Jun 18, 2019
Extend your demand planning in Acumatica
In a previous blog post, we looked at the difference between Inventory Control and Inventory Management. Today, we want to look specifically at Acumatica, a true-cloud ERP application that has seen significant growth over the last few years. Our primary focus here will be on how it helps users with inventory tasks and where inventory-based businesses may need an additional tool.
Acumatica has tremendous features and flexibility. It does its job extremely well, but there are some areas where integrated add-on tools are needed to provide crucial functionality. For example, inventory forecasting in a “make to order” manufacturing environment is managed well within your Acumatica ERP solution — but when it comes to “make to stock” manufacturing, you may want to look at enhancing your system by adding an inventory management solution to provide exceptional demand planning and forecasting capabilities.
Acumatica can manage quite a few key aspects for your warehouse, such as: inventory costs, locations, lot numbers, serial numbers, bin locations, bills of material, production planning, material requirements, purchase orders, sales orders, and freight costs. Acumatica also allows for entry-level forecasting and demand planning, but it only takes into account your standard lead time and order data based on sales history — and these calculations tend to be rather static by nature. To extend the functionality of your demand planning and to have a more dynamic view of your inventory, you need to take many factors into account, for example, supplier performance — what is the supplier’s track record on lead times? This allows you to trigger the reorder date and facilitates accurate safety stock calculations.
Inventory management solutions enable you to analyze your items and group them according to the ABC analysis — your A items are your highest in terms of value and consumption, whereas your C items are your lowest in cost and consumption. Based on this ABC analysis, you can select your target fill rate to ensure you are always in stock without being overstocked.
Additionally, an inventory management solution provides deeper insights, particularly in more complex environments. Consider your C items as an example. These are your low-value slow movers, which means they shouldn’t be a focus for you. However, what if there is a component in your C list that is critical to your “make to stock” of an A item? You cannot afford to run low of those items.
Your ABC item classification may also change depending on sales, demand fluctuations, trends, fads, and seasonal changes. That kind of data will not be available within your standard Acumatica functionality. So now you can start to see that many factors and algorithms are needed to give you the intelligent insights required to streamline your demand and forecasting process.
Acumatica and Inventory Management solutions are mutually inclusive and work side by side to provide a full Inventory control and management experience for your business and your customers. Your Inventory Management solution provides you with the data, insights, and intelligence to accurately forecast your inventory, and your Acumatica solution is ready to execute these tasks to completion. When working together, this creates a perfect, symbiotic relationship that puts you in the driver’s seat to create a more balanced and more profitable inventory.
Listen to Russ Graf (NETSTOCK) and John Schlemmer (JAAS Systems) discuss how Acumatica and NETSTOCK work together to give you better control of your inventory and your supply chain:
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Written by Craig de Kock
Craig comes from an engineering background, receiving his degree from the University of Pretoria in the early ’90s. His experience in supply chain started in 1992, where he joined a team developing ERP and logistics solutions for local organizations in South Africa. Focusing in supply chain, Craig moved to a specialist supply chain business in the early 90's and moved through the ranks to eventually end up managing a team of consultants on various supply chain projects in SA. Craig joined Barloworld logistics as General Manager of product development and was responsible for the development, testing, and international rollout of their inventory optimization product. Craig later expanded his talents and joined a team to manage IT infrastructure, IT Projects, Warehousing, Operations and Supply chain in a cellular business as the COO and later CIO. In 2011 Craig went back to his supply chain roots and joined cloud-based Inventory Management company NETSTOCK. He began his journey at NETSTOCK, building the business from the ground up. Today Craig is President for NETSTOCK in the USA and CIO for the group. Craig focuses on NETSTOCK customers, empowering his team to make sure they have the right systems and processes in place to deliver a superior customer experience.