Large vs. Small 3rd Party Physical Inventory Services
The inventory industry is basically two dimensional. On the one hand, there are a couple of huge international companies which are well established with offices throughout the United States and all over the world. On the other hand, there are regional companies with concentrations in certain areas of the U.S. and in other countries overseas.
In many cases, people tend to think, “Bigger is Better.” “They must be the largest for a reason.” However, that line of reasoning is not always accurate.
If a large company sends crews to a group of stores and numerous problems arise, the issues can be dismissed as an anomaly, a minor blip on a spreadsheet. Store managers are told it will be better next time and that is about all the follow-up that can be expected. There isn’t the level of concern because a large company performs hundreds of thousands of inventories per year. They’re focused on the bigger picture.
A smaller, regional company doesn’t have that luxury. With only a few thousand, or even just a few hundred inventories per year, any service issues are greatly magnified and elevated with more immediacy. Poor practices are stopped and fixed before they can become bad habits.
Regional companies are never “too big to fail.” Every client, every inventory, every auditor becomes a critical piece of the puzzle. As a result, day-to-day operations are much more consistent, relationships are stronger, and the level of service is more dependable. The product (which in this case is a Service) was designed specifically for that client’s needs.
Below are some other key differences.
Big Global Company
- Less personal attention (getting “lost in the shuffle”)
- Main focus on Productivity
- Auditors can do many types of inventory counts
- More widespread coverage
- Greater 1 on 1 communication with a dedicated Account Manager
- Main focus on Accuracy
- Auditors become Experts at specific types of inventory counts
- Regionalized coverage