Lots allow you to trace the origin of parts used during production. Bad batches happen. Lots give you important information on why that might be happening, by tracking down where, when and how the parts used in a build were sourced.
Lots can be created in three situations:
- When receiving items in a purchase order
- When finishing a production build
- When manually adding inventory
Inventory traceability is achieved both through Lots and inventory ID codes. The inventory ID code might refer to the unique ID that comes on a reel, for example.
As an example, when receiving items on a purchase order, those items can get a single lot code but every item in it can also have its own ID code, differentiating it from other inventory you might already have. Lot codes along with inventory ID codes will show up in the production build once inventory has been reserved or used for assembly.
Custom lots are the ones created when manually adding or importing inventory. That's because the app doesn't know the exact reason it was created (i.e. not through production or purchasing).
Customer-facing lot codes
An alternative lot code can be set on each lot (
Alt. Lot #). While the lot code (
Lot #) of every lot has to be unique, the
Alt. Lot # code doesn't, so different lots might use the same
Alt. Lot #. The
Alt. Lot # can be used to represent a vendor or customer-facing lot code, different than the one used internally.
As an example, when producing units for a given customer, the total quantity might go into several production builds, each one resulting in a different (internal) lot. However, since those units would be sold in a single shipment, the
Alt. Lot # could represent the sales order itself (i.e. the customer-facing lot code), so the customer would see a single lot code but you'd know the units sold were originated from different production builds.