Serial items in ESC are items that are tracked individually by their Serial Number. Whereas Stock type items come and go and cannot be individually traced, Serial type items can be traced from the moment they are received, to the moment they are sold, even if they are transferred between Warehouses or to a Job.
You may have a lot of parts in your inventory that have serial numbers assigned to them by the manufacturer, but that doesn't mean you'll want to track them all. You'll most likely only want to set up the larger or more expensive items to be tracked by their serial number. Remember, you cannot receive, adjust or sell any serialized item without its serial number.
Creating a Stock Item
- Click on the Item List button on your icon bar.
- Click the Add button on the toolbar and select Inventory Part.
- Assign this item a Part Number and Description.
- Set the Part Type to Serial.
- Select a Category and Sub-Category for this new item.
**At this time, it is possible to Save this item. However, we do recommend completing the additional fields below in order for the item to function properly.
- If you know the cost of this item, you may enter that into the Last Purchase Price field and the amount will be duplicated in the Average Cost and Base Price fields. The Base Price field is a manual-entry field and does not fluctuate like the Last Purchase Price and Average Cost fields, so you may enter a different amount in here if you wish to base your Markups and Prices on a set cost.
- If a Markup Code is not already assigned, please select one now. This will automatically generate your Price A, B, and C fields based on the cost you may have previously entered. If you would rather manually control the prices of this item and not allow them to recalculate, then remove the Markup Code and fill in the prices you want for this item.
- Select a Price Book for this item if it will be different than the default.
- Do you want this item to appear in the customer's Equipment record when sold? If so, select "Yes" for Post to Equipment. If you select "Yes" here, you will also be required to fill out the Manufacturer tab (2) with a Manufacturer, Module, Equipment Type and the length of the Warranty on this item.
At this point, you have completed all of the necessary fields for this Stock item and can Save the item at any point. However, the Inventory Entry screen also provides a wide array of features that help with tracking, reporting and the behavior of this item.
In addition to the basic Pricing and tracking capabilities of inventory items, there are several optional features that can be setup on a per item basis. You'll definitely want to view these items to see what you want to work with and what you don't need.
- You can assign a Spiff Method and Spiff Value to particular items in order to encourage technicians to upsell. If an item is assigned a Spiff and then placed on an invoice, the Salesperson on that invoice will earn the Spiff. You can view a Salesperson's Spiffs on the Commission Report under Sales → Reports.
- Post to History - Selecting "Yes" next to Post to History will mean that this item gets recorded in the customer's History record each time it is sold. This makes for easy reporting and tracking of certain items. You won't want every item to Post to History, however, since this could cause a customer's History records to become overloaded and difficult to read. You may also designate a specific History Code to be used when this item is transferred to the customer's History.
- The financial path of an Inventory item can also be controlled. By default, the Income Account will be blank and the Inventory Account and Cost Account will be filled in by the defaults in the Company → System Setup → System Accounts tab. These settings are not something that need to be changed and should only be changed with the guidance of an experienced accountant or bookkeeper. For more information on the financial aspects of inventory tracking, please see our article on the financial side of inventory tracking.
Quantity and Location tab
The primary function of the Quantity and Location tab is to provide you with the ability to quickly order parts that you are running low on and be able to find them or place them where they belong. There are five fields that help you to achieve this: Warehouse, Aisle, Bin, Minimum Quantity and Maximum Quantity.
- The Warehouse will need to be assigned for every line and you can have as many Warehouses filled out in this screen as necessary.
- For each Warehouse, you can assign an Aisle and Bin to help all users to quickly find where this specific part is located in your physical Warehouse. This is great if you have a large storage location and/or keep a lot in stock. If you're working with a small van or truck, these fields may not be necessary and can be left blank.
- Minimum Quantity will be the least amount of this particular item that you want to keep on hand per Warehouse. For instance, if you want to have at least 5 of this item in each vehicle at all times, then you'll enter "5" for the Minimum Quantity of every mobile Warehouse in this tab. Once a single warehouse falls below that minimum number, this inventory item will be populated in the Reorder Parts screen so that you'll know it's time to order more.
- Maximum Quantity will be the most of any part that you want to keep in stock within a particular warehouse. This works with the Minimum Quantity field to help you keep your vehicles and store rooms adequately stocked. When a warehouse falls below the Minimum Quantity in stock for this item, it will appear in the Reorder Parts screen to be replenished. The suggested amount to be ordered will be the difference between the Maximum Quantity and the quantity currently in stock for that warehouse.
The Notes tab provides you with a place to record specific information on this part for viewing by other users. This information does not post to other screens, such as Invoices or Purchase Orders.
Quantity in Stock
The purpose of this tab is to show you the total in stock of this item for each Warehouse in which the item is being kept. Any active warehouse with a quantity of the current item in stock will show in this list; even if the quantity is a negative number. A warehouse will not appear here if it does not have a quantity for the open item.
The Vendors tab not only allows you to track purchasing information for the current item, but also allows you to assign an alternate part number to the current item and select which vendor you prefer to order this item from. If the Vendor that you order from uses a different part number than you have assigned to this item, you'll enter their number in the Vendor Part Number field. When this item is used on a Purchase Order for that particular Vendor, the Vendor Part Number will be printed along with the Description of the item to help ensure that you receive the correct item.
Any time this part is received into stock using the Receive Items screen, the date it was received and the price it was received at will be recorded in the Last Purchased and Last Price fields for the vendor it was ordered from. If a Preferred Vendor is selected in this tab, that vendor will automatically be populated in the Order Parts screen for this item.