yes, an Excel import can be done for both Inventory Counting and Inventory Posting (this can also be used as an inventory opening balance and can be considered as boon as the performance of importing the data is much faster than Data Transfer Workbench).

If the data is imported into Inventory Counting, it can be copied to Inventory Posting. This option also allows adding or updating the records, and validating the import file for errors.


How does the stock counting tool ensure we don’t duplicate our efforts?

Different team counters cannot select the same serial number, manufacturer serial number, or lot number for the same item (based on the General Setting-Inventory Tab-Items Tab-Unique serial no. by ). This restriction does not apply to individual counters, as it is not necessary.

Note: If the item is managed by serial numbers, you can add the inventory posting document or inventory opening balance document only if each unit of the item is assigned a number – no more, no less. However, missing numbers do not prevent you from adding the inventory counting document.




Is there a maximum variance with multiple counters?

If multiple counters participate in inventory counting, after the user enters the counting results into SAP Business One, the application compares all the counting results, as well as the counting results to the in-warehouse quantities recorded in the system. The biggest difference between different counting results of an item in a storage location is the counters’ difference; the biggest variance between the counted quantities of an item in a storage location and the recorded in-warehouse quantity on the count date is the maximum variance.

Example: Counter A and Counter B, as well as a team of counters (including team Counter A and team Counter B), counted an item in the same storage location. Their counting results are as follows:

  • Counter A: 10
  • Counter B: 8
  • Team Counter A: 4
  • Team Counter B: 5
  • Team counting: 4 + 5 = 9

The item’s in-warehouse quantity recorded in the system is 10 on the count date.

Therefore, the counters’ difference = 2, and the maximum variance = 2.

In addition, two percentage values are provided based on the comparison:

  • Counters’ difference percentage = (|Counters’ difference| / Lowest counted quantity) * 100%
  • Maximum variance percentage = (|Maximum variance| / In-warehouse quantity) * 100%


How are variances highlighted in the inventory count?

If the counted quantity varies from the in-warehouse quantity recorded in the system, and the variance percentage exceeds the defined acceptable limit, the system highlights the corresponding row in red. For more information, see the description about the Variance % field in the Inventory Counting Window.




Don’t let your inventory let your organisation down, get the SAP Business One inventory counting tool as part of your end-to-end enterprise resource planning system today – let the Blue Ocean Systems team show you how easy it is today.


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