Stocktaking vs. Stock Control – Comparison & Differences


Stocktaking and Stock Control are two kinds of concepts that are widely used worldwide for different purposes. Both are the most critical processes in inventory management. However, both concepts are interrelated; there are crucial differences between them.

Main Difference

Stocktaking involves physically counting and recording the inventory. On the other hand, Stock Control is a process of managing inventory levels to reduce pricing while meeting customer demand. Stocktaking is conducted at particular intervals throughout the year, while Stock Control is an ongoing and continuous process. Let us discuss the significant differences between Stocktaking and Stock Control in detail.

What is Stocktaking?

Stocktaking is a highly used concept in many fields, especially inventory management. It is critical for ensuring accurate inventory records and identifying discrepancies. Some tools for Stocktaking are required, such as a calculator, counting sheet, and inventory management. Moreover, Stocktaking is conducted at specific intervals throughout the year. An inventory manager or team usually manages it.

Furthermore, it is a systematic process that is conducted annually or semi-annually. Correction of discrepancies and inaccuracies in inventory records is the central aspect of Stocktaking. In addition, Stocktaking analyses of inventory valuation and cost of goods sold.

What is Stock Control?

Stock Control is an essential aspect of inventory management that is highly using in all over the world. It is a continuous process that involves managing the inventory levels to ensure they are maintained optimally. The outcome of this concept is to reduce the pricing of holding inventory while ensuring enough stock is on hand to meet customer demand. Moreover, the methodology of Stock Control is setting reorder points, monitoring stock levels, and placing orders with suppliers. In addition, Stock Control is managed by an inventory management software system.

Key Differences between Stocktaking and Stock Control

  1. Stock Control is an ongoing and continuous process, while the frequency of Stocktaking is periodic that is typically done annually.
  2. Stock Control is managed through inventory management software, while Stocktaking is operated manually.
  3. Stocktaking is critical for ensuring accurate inventory records, while Stock Control is essential for efficient inventory management.
  4. Stock Control requires analytic tools, while a calculator, counting sheet, and inventory management software are needed for Stocktaking.
  5. The inventory manager or team manages stocktaking. On the other hand, Stock Control is driven by inventory management software.

Comparison chart

Features         Stocktaking Stock Control
Process Periodic, conducted throughout the year Ongoing and continuous process
Managed by Inventory manager or team Inventory management software
Tools Required calculator, counting sheet, inventory management Analytics tool, inventory management system
Critical for Ensuring accurate inventory management Efficient management inventory


As the whole discussion, we conclude that Stocktaking and Stock Control are different concepts. Both have additional functionality, purposes, process, frequency, and others.

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