Dump Bins — Oh no!

It’s a grocery store’s dream—the “dump bin”. Set up a barrel, fill it with mixed product, attach a splashy sign screaming an unbeatable sale price and watch the customers buy, buy, buy.

It’s an inventory auditor’s nightmare—the “dump bin”. There’s no way to organize the different flavors within the bin, so as they work through it they won’t be able to tell what’s been scanned versus what has not. And they can’t remove all of that product out of the bin, put it on the floor in the middle of a busy aisle, count it and then return it to the bin.

So what’s the solution?

There are three effective ways to capture this product as part of your inventory:

  • Have your store associates “pre-count” the product and provide totals to the inventory service, or reconcile at the end of the physical inventory count
  • Have an Inventory auditor count the product and transfer to a shopping cart as it’s counted, returning it to the bin once all product has been accounted for
  • Have an inventory count approximately ½ of the bin, then double that count

Option #2 is the most accurate method of capturing this product. Option #3 is perhaps the most efficient method.

The popularity of dump bins within Grocery stores is literally exploding right now. Chains across the country are finding this an extremely effective sales tool and are using this technique all throughout their stores. But don’t let it get in the way of an accurate inventory. Think about which methodology works best for your business, and make the decision on how to capture this merchandise in advance of inventory day.