How going mobile can boost your stores department productivity

123Mobile in the stock room

It's accepted that a well-implemented ERP system can keep your stock room in tune, ensuring that you are stocking the right raw materials, components and finished goods, know their location, and have robust methods for stock checking in place, resulting in low error rates. However, you can reap significant further benefits if you switch to using tablets instead of PCs in the stores department. 123Mobile extends the reach of 123Insight by putting the data you need right in your hands. Here are five key reasons why going mobile can benefit your business.

Free up space

The very definition of using a PC requires the user to be sat or stood in front of it. A large screen, keyboard, mouse and perhaps tower case will take up significant real estate on your desk. A tablet is lightweight, doesn’t require the user to be tied to a desk, and doesn’t need dedicated space to be used. During the COVID-19 pandemic it was also more beneficial for staff to use their own tablets, rather than having to share (and cross-contaminate) a PC used by others.

Reduce initial and running costs

The average ‘office’ PC will cost a three or four figure sum, whereas an Android tablet can be picked up for just over £100. Stock-related tasks are not resource-intensive, so don’t need a powerful computer to run them. You can expect to save money on running costs as well. Not only will any IT maintenance contract be less expensive for a tablet than a PC, but even the power consumption will differ vastly. A standard PC will cost around £145 per year, based on the average working week – compare that to a tablet, which will be comfortably under a fiver for the same period!

On a side note, 123Mobile licences are lower in cost than their desktop counterpart, so if you are simply replacing like for like and not increasing licence count, you’ll save more money here. Remember also that 123Mobile expands onto the shop floor and despatch, allowing further savings to be achieved.

Reduce legwork

When you want to book goods in or check details of a given item, you may need to perform this action in a specific location if the scanner is wired, or at the very least the staff member will be travelling back and forth between items and PC. While a wireless barcode scanner will give you some flexibility, it’s no consolation for having the data on a tablet right in front of you at the stock item location. 123Mobile can also provide you with a guided picking list, giving you the quickest route through your stock room to collect all the items required for a given works order. You’ll spend less time looking for items, with data instantly updated for all staff to see. 

Safety and Quality standard adherence

While you may already be adhering to your company’s safety or quality standards with a desktop PC, using a mobile device will make this even easier. Logging of transactions against individual users is likely to be more accurate if they have their own devices rather than sharing a PC, as users won’t forget to log in/out. 

Improve accuracy

As you work your way through the stock room, 123Mobile allows you to perform rolling ‘ABC’ stock checks, prioritising fast-moving or other priority items, so that you have a tight rein on the accuracy of your data and apportion resources effectively. You can also quickly perform ad-hoc stock checks while you pick items, maximising efficiency. Long-term, this will reduce or perhaps even eradicate stock errors, giving staff across all departments confidence in the data. This can have several positive knock-on effects – purchasing will be laser-focused, and can make strategic decisions, such as larger orders with call-off dates, which in turn may result in lower prices and improved cashflow. Furthermore, all this data will filter down to your management reports, helping you to make intelligent business decisions going forwards.


It’s often difficult to calculate an ROI when looking at making any investment, but the switch to mobile devices makes savings from the start. It runs on hardware that’s cheaper to buy, run and support, and it can significantly reduce the time people spend on common tasks. The more intangible benefits are those that will be seen further down the line, such as the advantages to purchasing, accuracy and immediacy of data, and overall business intelligence. So, the question is not whether going mobile is something that you should consider, but more a case of ‘how soon do you want to start benefiting and saving’?

If you want to see more, you can watch a recent webinar to get a complete walkthrough of 123Mobile in action. Alternatively, if you prefer something more tailored to your requirements, request an online demo today from your Customer Success Representative, which can be done online at your convenience.