Five points about wasted talent


Our previous article was about “Who should I inventory with?”. Another issue that has a profound effect on the success of the inventory is talent that is wasted when using employees.

What happens if you use your own employees for making inventory? What do we mean by wasted talent? We made a list of the tasks necessary for performing a colleague’s basic tasks and the energies that invested and thus wasted when stocktaking for an inventory.


Selecting the necessary employee

Approaching the issue from the aspect of the owners, selecting the right employee is an important question. Accordingly, the potential candidate is the colleague who can be used in a number of positions and can hold his/her own in each. This may mean various disciplines, skills, language skills, etc., which the colleague in question attained with significant input. These advantages/skills are naturally less relevant when performing an inventory.

Just think what happens if you use your finance, controlling, or purchasing employees to take stock or check the inventory. These are generally educated persons with degrees and salaries of several hundred thousand forints: using their resources to count products seems off-kilter. Isn’t that a waste?


Obligatory/required training for employees

Employees have to comply with increasingly stringent requirements due to ever tightening regulations. Additionally, selecting and acquiring the appropriate qualification(s) is also a significant problem. Whatever employee position you take into account, a fundamental interest is that the employee acquires quality qualifications. However, making inventory requires only the ability to count and to use a data collector, and still companies involve employees with numerous qualifications.


Familiarity with specialist company departments

A company may have very specialised areas that its employees have become familiar with in the course of their work. For example, the sales activities of a salesperson include a number of tasks, such as learning the data pertaining to the use and handling of goods and payment-related information.

However, this special, sector-specific knowledge is difficult/impossible to utilise for inventory and gives no advantage in making inventory. In fact, it may even skew the results in a negative direction…


Personal skills

A salesperson has to have a number of traits that are less prone to teaching, such as a knowledge of human nature, courteousness, initiative, and the ability to make contact with others.

However, employees with quite different characteristics may be more suited to performing inventory. These include a tolerance of monotony, patience, and reliable arithmetic and concentration skills. Due to the nature of the inventory process, reliable young colleagues may be suitable subjects (familiarity with technology, physical and mental fitness, etc.).



Qualifications are necessary to work as a salesperson; what’s more, clothing salesperson basic qualifications are a prerequisite for completing shop manager training. Moreover, additional skills pertaining to the profession are usually required for progression, such as studying marketing or entrepreneurship (Decree No 21/2010 of 14 May of the Minister of National Development and Economy on the qualifications necessary for pursuing certain industrial and commercial activities). However, as outlined above, younger persons may be potential candidates for performing inventories, which makes it clear that

inventory requires no special, professional qualifications.

As a result, your own employees may be overqualified to perform stocktaking, which may violate their own personal interests, risking their satisfaction, and may result in additional costs paid for their overtime or vacation days.


The question is thus whether it is worth it to use your own employees to perform an inventory? As we have shown, the task does not utilise the knowledge they have, leading to the problem of “wasted talent”. You should also remember that the totality of your employees’ personal skills is far from identical to the skills necessary for stocktaking (commercial and sales skills versus counting skills). As a result, performing the inventory with other than the suitable people is a waste for both the company and the employee.


By: Eszter Puskás & András Takács