What is an inventory count?

Point of Sale (POS) Glossary

Inventory count is also known as stock take, inventory reconciliation, and doing inventory. It is the process of physically counting every item in stock. This is often done using a handheld scanner to speed the process. However, it can be accomplished manually by writing down counts for every stock-keeping unit (SKU).

Some point of sale systems track stock in real-time, and inventory count must be done occasionally to reflect theft, breakage, inventory movement to other locations, waste, internal use, shipment errors, and various write-offs. Other POS systems do not track inventory, and the inventory count is used to generate current stock numbers.

Inventory count would need to be done more frequently for those point of sale systems that do not keep real-time counts. It would also be more difficult to pinpoint reasons for stock discrepancies in these cases.

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