Inventory control system

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An inventory control system is a process for managing and locating objects or materials. In common usage, the term may also refer to just the software components.

Modern inventory control systems often rely upon barcodes and radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags to provide automatic identification of inventory objects. Inventory objects could include any kind of physical asset: merchandise, consumables, fixed assets, circulating tools, library books, or capital equipment. To record an inventory transaction, the system uses a barcode scanner or RFID reader to automatically identify the inventory object, and then collects additional information from the operators via fixed terminals (workstations), or mobile computers.


An inventory control system may be used to automate an order fulfillment process. Such a system contains a list of orders to be received, and then prompts workers to pick the necessary items, and provides them with packaging and shipping.

An inventory system also manages in and outwards material of hardware.

Real-time inventory control systems may use wired, mobile terminals to record inventory transactions at the moment they occur. A wired LAN transmits the transaction information to a mobile network.

Physical inventory counting and cycle counting are features of many inventory control systems which can enhance the organization.


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