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Inventory Systems Improvement

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Essay title: Inventory Systems Improvement


TO: Hugh McCauley

FROM: Team B

Date: October 20, 2005

REF: Inventory Systems Improvement

Business Requirements

Improvements to Riordan Manufacturing inventory processes require the automation of the company’s inventory system. Team B recommends that a dedicated computer system and database be used to store information about items on hand, in addition keeping track of quantities and bin locations. The database will also be able to keep track of those items that have been ordered and when they are expected to arrive at the manufacturing facility. The system will utilize a barcode system placed on each container holding a part or assembly. When the part is pulled from the inventory, the barcodes are scanned and the quantity subtracted from the inventory levels. In turn, this will be automatically added to the list of parts for replenishment. Barcodes will also be added to the documentation used during manufacturing and when a part is identified as needed, the assembly line worker or assembler can scan the part number or numbers that they need and those parts would be ordered for delivery the next day from the supply warehouse.

For the implementation of this system, handheld devices similar to Personal Digital Assistants (PDA) with a built in scanner and wireless capabilities will be used. This will allow these devices to be used anywhere within the company’s facility and still be able to access the database.

Various devices are available with barcode capabilities. The Hewlett-Packard (HP) iPaq is a handheld unit running Windows® Pocket PC. Lightweight and compact, this device will be easily holstered to employee’s belts. In addition, such handheld units have multiple accessories available and are compatible for future projects and expandability. A barcode reader can be directly attached to the device via a PCM/CIA adapter. This will eliminate telephone-style cords to tangle and catch on shelving units or other furniture.

The handhelds specified for this project are compatible with many different databases. If current inventory databases are maintained, intermediary software plug-ins may be needed. However, current database systems such as Oracle and SQL are robust enough to handle all of Riordan’s inventory needs. As a result, growth of our warehouse facilities, inventory, and business in general will be easily integrated into these systems.

To manage the new databases, two new servers

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