Inventory Management in Delivrd

Note: For up-to-date guides on using Delivrd, please refer to official Delivrd documentation.

This how-to guide explains how inventory is managed within Delivrd. Inventory management is one of Delivrd’s key features and as such, reflects upon all processes supported by Delivrd.

Inventory Types

There are two types of inventory in Delivrd: Regular and Damaged. They should reflect the actual condition of your products – Regular inventory can be used for order fulfillment, while damaged products should be sent to your supplier for repair/replacement, or thrown away.

 

Inventory in Inbound Processing

Inbound processing starts with a replenishment (purchase) order, where you order products from your suppliers. You can receive the products from that order directly, or you could create a shipment, and then receive the products through that shipment.

When you receive the ordered products, you can examine the quality of each piece and based on its quality receive it as regular inventory or damaged inventory.

Either way, when you receive products, stock level are increased by the quantity that was received.

receive_quantity

Inventory in Outbound Processing

When you pick, pack and ship products to fulfill your customer orders, inventory levels are decreased according to the quantity that was shipped.

You can only ship regular inventory, not damaged inventory.

Wave Packing

Availability Check for Customer Orders

Whenever a new customer order is created in Delivrd, a check is performed to ensure that you have enough available stock to fulfill your customer order (or orders).

Usually, you would import several orders together, and Delivrd will calculate the quantity required to fulfill all these orders, and if an inventory shortage was identified, it will mark these orders:

Availability Check

For each order, you can view order quantity, total required quantity for each order line product (taking into account all open orders), and the actual available quantity:

Available stock per customer order

Returns

There are two types of returns in Delivrd: return to supplier and return from a customer.

Return to Supplier

You can create a return order to your supplier. You can return either regular inventory (if, for example, the supplier sent you a larger quantity than was agreed), or damaged inventory.

Returning products to a supplier decreases inventory levels according to the quantities in the return order.

Return from Customer

For various reasons, customers return products. Here two, you can either receive the returned products to Regular Inventory or to Damaged Inventory.

Inventory Count

You can use Delivrd’s Inventory Count feature to update your inventory levels to reflect actual inventory quantity. Due to many reasons, over time,  the inventory quantities updated in Delivrd might differ from actual quantities. If that happens,you can count the products and update the actual quantities in Delivrd.

Serial Number and Inventory Management

Using serial number management in Delivrd provides an increased level of inventory control, as inventory is managed at the piece level (each piece is uniquely identified), as oppose to at the product level.

The Serial Number Management how-to guide explains how that works.

Serial Numbers List

Inventory Management of Packing Materials

Another one of Delivrd’s unique features is packaging materials management. Since packaging materials (bubble padded envelopes, poly mailer, carton boxes etc.) are represented in Delivrd’s with their own product, inventory for these materials can be managed just like any other product.

Example: product for packaging material Padded Envelope. Available inventory quantity: 97

padded envelope inventory

You can use replenishment orders to order the packaging materials from your suppliers, and you should receive your packaging materials to stock, just like you order any other product.

You can also update the inventory quantity of these material by using Delivrd’s count function.

Additionally, every shipment you create from a customer order, has a packaging material assigned to it. When shipping is completed, inventory levels of the packaging material is decreased, based on the quantity that was used for packing the shipped products.

Example: this order has one line of  the product ordered (line no. 10), and another line (line no. 9999), detailing the packaging material used, and the quantity that will be used for packing this order.

edit_order

 

Safety Stock

When creating a new product in Delivrd, you have to enter a safety stock quantity. When inventory levels fall below the safety stock quantity, quantities in the Inventory list page turn red. You then need to replenish your inventory (usually in the form of a replenishment order from your supplier).

Negative Stock

Delivrd allows your inventory level to go negative (meaning, inventory quantity can be less than 0). Negative stock can only occur if you have not managed your inventory properly. For example, if you received to stock 3 pieces but you actually got 5 pieces from your supplier, when you ship the forth (4) piece, Delivrd will show a negative stock of 1 piece (-1).

If you have negative stock, you should immediately count your inventory so that Delivrd reflects the actual product quantities you have on hand.

Product Transactions History

A powerful tool to analyze your stock situation is the product history vector. Every inventory transaction (goods receipt, ship to customer, inventory count, return) is presented with its date, quantity and impact on overall inventory. The column Cum. Qty shows how inventory has changed over time with respect to each transaction.

Product Transaction History

Inventory Chart

The inventory chart provide a visual representation of your stock situation over time, compared to safety stock levels.

Inventory chart

Inventory List

This page lists all products, regular inventory and damaged inventory quantities, and the replenishment quantity – this quantity is the quantity that was ordered from suppliers but was not received yet (meaning it is either awaiting shipment from the supplier or was already shipped and it is on its way).

In Inventory list, if inventory quantity is below safety stock levels, quantity will be shown in red.

Inventory List

Serial Number Management in Delivrd

Note: For up-to-date guides on using Delivrd, please refer to official Delivrd documentation.

This how-to guide explains the different processes involved in managing serial numbers of products. Serial number management is another powerful way Delivrd provides to minimize packing mistakes and make the whole fulfillment process more efficient.

What are serial numbers?

From Wikipedia:

A serial number is a unique code assigned to uniquely identify an item. Although called a serial number, it may include letters or other symbols.

Serial numbers are all around us – your phone has one, the T.V. in your living room has one, the CPU in your computer has one. So how does Delivrd use serial numbers, and why would you want to use serial numbers, where possible?

As you might have understood by now, Delivrd relies heavily on barcode scanning. For barcode scanning to work properly, Delivrd needs a way to identify a product. There are various ways to do that – some products have an UPC/EAN barcode already printed by the manufacturer. Books have ISBN barcodes printed on their backs.

Different barcodes identifying products:

Barcode Systems

However, many products do not have these barcodes. So Delivrd relies on two other methods to identify products:

1. SKU barcodes – each product in Delivrd has a unique SKU assigned to it. Scanning a barcode containing that SKU enables Delivrd to verify that the product that was received, or packed for a customer order, is the actual product that was ordered.

2. Serial number barcodes – scanning a serial number, first when products are received from your supplier, and then , when products are packed for a customer orders, provides Delivrd with a very reliable process to identify products and prevent packing, shipping and inventory errors.

Serial numbers in receiving products from suppliers

If you are lucky enough, your supplier manages their products with serial numbers, and they have labeled all their items with a serial number barcode.

One of my suppliers, Volumerate, applies serial number labels on all the item of all of their products. I assume they use it for their own picking-packing-shipping processes, but I’m not complaining.. Here’s an example of several items of a product with a serial number label:

shipment_products

 

When you receive products with serial numbers from a supplier, the replenishment (purchase) order number is saved along with the rest of the information of the serial number. If there is a quality problem with one of the items you ordered, you can notify your supplier the serial number and the order number the damaged item was shipped with.

The actual process of receiving serial numbers to inventory is explained in Receive Ordered Products From Suppliers how-to guide.

Inventory Management of serial numbers

Once a serial number is received to stock, the serial number record is created. This record contains the following information:

1. Product name & SKU

2. Serial number

3.Date it was created

4. Inventory status – is this serial number still in stock, or was it shipped to a customer?

5. Replenishment order number that the serial was received through.

6. Customer order number this serial was shipped through.

So at a any given moment, Delivrd can let you know which serial numbers of a product are in stock and which are not.

Screenshot: Serial numbers list

Serial Numbers List

Screenshot: Serial number record

Delivrd Serial Number

 

Serial numbers in packing & shipping

Serial numbers become most valuable when you use Delivrd Wave Packing & Shipping. By scanning an item’s serial number barcode, Delivrd can guarantee accurate customer order fulfillment and inventory management. Scaning a serial number in Wave Packing and Shipping is demonstrated in the Wave Packing video tutorial:

 

Tractability with serial numbers management

Another benefit to using serial numbers throughout your order fulfillment process is tractability. If your customer complains about quality issues in the item you sent them, your can trace back from that customer orders’ which serial numbers were shipped, and let your supplier know which items are defect. Without serial number management, it would be very difficult to know which item was shipped to the specific customer, as there is no way to distinguish a single item of a product from other items of the same product.

It’s important to understand that using serial numbers in Delivrd is not a must, but rather optional. You can use all of Delivrd’s powerful features by labeling your products with a barcode label containing the product’s SKU number or use existing EPC/EAN/ISBN barcodes, although serial number management has some advantages, as was explained in this how-to.

If your supplier provides you with items labeled with serial numbers (as does my supplier, VolumeRate) we strongly recommend to use serial number management as explained in this how-to guide.

If you want to use serial number management but your supplier does not label his items with serial numbers, you can print your own labels (if you have a barcode label printer and the required software). You can create new serial numbers without reference to a replenishment order – you can first receive the products from the supplier without serial numbers, apply the labels to each item, and then create the new serial number in Delivrd.

Receive Ordered Products from Suppliers

Note: For up-to-date guides on using Delivrd, please refer to official Delivrd documentation.

This guide will explain how to receive products that you ordered from your suppliers. Receiving the products in Delivrd, the free order fulfillment and inventory management software, will update their inventory levels, serial numbers (if they exist), and update the status of the shipment/replenishment ordered that we used to order these products.

As explained earlier, Inbound Shipments are created in Delivrd based on Replenishment orders (sometimes called Purchase Orders).

Received Shipped Products To Stock

To receive ordered products and update your inventory, we first need to find the inbound shipment we created in Delivrd. You can do that by searching for the shipment with the tracking number.

Here’s a screenshot of a shipment I received from one of my suppliers, VolumeRate. The tracking number was updated in the shipment I created in Delivrd, and it is printed on a nice barcode which I can actually scan right into Delivrd to easily find the shipment:

shipment_tracking_number

This shipment contains 10 pieces of one of the products I sell on eBay – envelope style leather case for iPhone. I get each piece with a label with the sku number on it (359913) and another label with a unique serial number for each piece:

shipment_products

So you can either type the tracking number of scan it, and once the shipment is found, from the Actions drop-down menu, select ‘Edit’:

search_shipment

From the edit shipment page, go to the page’s ‘Action’ menu and select ‘Receive Shipment Products’:

shipment_receive_products

You will be transfered to the ‘Receive Shipment Products‘ page. Here, you’ll get a list of all products you ordered and were sent in this shipment. To perform the actual products receipt, click on the ‘Receive’ button of each product:

products_recieve_to_stock

You will then enter the quantity you actually received (in the example below, order quantity was 10, and quantity received was also 10):

receive_quantity

The most accurate method to determining the actual quantity received is to count each piece you received in your shipment, and then update this quantity as the quantity received in Delivrd. Alternatively, you can rely on the quantity printed on the delivery note he sent (thus trusting your supplier he did not make any packing mistakes). If you choose to rely on the delivery note your supplier sent, you can use serial numbers scanning (if available) to verify that quantity.

Receive Serial Numbers

One of the strongest features of Delivrd is serial number management. Using serial numbers you can uniquely identify each piece in your inventory. That means improved inventory accuracy, and minimizes mistakes in the order fulfillment process.

One of my suppliers, VolumeRate, labels each piece of any product I order from him with a barcode containing a unique serial number. Whenever I receive a shipment from him, I scan the serial number barcode of each piece I get. It only takes a couple of minutes to complete the process, but once I’m done, I know exactly how many pieces I’ve received. Also, even more importantly, I can scan the serial number barcode when I fulfill customer orders, which eliminates packing & shipping mistakes to almost zero! (more on that in later posts).

To receive serial numbers to Delivrd, I click on the ‘Serials’ button from the ‘Receive Shipment Products‘ page:

recieve_serial

In the ‘Add Serial Number’ page, I can see the quantity received (see previous step), the number of serials I’ve already scanned, and the order number.

The cursor is placed automatically in the Serial Number box, so I can just continually scan all barcodes of serials I received in the current shipment, until I’m done:

scan_serial

Once all pieces have been scanned, I can compare the quantity I received to the quantity I scanned. If there are differences, there are some pieces missing – I either did not scan all of them, or the supplier shipped the wrong quantity.