Planning ahead is sometimes easier said than done. Despite our best intentions, family trips never seem to get the full attention they deserve. There’s plenty of time to figure out an itinerary when we get there, right? Or take tax season as another example. The national math assignment is given in late January, but April 15th seems to come up sooner every year.
That’s why we sometimes outsource planning. We visit a travel agent who can help us sketch out that dream vacation. We bring a shoebox full of receipts to an accountant every spring.
When it comes to your association’s continuing education training content, planning includes good inventory management. You could do it yourself by keeping boxes in your office space and counting on your staff to keep tabs on how many course books, workbooks and learning guides you have on hand for each class.
But you know how busy your association staff gets. Though every single member of the team has the best intentions to keep the numbers current, it’s entirely possible that books may be sent out without removing them from the system or spreadsheet where you track inventory.
Even if your staff does a great job tracking inventory, you can probably think of a dozen things off the top of your head that you’d rather have them spend their time doing. Rare is the association that has enough staff time to accomplish all of its goals.
Prepare for the future with reports that show inventory trends over time. When you trust another company with order fulfillment and inventory management, all you have to do is keep an eye on the reports and plan your print runs accordingly.
With a little experience, you’ll learn when you need to have more books on hand and which months are slower. You may have a sense of this already, but it backing up with concrete numbers helps you understand just how many books you’ll need and when. Adjusting your inventory to meet your association’s needs helps to reduce overhead and manage costs.
Inventory management helps you plan ahead; order fulfillment keeps the boxes out of your office. For an even simpler process, choose a single vendor that can help you with both, as well as producing the printed course books and even online training materials.
Omnipress is proud to provide all four services—print, fulfillment, inventory management and online training materials—for associations like yours. (We can also provide an online storefront that your association can use to sell both hard goods and digital files.)
Keep one eye on your inventory and the other toward the future. You can plan for the future while reclaiming your staff time when you leave inventory management to us.