Working with a 3rd party to count your inventory

Modified on Tue, 25 Apr 2023 at 12:23 PM


It's fairly typical for our clients to hire a 3rd party to come in and count the inventory at your store.  When you do, we have some pointers listed below.  



Most inventory companies want a comma-separated file that contains the following data:

  1. The primary product codes
  2. The alternate SKUs for products
  3. The product descriptions
  4. Product price
  5. Product cost

There's a report built especially for this purpose called the "RIS Inventory Export" report.  If you don't see it on your list of reports contact our support team.  the file contains "last cost" and "average cost" - you'll need to tell the inventory company which cost you want to use when they generate an inventory report for you (if that do that).

IMPORTANT NOTE:  Make sure that if the file is a CSV/comma separated file that someone does not open it with excel unless they are importing the data into Excel properly.  If you don't do it properly Excel will strip off leading zeros on your product codes which will make it unusable when it comes time to import the file again.  The inventory company should be well aware of the dangers of this and have instructions for you on that basis.


1.  They set aside any products that were not in the export file.

These companies typically take the file you exported and load it into their counting devices.  This gives them the ability to do reporting on it later and should alert them when they run into a product that's not in your system.  You should have staff ready to cope with these products as the inventory count is taking place so when it comes time to import the file the system will find it.

2.  That they provide you with a value report

Not all but most do this for you.  At the end of their count process, they compile a report with the value of your inventory at cost and at retail.

3.  That the file they generate contains a column called "ProductCode", "Quantity", and if possible "EntryDate" that is comma separated.

You'll then import this file into the system so that your inventory will be updated.  You can do additional reporting on variances, etc.


We have a couple of other articles on how to conduct a physical inventory count/import files, etc that you should read prior to engaging in this process.  Links are below:

Preparing for your first physical inventory count

Conducting a physical inventory count



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