DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION OF AN AUTOMATED INVENTORY CONTROL SYSTEM FOR NIGERIAN BREWERIES PLC, ENUGU
This research work is concise and generally summarizes the activities duly carried out in the design and implementation of an automated inventory control system for NIGERIAN BREWERIES PLC, ENUGU. The system is designed to efficiently handle the movement and tracking of goods. The manual method is labour intensive, costly, and error prone and cannot ensure that the inventory remains up-to-date due to oversight and internal shrinkage. With the proposed new system, inventory can be updated in real time without product movement, scanning, or human involvement. The automated system helps in; (i) the determination of inventory status, (ii) registration of new stock, (iii)registration of new customers, (iv) supply of goods to registered customers, (v) printing of transaction invoices for customers for transactions that have taken place as well as viewing the available transactions that were carried out at a particular time. The study outlines the main concepts of the analysis and design methodology of the proposed system, compares it to the existing and goes further to explain the design and implementation of the system. The tools used were; Visual Basic 10 and Microsoft access 2007. The fact finding techniques employed is interview, observation, online and library research.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Nigerian Breweries Plc., incorporated in 1946, is the pioneer and largest brewing company in Nigeria. Its first bottle of beer, STAR Lager, rolled off the bottling lines of its Lagos Brewery in June 1949. Other breweries were subsequently commissioned by the company, including Aba Brewery in 1957, Kaduna Brewery in 1963, and Ibadan Brewery in 1982. In September 1993, the company acquired its fifth brewery in Enugu state, and in October 2003, its sixth brewery, sited at Ama in Enugu. Ama Brewery is the largest brewery in Nigeria and one of the most modern worldwide. Operations at Enugu brewery were discontinued in 2004 leaving the company with five operational breweries.
The company has a portfolio of high-quality brands, including Star Lager Beer (launched in 1949); Gulder Lager Beer (1970); Maltina (1976); Legend Extra Stout (1992); and Amstel Malta (1994). The company also re-launched Heineken Lager into the Nigerian market in June 1998.
Justifiably, the company has the problem of keeping adequate record of goods transfer and since it is done manually, associated problems of insecurity, high cost of operation and delay in supply arise. Data processing in Nigerian Breweries PLC is presently carried out using people, pens, and paper to control stock and inventory therefore, I decided to embark on this project to design automated inventory control system software that will help eradicate these ugly measures.
An inventory control system contains a list of orders to be filled and then prompts workers to pick the necessary items, and provides them with packaging and shipping information. Inventory control may be used to automate a sales order fulfilment process and also manage in and outward material of hardware.
Automation is the replacement of human workers by technology. For optimal sales and inventory management process, robust functionality is needed for managing logistics facilities. Warehouse management functions for inventory control cover internal warehouse movements and storage and its support helps in the recording and tracking of materials on basis of both quantity and value.
This application takes care of all supply orders reducing cost for warehousing, transportation while improving customer service. It significantly improves inventory turns, optimizes flow of goods and shortens routes within warehouse and distribution centres. It also improves cash flow, visibility and decision making providing efficient execution of tasks using this fast and reliable computerised method.
The design and development of an automated inventory control system for the Nigerian Breweries PLC will no doubt bring immeasurable relief from the problems associated with the manual system.