Blog Series

Shrinking Shrink With Technology

Audits and analytics can help ease the pain of the ugly side of doing business.
Melissa Kress
Executive Editor
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Managing inventory with technology

Inventory control is a key piece of the convenience store offering. Knowing what's in stock and out of stock and when to reorder certain items keeps products on the shelves, customers walking through the door, and the registers ringing.

But there is another side of inventory control that is just as important: shrink. Higher shrink rates require stores to buy more product to replace what is missing, which can push gross profit margin ranges down over time, as Shawn Backo, director of enterprise programs at Petrosoft, pointed out during a recent webinar hosted by Convenience Store News.

There are myriad reasons behind shrink, but they fall into three general buckets: customer theft, employee theft, and vendor theft. The good news is that retailers can leverage technology to mitigate these difficulties and prevent losses. 

On the flip side, inventory management can also spot overordering generally caused by poor invoicing, Backo noted.

Audits help, analytics help, and automated price comparisons help.

With any business, there are the "ugly" parts of the operation, but these can be managed efficiently, effectively and with relatively little pain with the right technologies. 

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