Solar Companies: Inventory Management Just For You

Inventory Management for Solar Companies

Finale Inventory provides a comprehensive inventory management for solar companies. Installers can accurately track serial numbers of  solar panels or other equipment used in installation with our integrated barcode scanning capabilities.  The cloud based inventory solution provides complete control over your warehouse to save you time conducting physical inventory and saves you money on purchasing decisions.

inventory management for solar companies, Solar Companies: Inventory Management Just For You

Using software designed for inventory management for solar companies allows to you tight control of your stock.  Inventory management is a critical balancing act for a business owner:  too little and you have a crew unable to work productively, too much and you tie up cash in inventory that may lose value before it is used in installations.

Having too much inventory in the solar industry will be a losing proposition due to the rapid pace of innovation.  With each passing year, there continues to be major advancements in solar panel technology which results in improvements in efficiency and energy storage.  Other required equipment such as batteries and inverters are becoming smarter and cheaper.  As a result, outdated equipment will continue to depreciate in your warehouse, and it will be challenging offload them with significantly discounting with customers wanting the latest technology.

Not having enough inventory can decrease if you stock out or do not have enough stock for multiple installations.  Productivity will wane if your installation crews are blocked or delayed as waiting for critical pieces to complete the installation.   An unhappy customer will add to your frustration and will heighten the need for inventory management software to effectively manage your products.

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Running out of a stock is a sure way to hinder your growth, and Finale has several ways to create reorder points to let you know when products need to be ordered.

The simplest method of inventory control reordering is the “Min/Max” reordering is set-up with two static inputs. The “Min” value represents a stock level that triggers a reorder and the “Max” value represents a new targeted stock level following the reorder.  This reordering method is ideal there product sales are predictable and for a customer who wants a simple configuration to assist with reordering.

With Finale’s advanced restock forecasting capability using product sales velocity data, customers can go beyond the static min/max reordering method and establish sophisticated dynamic reordering points to make smart dynamic purchasing decisions.

Leveraging the sales velocity or historical sales of a product, Finale will automatically calculate dynamic reorder points based on your inputs – supplier lead time, desired safety stock, and expected sales growth — to make smarter, faster-purchasing decisions.

The purchasing and replenishment capability will constantly keep track of your stock and alert you when product stock at a specific location goes below the threshold. With a couple of mouse clicks, Finale will automatically create a purchase order for your suppliers.

Tracking serial numbers of solar panels with a barcode scanner

Similar to most products with long warranties (i.e. automobiles), every home or commercial solar installation includes a warranty for the solar panels.  A solar panel has two warranties: a performance and equipment guarantee. A solar panel’s performance warranty will typically guarantee 90% production at 10 years and 80% at 25 years.  An equipment warranty will typically guarantee 10-12 years without failing.

inventory management for solar companies, Solar Companies: Inventory Management Just For You

To track the warranty of each solar panel for a home or commercial installation, every solar panel has a barcode printed or etched on the panel from the manufacturer.  As an installer, you need records that are easily accessible so you need to have an archive of every solar panel linked back to the installation project and installation date.

Finale’s serial number tracking allows you to easily track serial numbers on your products. We make it easy to track an unlimited amount of serial numbers from the time of receiving to the installation of your products.

One could attempt to record the serial number by pen and paper for each installation.  However, recording serial manually would be prone to human error.  The number of errors that a worker can make while recording the serial number is large, and each mistake has the potential to snowball when the serial numbers are used for warranty purposes.

Barcoding reduces the possibility of forgetting or skipping a number during entry, running into illegible handwriting or typing in the wrong number accidentally, and it will help your company maintain accuracy in its data entries. This ultimately saves you time, energy, and money.

The most meticulous of workers will make mistakes recording the serial numbers, and barcoding gets you one step ahead by mitigating accuracy issues by avoiding human transcription altogether.  Finale makes it manageable to track your products and keep up with these complex tasks with software designed for inventory management for solar companies.

To record the serial number, one would just need to simply scan the serial number located on the solar panel.  From there, the data is then transferred to the cloud servers via WiFi or a USB cable.  If you are the installation, it is also possible to send transmit the data via WiFi using a smartphone hotspot.

Once the data is stored in the cloud, the software generates a comprehensive audit trail of stock changes and will accurately track each individual solar panel.   Business owners will be able to run off multiple reports.   Business owners will be able to easily find an individual solar panel or see find all the serial numbers used at a specific installation.

Multi-warehouse support

To service in a large geographic region, many installers store the panels in multiple locations and need robust solutions for inventory management for solar companies.  With a cloud-based interface, Finale enables a business owner to have full visibility of your inventory in each warehouse location to ensure a smooth running business.

Visibility of your inventory will tell you how much quantity of each item is stored at each location without wasting precious time. This allows you to streamline decision making as you can assign shipments from a location that has sufficient stock and closest proximity.

With a cloud inventory management solution, every location will have a real-time view as stock changes are made at every location.  As products are being shipped from the Pasadena warehouse, your Irvine warehouse will be immediately made aware of changes.

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