This section describes the setup and processing of “Broker” Item transactions.
The Broker Item option is used to process items that you purchase only one time or very infrequently and do not wish to set up as a unique item in the inventory control system. The Broker item option allows you to use a generic item number to enter a vendor shipment order line for your customer. When the Broker option is used, the order line is entered for the generic item (i.e. Broker Item), and the actual Vendor, Vendor Item, Manufacturer, Manufacturer Item and Descriptive information about the item is stored in data that is attached to the sales order line. The actual item information is automatically passed to the purchasing system and is used to order the item from the vendor, and to invoice the item to the customer. The system uses the Broker Item internally, but will print the Broker Information on external documents (such as quotes, purchase orders, invoices).
The Broker Item option is used to process vendor shipments for items that you do not have set up in your inventory system. Broker Item processing allows you to identify an item to be shipped by one of your vendors to one of your customers, and to process the order for the item without setting up the item in the Product Catalog and Inventory files in the system. The information required to order and ship the item is trapped “on the fly” and passed to the purchasing department
Broker item processing is well suited for “one-time purchases” of parts that do not exist in your inventory control system, and that you do not wish to maintain in your inventory control system. The option is usefull for ordering accessories (mounts, cables, etc) for your customers as they are requested by your customers, or to handle other situations where you need to drop ship an item by allowing sales persons to enter the information about the item being ordered “on the fly” during order entry.
Broker item processing is also designed to handle brokered inventory situations (selling items from another companys inventory). A list of the items available from your brokers or occassional vendors can be loaded into the broker file and these brokered items can be ordered and then shipped directly by the vendor to the customer using Broker Processing.
The following basic rules apply to Broker Item processing.
• Third party item processing allows a sales operator to quickly enter an order line for an item that you do not stock, and for that order line to be automatically processed by the purchasing department. A unique part number for the item does not need to be setup in the Catalog or Inventory files when this option is used.
• The orders for the Broker items MUST be processed as vendor shipments. This allows the system to correctly record the unique cost of each of the items being sold. If an item needs to be purchased from a vendor and received into your warehouse prior to shipment, the item should be set up in the Catalog and Inventory files. This ensures the system maintains the correct average cost and a unque id for the items which you maintain in your inventory and bin locations. In the future the specific item costing option could be used to allow warehouse processing of these types of shipments, but this is not supported in the current system.
• One generic part number is used by the system when Broker processing is being used. This generic part number or place holder is set up in the Product Catalog file and Inventory records are created for it in the locations in which Broker item processing can be performed. The item is set up so that it can only be entered as a vendor shipment order line. The system uses only one part number due to the fact that the design is used to avoid unneccesary item setup and to allow items to be defined on the fly – this is not possible if new items need to be created manually for each new manufacturer or vendor being used. The system also automatically records the vendor, vendor item number, manufacturer, manu item# and any description for the item in the major files used to process the transaction (sales order lines, invoice lines, po lines). This line item information can be used to generate pos reports by manu# or manufacturer, vendor as needed.
• The generic part number for the inventory item is not serialized – if you wish to track serialized inventory, the item must be set up in the Product Catalog and Inventory system as a stocking item.
• Once a sales order has been entered for a Broker item, the system automatically creates a purchase order requisition for the item being ordered. The sales order can be modified up until the point until this requisition is converted to a vendor purchase order. Once one or more purchase order lines have been issued for the sales order line, the operator is blocked from changing the sales order line unless the purchasing department first cancels any po lines (this control is important when you are ordering something your company does not wish to stock in the first place).
• If one of the Broker items processed in the above manner is returned to you or is received into inventory for any reason, a Product Catalog and an Inventory record must be set up for the specific item being returned. This requirement is due to the fact that the generic item number can only be used for processing when it does not move through your in house inventory. If you receive the item into stock, specific item and cost information is required in order to physically identify the item and to track the actual cost and quantity for the item. The current method requires a stocking part number to be set up for the item prior to receiving the item into inventory
• Since the Broker Item is processed as a Vendor Shipment, the item is never received into inventory, and the system moves the specific cost from the PO line or lines for the shipment to the invoice lines for the shipment when the invoice for the order is generated.