BUSINESS CENTRAL WAREHOUSE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (WMS)
“A warehouse management system (WMS) is a software application, designed to support warehouse or distribution center management and staff. They facilitate management in their daily planning, organizing, staffing, directing, and controlling the utilization of available resources, to move and store materials into, within, and out of a warehouse, while supporting staff in the performance of material movement and storage in and around a warehouse.”
Business Central Definition
“To support the physical handling of items on the zone and bin level, all information must be traced for each transaction or movement in the warehouse. This is managed in the Warehouse Entry table. Each transaction is stored in a warehouse register.
Warehouse documents and a warehouse journal are used to register item movements in the warehouse. Every time that an item in the warehouse is moved, received, put away, picked, shipped, or adjusted, warehouse entries are registered to store the physical information about zone, bin, and quantity.”
To align with the financial concepts of purchases and sales, Business Central warehouse documentation refers to the following terms for item flow in the warehouse.
|INBOUND FLOW||Items moving into the warehouse location, such as purchases and inbound transfers.|
|INTERNAL FLOW||Items moving inside the warehouse location, such as production components and output.|
|OUTBOUND FLOW||Items moving out of the warehouse location, such as sales and outbound transfers.|
|BIN||A physical storage unit that is used for placing and storing items. This can be anything from a small container box to an open space on a pallet rack. It is the smallest unit of the warehouse logical structure.|
|BIN CONTENT||The contents that are contained within the bin, including the physical quantity of items in the bin, as well as information about volume and status (e.g. defective). Bin content is the basis for the pick and put-away creation in the program.|
|BIN RANKING||A measure for prioritizing replenishment movements. This indicates which bin should be replenished first. A bin with a high bin ranking number has a higher priority than one of a lower number|
|BIN REPLENISHMENT||Relocating material from a bulk storage area to an order pick storage area, and documenting this relocation. This is so that the proper quantity of items is maintained for that bin so that the performance of the warehouse is kept at an optimum level.|
|BIN TYPE||A classification for the type of activity that is performed from a particular bin. For example, a bin that has the bin type “receiving,” should contain only items that have been received into the warehouse but have not been put away. Some examples of bin types are: receiving, shipping, picking and put away.|
|BREAK BULK||To break a larger unit of measure down to a lower unit of measure during the picking process in order to fulfill the correct quantity for the picking order.|
|CROSS DOCK||To move items directly from the receiving area to the shipping area, thereby minimizing handling and storage and allowing sales orders to be shipped sooner. Noun and adjective form: cross-dock|
|DELIVERY NOTE||A note that accompanies a shipment and that lists the items in the shipment.|
|CYCLE COUNTING||An inventory accuracy audit technique where inventory is counted on a cyclic schedule rather than once a year.
A cycle inventory count is usually taken on a regular defined basis (often more frequently for high-value or fast-moving items and less frequently for low-value or slow-moving items).
Most effective cycle counting systems require the counting of a certain number of items every workday with each item counted at a prescribed frequency
|EXPECTED RECEIPT DATE||The date, calculated by program, on which an inbound item will be available for picking.|
|FIXED BIN||A bin that is dedicated to hold only a specific pre-determined item or type of item. This type of bin is not used as a floating bin.|
|FLOATING BIN||Any bin that is not fixed to store a specific item or type of item and are used to store items as they come into the warehouse.|
|PICK||To physically withdraw from inventory items to be shipped or components of items to be assembled and shipped.|
|PUT AWAY||To remove the item from the receiving area, transport it to a specific location in a storage area, and record the movement and the exact location of the item.|
|WAREHOUSE ACTIVITY||An activity in the Warehouse Management application area. Each activity has its own menu item.|
|WAREHOUSE CLASS||The categorization of items, zones, and bins according to special conditions or special equipment that are required for the storage of items. Examples of warehouse classes can be: frozen, dry, hazardous, and so on.|
|WAREHOUSE RECEIPT||The physical acceptance and recording in the program of an item arriving into a warehouse location.|
|WAREHOUSE SHIPMENT||The act of shipping items from a warehouse location and recording the shipment in the program.|
|WAREHOUSE ADJUSTMENT||The process of adjusting bin content records. A negative adjustment decreases the quantity of items in the bin. A positive adjustment increases the quantity of items in the bin.|
WMS SETUP – “HOW-TO START”
Warehouse functionality in Business Central contains different levels of complexity, as defined by license permissions in the offered granules. The level of complexity in a warehouse solution is largely defined by the bin setup on location cards, which in turn is license-controlled so that access to bin setup fields is defined by the license. In addition, the application objects in the license govern which UI document to use for the supported warehouse activities.
Most interesting warehouse activities – “How-To”
|Set up eight different bin types, such as Picking Bin, to define the flow activities that relate to each bin type.||Set Up Bin Types|
|Create bins, either manually or automatically, with information, such as name, number series, and category, according to a bin template.
Define which items you want to store in any given bin and set the rules that decide when to fill the bin with a particular item.
|Set an item up to always be placed in a specific bin.||Assign Default Bins to Items|
|Create templates to govern where and how items are put away during directed put-away.||Set Up Put-away Templates|
|Enable picking, moving, and putting away for assembly or production orders in basic warehouse configurations.||Set Up Basic Warehouses with Operations Areas|
|Set items and locations up for the most advanced scope of warehouse management where all activities must follow a strict workflow.||Set Up Items and Locations for Directed Put-away and Pick|
|Define when and how items in warehouse locations are counted for maintenance or financial reporting purposes.||Count, Adjust, or Reclassify Inventory|
|Enable warehouse workers to break a larger unit of measure into smaller units of measure to fulfill the needs of source documents.||Enable Automatic Breaking Bulk with Directed Put-away and Pick|
SOME SCREENS FOR WAREHOUSE ACTIVITIES
ASSIGN DEFAULT BINS TO ITEMS
If you are using bins at a location, assigning default bins to your items can make the process of shipping, receiving, and moving your items much easier. When a default bin is assigned to an item, this bin is suggested every time you initiate a transaction for this item.
Default bins are defined on the Bin Content page
Bin Content Creation Worksheet
To change the default bin for an item
Open Bin Contents, In the Location Filter field, select the appropriate location code.
Find the current default bin content entry for the item and clear the Default Bin check box.
Find the bin content line for the bin that you would like as the new default bin, select the Default Bin check box.
Note – When an item is put away for the first time, and the item does not have a default bin assigned, the system will assign the bin where the item is put away as the default bin for the item.
RECEIVING & PUTTING AWAY
In Business Central, the inbound processes of receiving and putting away can be performed in four ways using different functionalities depending on the warehouse complexity level.
PUT AWAY TEMPLATES
You can create various put-away templates and then apply them as you see fit. The put-away template that you selected for the item or stockkeeping unit, if any is used first. If these fields are not filled in, then the put-away template that you selected for the warehouse on the Bin Policies FastTab on the location card is used.
ENABLE A LOCATION FOR DIRECT PICK AND PUT-AWAYS
To enable a location for Direct Pick and Put-aways, you will need to run a process called “Create Warehouse Location” from the Location List.
The purpose of the Create Warehouse Location process is that it will move your inventory quantities to the Adjustment Bin.
For locations that use directed put-away and pick, Business Central can, in various situations, automatically breakbulk, that is, break a larger unit of measure into smaller units of measure, when it creates warehouse instructions that fulfill the needs of source documents, production orders, or internal picks and put-aways. To breakbulk sometimes also means gathering smaller units of measure, if necessary, to meet outbound requests by breaking the larger unit of measure on the source document or production order into the smaller units of measure that are available in the warehouse.
If you want to store items in several different units of measure and allow them to be automatically combined as needed in the picking process, select the “Allow Breakbulk” field on the location card.
To fulfill a task, application automatically looks for an item in the same unit of measure. But if it cannot find this form of the item, and this field is selected, application will suggest that you break a larger unit of measure into the unit of measure that is needed.
If the system can only find smaller units of measure, it will suggest that you gather items to fulfill the quantity on the shipment or production order. In effect, it breaks the larger unit of measure on the source document into smaller units for picking.
In WMS installations, you can restrict the warehouse activities that are allowed for a bin by assigning a bin type to it.
The following bin types exist:
|RECEIVE||Items posted as received but not yet put away.|
|SHIP||Items picked for warehouse shipment lines but not yet posted as shipped.|
|PUT AWAY||Typically, items to be stored in large units of measure but that you do not want to access for picking purposes.
Because these bins are not used for picking, either for production orders or shipments, your use of a Put Away type bin might be limited, but this bin type could be useful if you have purchased a large quantity of items. Bins of this type should always have a low bin-ranking, so that when received items are put away, other higher-ranking PUTPICK bins fixed to the item are put away first. If you are using this type of bin, you must regularly perform bin replenishment so that the items stored in these bins are also available in PUTPICK or PICK type bins.
|PICK||Items to be used for picking only. The replenishment of these bins can only be made by movement, not by put-away.|
|PUTPICK||Items in bins that are suggested for both the put-away and pick functions. Bins of this type probably have different bin rankings. You can set up your bulk storage bins as this type of bin with low bin rankings compared to your ordinary pick bins or forward picking area bins.|
|QC||This bin is used for inventory adjustments if you specify this bin on the location card in the Adjustment Bin Code field. You can also set up bins of this type for defective items and items being inspected. You can move items to this type of bin if you want to make them inaccessible to the usual item flow.|
In advanced warehousing, bins can be grouped in zones to manage how the workflow of warehouse activities is directed.
A zone could be a receiving zone or a stocking zone, and each zone can consist of one or several bins. Most properties assigned to a zone will by default be assigned to the bin that is created from that zone.
In advanced warehousing, you can assign warehouse class codes to items, bins, and zones to control where different item classes are stored, such as frozen goods. You can divide a zone into several warehouse classes. For example, items in the receiving zone can be stored as frozen, hazardous, or other class.
When you work with warehouse classes and a default receiving/shipping bin, you must manually fill in the appropriate bins in the warehouse receipt and shipment lines.
In inbound flows, the class code is only highlighted on inbound lines where the item class code does not match the default receiving bin. If the correct default bins are not assigned, then the quantity cannot be received.
A location is a physical structure or place where inventory is received, stored, and shipped, potentially organized in bins.
A location can be a warehouse, service car, showroom, plant, or an area in a plant.
- Default: to fill the POC lines with indication to where place goods
- Prioritized default for POC lines: Machine Center, Work Center, Location Card.
- For each Machine or Work Center a ”To-Production”, ”From-Production”, and an ”Open Shop Floor Bin” can be assigned.
- Integration with routings: To-Production bin is for first operation, From-Production is for last operation, OSFB is for all automatic flushing and respects the Routing Link Code.
BETTER INTEGRATION WITH MANUFACTURING
- Inventory «Movement document» (Not Journal Legder)
- Allow for stage bin for inventory pick locations
- Flexible Outbound flow – back to warehouse
Location with Bin and Inventory Pick/Put-A.
Dedicated: bin content is not available for pick
- Dedicated Bin boolean added to Bin and Bin Content
- Bin content is available for posting, e.g. Sales posting remove item from any dedicated bin…
- You can reserve items on a dedicated Bin…
- NB: WMS – existing functionality: Bin Type Code takes items out of ”Available to Pick Qty”
Priorities include the minimum and maximum quantities of bin content that have been fixed for a particular bin, and the bin rankings. It could also be that the warehouse is expecting new stock to arrive soon and wants to empty the bulk storage area of items before the new merchandise arrives.
if you have defined your bulk storage bins with a bin type action Put Away only, that is, the bin type does not have the Pick action selected, you must always keep your pick bins replenished, since Put Away-type bins are not suggested for a pick of inventory.
Calculate Bin Replenishment
The From Zone and From Bin fields will be blank because the algorithm to calculate from where to move the items is triggered only when you activate the “Create Movement” function.
GENERAL WMS FLOWS
- Inbound Flow, Internal Flow, Outbound Flow
GENERAL BASE SCHEMA
EXAMPLE OF A REAL SCENARIO
RECEIVING TO SHIPPING SAMPLE SCHEMA
LOCATIONS WITH BINS
EXAMPLE: CREATE PICKS FROM PICK WORKSHEETS
BASIC WAREHOUSING OPERATIONS
Operations: Basic UI Documents
- Inventory Put-away
- Inventory Pick
- Inventory Movements
- Item Journal
- Item Reclassification Journal (Internal Transfer)
- Warehouse Shipment
ADVANCED WAREHOUSING OPERATIONS
Operations Advanced UI Documents
- Warehouse Receipt
- Put-away Worksheet
- Warehouse Put-away
- Pick Worksheet
- Warehouse Pick
- Movement Worksheet
- Warehouse Movement
- Internal Whse. Pick
- Internal Whse. Put-away
- Bin Creation Worksheet
- Bin Content Creation Worksheet
- Whse. Item Journal
- Whse. Item Reclass. Journal
To support the physical handling of items on the zone and bin level, all information must be traced for each transaction or movement in the warehouse. This is managed in the Warehouse Entry table. Each transaction is stored in a warehouse register.
WAREHOUSE DOCUMENTS & JOURNAL
Warehouse documents and a warehouse journal are used to register item movements in the warehouse. Every time that an item in the warehouse is moved, received, put away, picked, shipped, or adjusted, warehouse entries are registered to store the physical information about zone, bin, and quantity.
BIN CONTENT & STORAGE
The Bin Content table is used to handle all the different dimensions of the contents of a bin per item, such as unit of measure, maximum quantity, and minimum quantity.
The Bin Content table also contains flow fields to the warehouse entries, warehouse instructions, and warehouse journal lines, which ensures that the availability of an item per bin and a bin for an item can be calculated quickly.
BASIC & ADVANCED WAREHOUSE DOCUMENTS LIST
The following different UI documents are used in basic and advanced warehousing.
|ADVANCED UI DOCUMENTS||
INBOUND WAREHOUSE FLOW
The inbound flow in a warehouse begins when items arrive in the warehouse of the company location, either received from external sources or from another company location. An employee registers the items, typically by scanning a bar code. From the receiving dock, warehouse activities are performed at different complexity levels to bring the items into the storage area.
Each item is identified and matched to a corresponding inbound source document.
The following inbound source documents exist:
- Purchase order
- Inbound transfer order
- Sales return order
In addition, the following internal source documents exist that function like inbound sources:
- Production order with output posting (OUTPUT)
- Assembly order with output posting (ASSEMBLY)
OUTBOUND WAREHOUSE FLOW
The following outbound source documents exist:
- Sales order
- Outbound transfer order
- Purchase return order
- Service order
In addition, the following internal source documents exist that function like outbound sources:
- Production order with component need
- Assembly order with component need
INTERNAL WAREHOUSE FLOWS
The flow of items between bins at a company location centers on picking components and putting away end items for assembly or production orders and ad-hoc movements, such as bin replenishments, without a relation to source documents. The scope and nature of the involved activities vary between basic and advanced warehousing.
INTERNAL FLOWS IN BASIC WAREHOUSING
- FLOWS TO AND FROM PRODUCTION
- FLOWS TO AND FROM ASSEMBLY
- AD-HOC MOVEMENTS
INTERNAL FLOWS IN ADVANCED WAREHOUSING
- FLOWS TO AND FROM PRODUCTION
- FLOWS TO AND FROM ASSEMBLY
- AD-HOC MOVEMENTS
- FLUSHING PRODUCTION COMPONENTS IN THE WAREHOUSE
- BIN CONTENT AND RESERVATIONS
- QUANTITY AVAILABLE TO PICK
- QUANTITY AVAILABLE TO RESERVE
OTHER WAREHOUSE ACTIVITIES
INTERNAL WAREHOUSE PICK
WAREHOUSE PICK LINES
WAREHOUSE RECLASSIFICATION JOURNAL
WAREHOUSE PHYSICAL INVENTORY
OR PHYSICAL INVENTORY ORDERS