Free Hotel Inventory Checklist

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Free Hotel Inventory Checklist

Managing inventory in any business is no easy task, but as any hotel manager or F&B controller will know, managing inventory in a hotel setting comes with its own unique set of challenges. 

Firstly, hotel inventory management often involves food and beverage control across not one, but multiple bars and restaurants. It may also involve multi-venue management, with items being ordered, transferred and distributed across a number of venues. Lastly, inventory often extends beyond just food and beverages into items such as linen, cleaning products, toiletries and more - basically anything that is ordered, stocked and used for the day-to-day running of the business.

Which is why we’ve put together a free checklist for hotel inventory that any business can use, whether one or multiple locations, to help you stay on top of your hotel’s inventory more easily. 

Hotel Inventory Checklist

1. Decide on your inventory method

In today’s world there are various methods you can use to manage inventory. Here are three of the main methods hotels are using:

Manual pen-and-paper or spreadsheet method

Most hotels have used a manual inventory system at one time or another. This usually begins as a sheet-to-shelf process where someone literally counts every item of stock on a shelf and marks it down on an inventory sheet (or sometimes a piece of paper). This information then either remains paper-based, or is sometimes manually transferred over to a spreadsheet. The upside is that anyone can get started with this method. It’s cheap, easy and helps you to have some record of your inventory. The downside is that it’s extremely time-consuming, often taking days or even weeks each month, is prone to human error and makes transferring data from one month to the next difficult. 

On-premise inventory management software

On-premise inventory systems usually run from machines that are installed on-site within a hotel. The benefit of on-premise systems is that they don’t rely on an internet connection, and are secure. However, as the Holiday Inn found, the downside is that they can be expensive to install, difficult to use (and train hotel staff on), and if there’s an update or change required you’ll often need a physical visit and upgrade from the company it’s procured from. 

Cloud-based inventory management software

This is where we come in at growyze. Seeing the common, yet annoyingly complex, problems hotels and the hospitality industry generally face, we wanted to create a cloud-based inventory management system that increases daily efficiency. 

Cloud-based inventory management software like growyze allows hotels to complete stocktakes, store information, purchase items from suppliers and generate reports, all from a single system. Stocktakes can be completed by scanning the barcodes of items to store an accurate count of inventory. Purchases are then made from one single system (no more phone, email and written orders using various supplier portals), and once items are delivered they can be reconciled against the original order and invoice.

The benefit of cloud-based systems is that they’re modern, easy-to-use and their cloud-based nature means that all staff members (across locations) can complete stocktakes and add or edit information simultaneously. They also keep a single digital trail of every transaction, every stocktake and records of actual vs theoretical COGS, making it easy to spot mistakes and get to the bottom of discrepancies. 

2. Create your stock categories

Once you’ve determined which inventory stock method you’ll be using, you’ll then need to map out your various inventory categories and decide how to organise this information.

One way to organise inventory is via area, for example:

  • Housekeeping (items such as toiletries, linen, hygiene products)
  • Dry items (cleaning products, concierge items)
  • Hospitality areas (bars, restaurants, cafés, gift shops)

You may also use a system for multi-venue management which allows you to have an inventory account per location. This means that an Area Manager or Head of Operations can retain control and visibility across locations, but that each localised manager and team only has access to the information and reporting they need. 

3. Complete your first hotel stocktake

Once you have your systems organised it’s time to complete that all-important first stocktake. It’s natural for this to be time-consuming but is essential to giving you a starting point of the stock that’s within your control.

In most cases you can get various team members involved and allow them to “own” their areas of stocktaking. This distributes responsibility and makes the count far faster (and likely more fun!). 

At the end of your first stocktake you should aim to have a full record of your closing quantity of stock, as well as a list of the stock items you’ll need to continually measure.

4. Monitor and analyse discrepancies

In any fast-moving business like a hotel it’s natural to have some discrepancies between the amount of stock you think you should have vs the amount you actually have. What’s more important is being able to identify the cause of said discrepancies. 

For example, is it because a supplier didn’t deliver the right amount of items, or perhaps items are being wasted due to expired sell-by dates, or human error, without being tracked within your systems. 

Locating and preventing discrepancies reduces losses, contributing to a far healthier bottom line and creating accountability across the organisation. 

5. Count… then count again!

Once you’ve completed the first stocktake and implemented your hotel’s inventory system, it’s easy to forget all about it. The key, however, is to then implement a regular stocktake procedure that ensures you keep on top of your stock on a more regular basis.

Most hotels will run a monthly stocktake after this point, beginning with the closing number of stock from the previous stocktake to give them an accurate point at which to start. 

With the right steps in place, managing inventory should hopefully become an easy part of the everyday management of your hotel, enabling you with the right information to make better daily decisions. 


growyze is here to help your hotel thrive

At growyze we support hotels to find their most effective stock control system yet. 

Our app centralises and simplifies many BOH processes to help you implement a stock control procedure, manage suppliers, add recipes and track waste, all from within a single app. Add multiple team members (at no extra cost!), generate reports and have accurate, daily information on where your hotel is profitable and where it’s making losses. 

Book a demo to see how growyze can support your hotel’s inventory management system today. 

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