The Ultimate Guide to Rental Inventory Management in 2020
Great rental management is possible only with successful inventory management. Here's our guide to managing and tracking rental inventory in...
Raise your hand if you think equipment tracking is difficult. Without the right tools, actions like scheduling rental equipment become productivity roadblocks—and often slow you down. Not to mention that stakes are high when it comes to tracking your prized investments. Coordinating all your assets requires direct access to need-to-know info about rental equipment. And getting this data is easier said than done.
When you rely on pen and paper or a simple spreadsheet to track information about your rental equipment, you’re vulnerable. Traditional tools can lead to manual errors, inefficiencies, higher costs, and worst-case scenario, equipment loss. In this post, we’ll show you a few tactics that companies around the world use to track rental equipment and make their everyday work a little less stressful.
Before you jump in to organize your assets, know that you have choices around how to track rental equipment. We’ve previously shared ways to set up your rental inventory, from creating a product database to labeling your assets. All of that begins with a proper set up in your equipment management system.
At Booqable, we usually separate every product into two tracking types, each behaving differently in the software. Tracking methods are one of Booqable’s core features and the best way to manage diverse types of assets. When setting up your inventory, you can divide equipment into trackable and bulk. Let’s look at the advantages of each method:
In a nutshell, whatever works best for you and your team. Many companies use serial numbers or barcodes to identify trackable items, but honestly, anything that is clear works. It’s common to see short, readable identifiers when users adopt Booqable. We recommend adding logical prefixes as well to have more space for relevant information. The company initials of a sub-rental, for example. Or simply an abbreviation of the model name so everyone at your organization can identify it at a glance.
At some point during your workday, you’ll have to schedule equipment. Perhaps you got a phone call, and it’s time to check availability. Or you need to confirm or decline a request. When planners can better manage availability, they reduce guesswork and plan more accurately.
In Booqable, equipment scheduling is visual. That means you see an indicator telling you whether or not a product is available in real-time. It’s a helpful feature that lets you book equipment in a handful of clicks, without having to worry about overbooking. Let’s break down how to schedule equipment in five simple steps:
You don’t have to specify trackable stock immediately. The benefit of doing this later is that you can increase utilization and reduce gaps in your calendar. Imagine you’re not sure yet which item you want to schedule. Before you pick an identifier, you could launch your calendar to find an underused asset. Or you could plan your stock items in a way that optimizes utilization.
Take the example below. Say a customer wants to rent a KineFinety TERRA 4K from December 14th till December 20th. If you’d have specified #022 instead of #009 for the order on the 15th, the latter would have been available for that request. Now, #009 is unavailable for the entire rental period, even though it’s planned in for a short duration. By scheduling your equipment with optimization in mind, you’ll get the most value out of your assets.
It’s likely that your day-to-day looks something like this. You need to schedule equipment, give stock out to customers, and take the gear back. Coordinating all these movements is complicated, and often leads to manual errors. These preventable mistakes get frustrating and often cause stressful situations.
In Booqable, statuses make it simple to gain control over your rental equipment. If you’re using them correctly, you’ll always know if an asset is in stock, out with a customer, or safely returned to your warehouse. Booqable has a couple of statuses that let everyone at your company know what’s going on.
You can set them to Concept, Reserved, Picked Up, or Returned. Before we wrap up this post, here’s some guidance on which status to use when:
Without the right tools, much of the work equipment managers oversee—scheduling, tracking, and managing equipment—is prone to manual errors. The advantage of bringing these workflows into Booqable is that it gives your employees access to real-time info about your assets. That means less guesswork, fewer inefficiencies, and lower costs. Ready to try moving your rental management processes into Booqable? Start with a free trial, and pick the plan that best matches your equipment management needs.