This is essential, to find out what has been going on with your stock.
Now to do this, you need some planning. A typical client of ours tends to need about four working days to count their stock. So budget accordingly, e.g. one person four days or four people one day. This is a personal preference. Some prefer to do it in one hit and get it over, while others prefer to do a rolling stocktake over a few days.
I suggest that if you are going to do it in one hit, do a trial stocktake a few days earlier. Pick a tiny department to acquaint yourself with the procedure first. Although you may have done many stocktakes in the past, it has probably been a year since you have last done one. Lots have happened in the meantime, so things do tend to have been forgotten. Go over the correct computer procedures. The more you know, the less time and money it will cost you while extra staff are counting.
We will be doing some webinars on this all soon.
Try and move now as much stock as you can out of your shop. Return to a supplier, have an EOFY sale, etc. The less you have in the shop, the less to count.
Okay, you need to schedule. Set actual dates and times for the stocktake. Pick quiet periods to avoid distractions. I recommend that you break down the shop into manageable units. In my experience, it is best to make these units smaller than bigger. You can always do more units in one day if you have time. It's a pain to half a unit left for the next day.
Now make sure that your point-of-sale system is up to date. All the relevant stock receiving and sales information is entered. The last thing you want to do during a stocktake is hunt around in your files for correct stock information.
Go over the shop and make some order. Check your stock is tidy and in logical order. This will make it much easier to count.
To be continued...