Inventory Management Woes? How CAFM Software Can Help Facilities Managers

Inventory Management Woes? How CAFM Software Can Help Facilities Managers

By Uros Trojanovic

By Uros Trojanovic

October 26, 2023

6 min read

In the ever-changing world of facilities management, good inventory management is one of the keys to success. As a facilities manager, it is your responsibility to manage the various systems within a facility. Keeping track of and managing inventory is one of the most important aspects of this role. In today’s digital world, there are many tools and solutions available to help you manage your facilities more efficiently. CAFM software is one of these tools.

Understanding the Challenge

Before we get into the details of how CAFM can change inventory management, it’s important to understand facilities managers' challenges. Inadequate inventory management can result in some issues, such as:

  1. Overstocking or Understocking: Overstating or underestimating the amount of stock available Striking a balance between the right amount of stock available and not overstating it or underestimating it can be a challenge. Overstocking can lead to capital and storage issues, while understating can cause operational disruptions. 
  2. Wastage: Waste Excess stock can lead to unnecessary or expired supplies. Not only does this affect the bottom line, but it can also harm the environment. 
  3. Operational Disruptions: Downtime When critical supplies run out, it can cause daily operations to grind to a halt. This can lead to lost revenue, angry customers, and a drop in employee morale. 
  4. Inaccurate Reporting: Inaccurate Reporting Manual tracking methods can lead to inaccurate reporting. Without accurate data, it can be difficult for facilities managers to make decisions. Establishing realistic goals and optimising inventory levels can be challenging.

The Power of CAFM Software

When it comes to inventory management, many challenges need to be addressed. CAFM software provides the tools to help facilities managers overcome these challenges. Let’s take a closer look at the benefits of CAFM software and how it can help you improve your facilities’ inventory management. 

1. Real-time Inventory Tracking

Traditional inventory management systems relied on manual processes that could be time-consuming and prone to mistakes. However, CAFM software provides facilities managers with real-time inventory visibility. This allows them to monitor stock levels and consumption patterns, as well as item usage.

With real-time tracking, there’s no room for guesswork. If a facility experiences unusually high usage of an item, CAFM software will alert managers right away so they can reorder more supplies to meet the facility’s operational needs.

Read more on The Role of CAFM Systems in Tracking and Maintaining Facility Assets

2. Automated Reordering

One of the best things about CAFM software is that it allows you to automate reordering. In the past, you had to manually review inventory levels, create purchase orders, and coordinate with suppliers. Not only was this a time-consuming process, but it was also prone to human mistakes. With CAFM software, you can set up a system that automatically reorders supplies when you set predefined thresholds.

For example, if you want to maintain at least 50 units of a key supply item, CAFM software can automatically generate a purchase order once the stock drops below that threshold. Automating this process ensures that you never run out of critical items and reduces the risk of overstock.

3. Data Analytics and Forecasting

Data analytics is revolutionising inventory management. CAFM software is at the forefront of this technology. By analysing historical data, these systems can accurately forecast future inventory needs. By analysing usage trends, seasonal patterns and other pertinent information, facilities managers can make informed decisions on when and how to restock. 

If a facility typically has a higher demand for heating during the winter, CAFM software will be able to predict this demand and recommend higher inventory levels in the run-up to the cold season. This predictive planning allows facilities managers to plan, reducing the likelihood of operational issues caused by supply shortages.

4. Streamlined Vendor Management

Managing multiple vendors can be a logistical challenge for facilities managers. Each vendor may have different lead times, pricing structures, and delivery schedules. CAFM software can centralise vendor information, making it easier to compare prices, negotiate contracts, and ensure timely deliveries.

With all vendor data accessible in one place, facilities managers can quickly identify which vendors offer the best terms and pricing. This streamlines the procurement process, reduces the administrative burden, and ultimately leads to cost savings.

5. Cost Control

CAFM software helps with cost control by improving inventory levels, cutting down on waste, and automating processes. This allows facilities managers to allocate resources more effectively, resulting in cost savings. For instance, real-time inventory visibility allows managers to identify and eliminate items that are redundant or out-of-date, reducing unnecessary costs.

Automating reorder processes also means that facilities only buy what they need when they need it, avoiding overstock and the associated costs. These cost-control actions not only improve your bottom line, but they free up resources to focus on other important facilities needs.

6. Depreciation

Advanced CAFM software helps with calculating the depreciation of FM inventory to assist with financial reporting, and cut down manual effort by the Finance team.

7. Enhanced Reporting

If you're a facilities manager, you know how important it is to have accurate and up-to-date reports. CAFM software helps you do just that by providing you with comprehensive reports that show you how your inventory is performing, how your consumption is changing, and where you can make improvements.

You can customise the reports to give you the exact info you need, like a monthly breakdown of your inventory costs, a department-by-department breakdown of usage, or even a forecast of what your inventory needs will be in the future. With this data, you can make decisions that will help you optimise your inventory management and save money.

Read more on Top Features to Look for in Modern CAFM Software Solutions

Implementation and Integration

Implementing CAFM software to your facilities management toolbox is a smart move that requires thoughtful planning. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Assessment: Start with a thorough evaluation of your existing inventory management processes. Figure out where there are pain points and gaps and where improvements need to be made.
  • Vendor Selection: Choose the right CAFM software vendor. Consider factors like scalability, customisation, and customer support. It’s important to choose a CAFM software solution that matches your specific needs and goals.
  • Integration: Integrate the software seamlessly into your existing systems and workflow. This may involve working with your IT department to make sure the CAFM system is compatible and that data is exchanged between the software and other software in your facilities. 
  • Training: Train your team properly to get the most out of the software. With the right training, your staff will be able to take full advantage of the software’s capabilities.
  • Continuous Improvement: Regularly review and refine your inventory management processes to adapt to changing needs and technologies. The flexibility of CAFM software allows you to adjust and optimise as your facilities evolve. 


In today’s ever-evolving facilities management landscape, it’s important to stay ahead of your inventory management challenges. CAFM software helps facilities managers to automate processes, manage expenses and make informed decisions based on data. By using CAFM software to manage your inventory, you’ll be able to overcome your inventory management challenges and take your facilities to the next level.

Don’t forget that good inventory management is only one part of your facility’s success story.

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