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ABLE II™ | Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI)

In today's market, you need help managing your inventory and we can help.

Do you want to streamline purchasing and stocking processes, ensure the right hardware inventory is on hand when you need it? Austin’s Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) program is the first of its kind for lock and latch hardware and is designed to improve parts availability and reduce expenses. 

If you find yourself looking for solutions to these common inventory management issues, our ABLE II system can help you solve them:

Let Austin Hardware® help you get the right quality and quantity on the shelf at the right time.

Click here to learn if your business is ready for Austin's ABLE II VMI.

What is ABLE II™ VMI?

Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI)

Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) is exactly what the name suggests. A program in which one of your vendors acts as a partner who takes on the day-to-day tasks and responsibility of managing your inventory.

ABLE II Vendor Managed Inventory Solutions:

Click Here to learn more about what VMI is and how it can impact you and your business.


What are the benefits of having a supplier manage MY inventory?  In a word … $MONEY$.

Now that’s obviously an oversimplification. But when you break it down and look at all the different parts of the replenishment cycle our ABLE II program can impact, it becomes easy to see the benefits.

ABLE II™ VMI Benefits :

Click Here to learn more about why VMI is so important to you and your bottom line.

Consigned ABLE II™ VMI

Consignment Inventory Management

Inventory that is still owned by the supplier (Austin Hardware®), but you as our customer, have it on hand. When your business uses or sells the inventory, we THEN get paid.  This option allows you to free up capital that would otherwise be needed to purchase the inventory in advance, creating a form of financial security and freedom for you and your business.

The basics:


Click Here to learn more about Consigned VMI

Non-Consigned ABLE II™ VMI

Non-Consigned Inventory Management

The more traditional Vendor Managed Inventory program is Non-Consigned VMI.  In a Non-Consignment program, you as our customer pay for the inventory as it’s brought in, and whenever replenishment is necessary.

The basics:

Click Here to learn more about Non-Consigned VMI

VMI and CMI - Differences

Vendor Managed vs. Customer Managed Inventory Programs

Both Vendor-Managed Inventory (VMI) and Customer-Managed Inventory (CMI) are inventory management programs that can help your company run leaner through greater operational efficiency.

  • The vendor sets up the tools for both VMI and CMI
  • All the benefits of vendor consolidation are realized in both VMI and CMI

The primary difference lies in the responsibility for managing inventory. 

CMI can be a great first step for companies that are not ready to commit to a complete VMI program.

You can learn more details on the differences between VMI and CMI HERE.

How to Choose a VMI or CMI Partner

The Right Partner Makes a HUGE Difference

The selection of a VMI or CMI provider is significant. You're engaging in a relationship with a PARTNER to help manage replenishment. This partner serves as an extension of your staff, and just like you would with any new hire, knowing you're making the right decision is critical.

Just some of the things you'll need to know include:

  • How much experience does this prospective partner have with VMI and CMI?
  • What is their technology platform?
  • What KPIs do they measure, and what will reporting look like?
  • How do they manage stock levels?
  • How do they handle changes in inventory requirements?
  • Do they offer other value-added services, such as custom packaging or kitting?

You can learn more about finding the right VMI partner HERE.

Are You Ready To Save Time & Money On Your Inventory?

In your business, you have a multitude of buy-sell relationships.

Wouldn’t having a partner be more efficient and beneficial? With a Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) program, you can have just that!

Aside from having a close relationship with your supplier, there are a variety of benefits to utilizing a VMI program inventory management method, such as cost savings, forecasting, inventory management and more.

It really is that easy.

"Since my company entered into a vendor managed inventory program with Austin, our service levels and in-stock position on our parts have never been better.  We consolidated 23 suppliers down to one, Austin. 

Now we only have one invoice to review, one shipment to check in and we are in stock 99% of the time!  Austin has one of the best customer service teams we work with, I would recommend this program to anyone who needs to take control of their inventory and be sure to have the parts you need on the shelves!"

VMI Reviewer 1

Gary from Ohio

"I wanted to send along some great news. We have experienced a few problems with shipping over the years, but the solutions that you put in place over the last few weeks have been very positive. On another note, Tom and Emma, the Vendor Managed Inventory team that I have been working with, have done a great job responding to concerns and questions in a timely fashion. That fact is another reason our VMI program is successful and getting stronger every day. Our overall numbers continue to increase and we are looking forward to the growth in 2017."
VMI Reviewer 2

Shawn from Texas