Most companies use ERP systems that provide warehouse information only on SKU (Stock Keeping Unit) level. This often causes huge issues and leads to false ATP (Available To Promise) information because components under the same SKU might have numerous different attributes that affect their compatibility with customer requirements.
Knowing what you have in your warehouses is a key piece of information when selling anything. If you don’t know what you have in stock (Available-To-Promise, ATP), how could you reliably promise something to your customers?
The fact is many businesses don’t have real-time visibility of their warehoused goods and components – at least not on a detailed enough level.
Most companies use ERP systems that provide warehouse information only on SKU (Stock Keeping Unit) level. This is often insufficient because components under the same SKU might have numerous different attributes that affect their compatibility with customer requirements. These attributes can be e.g. best-before date, fire-resistance certification, or software version.
Even if the attribute information is correctly provided by a supplier with an ASN (Advanced Shipping Notice) when you are purchasing the components, it often gets lost the moment you move them in your ERP. This can lead to a situation where your ERP indicates there are 1000 units of a certain component in stock, but in reality, none of those meet the requirements of a customer’s order.
Here’s a simplified picture that demonstrates the difference between the Available-To-Promise quantities with traditional ERP systems and our Tracking Cloud™ solution:
The traditional ERP systems only track components on SKU level and thus fail to see the difference between blue, green, and orange cogs. This results in a false Available-To-Promise quantity.
If you cannot tell what is in your warehouses in real-time, sales does not know what they can promise to the customers and production cannot plan their operations accordingly.
There are many ways manufacturing companies have tried to tackle this challenge, but none have proven to be that successful. Anyone accustomed to the topic knows that building a custom solution with traditional IT tools is a massive task that will end up costing hundreds of thousands or millions and takes up to years to implement. And even when finished, these types of solutions come with restrictions. Adding additional attributes to SKUs will multiple the amount of data exponentially – the relational database structure used in most ERPs simply cannot process millions of lines of information in near real-time.
Another method we have seen companies use when trying to keep up with their inventory is to maintain a bunch of manually updated Excel sheets in addition to their ERP data. Needless to say, this is a massively time-consuming process that also leaves your operations vulnerable to human errors and does not provide true real-time information.
We at Bluugo have developed a solution that solves these problems once and for all. Our Tracking Cloud™ platform connects to your existing systems and provides real-time visibility of your warehouse inventory – even with serial number accuracy. Your sales and production will have access to real-time ATP information with customer or order-specific requirement compatibility.
Tracking Cloud’s powerful search tools combined with our unique Rules Engine guarantee that the solution provides near real-time information even when dealing with tens of millions of lines of data at once. ERPs simply cannot match this performance.
Tracking Cloud’s ATP solution can be utilized in any industry where products or components can be subjected to compatibility requirements issued by the customer or some other stakeholder. Good examples are e.g. component compatibility requirements of finalized products in the electronic industry and batch-specific traceability requirements of the food industry.
Compared to traditional IT projects, Tracking Cloud™ is very fast to implement. We can provide a production-ready solution in about 8 weeks. You do not need to build any point-to-point integrations with your suppliers – ASN (Advanced Shipping Notice) data can be imported to Tracking Cloud™ automatically from e.g. e-mails or spreadsheets provided by the supplier.
Our SaaS pricing model lowers the amount of initial investment and – to put it bluntly – will save you a lot of money compared to building a solution with traditional IT tools and ERPs.
Do you have an issue regarding ATP or other topics revolving around warehouse visibility? Get in touch and let’s set up a meeting! We will analyze your business problem, figure out how it can be solved, and present you with a suggestion for the next steps. We will also gladly tell you more about our other references with ATP-related use cases.
Our experts have decades of hands-on experience in business digitalization and traditional IT projects – they speak both business and technology.