Inventory management is primarily about specifying the size and placement of stocked goods. Inventory management is required at different locations within a facility or within multiple locations of a supply network to protect the regular and planned course of production against the random disturbance of running out of materials or goods. The scope of inventory management also concerns the fine lines between replenishment lead time, carrying costs of inventory, asset management, inventory forecasting, inventory valuation, inventory visibility, future inventory price forecasting, physical inventory, available physical space for inventory, quality management, replenishment, returns and defective goods and demand forecasting.
Other definitions of inventory management from across the web:
Involves a retailer seeking to acquire and maintain a proper merchandise assortment while ordering, shipping, handling, and related costs are kept in check.
Systems and processes that identify inventory requirements, set targets, provide replenishment techniques and report actual and projected inventory status.
Handles all functions related to the tracking and management of material. This would include the monitoring of material moved into and out of stockroom locations and the reconciling of the inventory balances. Also may include ABC analysis, lot tracking, cycle counting support etc.
Management of the inventories, with the primary objective of determining.controlling stock levels within the physical distribution function to balance the need for product availability against the need for minimizing stock holding and handling costs.
In business management, inventory consists of a list of goods and materials held available in stock.
An inventory can also be a self examination, a moral inventory.