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Help with Bill of Materials

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  • Help with Bill of Materials

    I have been searching the message board for help and not sure if I am using the wrong terms in my search!.

    I need some help with the following with a desktop application.

    We are a manufacturing company, for example lets say a computer company...

    I have a Parts table that contains all the parts that we use to build a PC. In this table I have the quantity on hand and assigned/sold then balance available.

    The next table is the Bill of Materials. In the table I list the PC model, then in a set, look up the Parts table and it writes to a table called PC_BOM. This shows every part that goes into that PC, table is called BOM_Parts. Some parts are unique to this PC and others are common to all PCS plus there are multiples, for example: Screws x 6. The BOM_Parts table is linked naturally in the set.

    Next, I have an Invioce_items table, that we sell a PC, it looks at the PC_BOM table. the Invoice_Items table records the sale and then posts (using the post feature in the Field Rules) the amount sold to the PC_BOM table.

    Now comes my problem and where I am stuck. I need to post the parts in the bill of materials to the parts table, using the example above:

    Invoice_Items table records the sale and posts the PC_BOM that 1 PC model XYZ has been sold.
    Table BOM_Parts list all the items that are needed to bill PC model XYZ, for example Screws x 6.

    Now I am lost but what I wants to do:

    Using the example above, post a subtraction to the Parts Table, in this case Screws x 6. The database would need to read that 1 PC model XYZ has been sold then look at the PC_BOM table to get the part numbers and how many of these parts are used (Screws x 6) then post this to the Parts table, Screws -6, this would be posted to the sold field So we can see how many have been used / allocated and the balance on hand.

    I hope that I have explained this well enough and I am sure there are posts abot this but I can not find this type of inventory control.

  • #2
    Re: Help with Bill of Materials

    Like so many things, there are several ways to do this sort of thing.
    I would do all of the posting with xbasic. Look at <table>.change_begin() and <table>.enter_begin() in Help to see some code.
    If you sell lots of the same PC configuration then it is worth setting up BOM's. If most PC's are custom made then maybe BOM's is overkill.
    I am a little confused by your names but I would have the following tables:
    Bom_hdr - the parent part
    Bom_lines - the child parts
    Part_Master - table detailing parts
    Store_stock - records for each part and its stock quantity. Yes you could have this in your Part_Master table, but I always keep them separate. This should certainly be the case if any part is a "phantom" part.
    Stock_Movements - - records detailing every movement (purchase, invoice, scrap, sample, adjustment, etc)
    PO_hdr - purchase order header
    PO_lines - purchase order line items

    Will your BOM's be multiple levels?
    Will you have "phantom" parts - for example, if BOM is multi-level, will intermediate level parts be stocked, will the PC be a stocked item and therefore not a phantom part. If parent parts are not phantoms then you need works orders to manufacture PC's.

    Hopefully this helps.


    • #3
      Re: Help with Bill of Materials

      Thanks Gary

      I am very new to Alpha 5 so I will have to experiment with this. Generally the BOM is single layer and we do sell upto 500 of each type of product.

      Many thanks


      • #4
        Re: Help with Bill of Materials

        If you sell 500 identical units then certainly a BOM seems the best approach. Given you say BOM is generally a single level, then this means to me that sometimes it isn't. Any app you write must cope with every possibility.

        Is each PC made on demand or are they pre-built for stock?


        • #5
          Re: Help with Bill of Materials

          Originally posted by DSM View Post
          Thanks Gary

          I am very new to Alpha 5 so I will have to experiment with this. Generally the BOM is single layer and we do sell up to 500 of each type of product.

          Many thanks
          Generally and always are quite different.... So I'm guessing that you have some multi-level BOMs.... Therefore you have to build for the multi-level.
          Al Buchholz
          Bookwood Systems, LTD
          Weekly QReportBuilder Webinars Thursday 1 pm CST

          Occam's Razor - KISS
          Normalize till it hurts - De-normalize till it works.
          Advice offered and questions asked in the spirit of learning how to fish is better than someone giving you a fish.
          When we triage a problem it is much easier to read sample systems than to read a mind.
          "Make it as simple as possible, but not simpler."
          Albert Einstein


          • #6
            Re: Help with Bill of Materials

            Well this is where it gets messy. Generally we build on demand and an order can go from 1 to 300. There are 300 different types, we actually build toolboxes so I thought it would be better to use the PC example so I did not confuse people.

            We also hold some stock on hand for a few models. We are manfacture the goods onsite with about 20% parts from other suppliers. Our company is split into 3 units, 1 for laser cutting, 1 for powder coating and the other is welding pressing and assembly.

            The current system we use does not cope with parts and changes very well.


            • #7
              Re: Help with Bill of Materials

              Originally posted by DSM View Post
              We also hold some stock on hand for a few models. We are manfacture the goods onsite with about 20% parts from other suppliers. Our company is split into 3 units, 1 for laser cutting, 1 for powder coating and the other is welding pressing and assembly.
              In this case you will need all of the tables I mentioned earlier - Works Orders, hopefully just for the finished product, but you may need WO's for intermediate level parts, Purchase Orders, etc.. This appears to be quite a complex project and I recommend you map the whole process out (on paper?) to ensure you understand all elements rather than letting it evolve and end up going over the same issues many times. You mention you are new to Alpha. This is a great project to develop many programming skills.


              • #8
                Re: Help with Bill of Materials

                Thanks again Gary

                I am sure I will heaps of questions on the message board. My main issue has been how to write the posting of items from one table to another.


                • #9
                  Re: Help with Bill of Materials

                  As I mentioned earlier, look at <table>.change_begin() and <table>.enter_begin() in Help to understand how to change records (e.g., add or subtract stock) and enter new records


                  • #10
                    Re: Help with Bill of Materials

                    I'm working on a very similar structure and I've run into something not covered in this post. Looking at it from the repair process perspective, how would one go about entering a BOM used for parts replaced, as well as a separate component? For example an assembly is being repaired, a particular BOM is used to replace a list of parts (diode, resistors and a fan). In addition to this, the product needed replacement of a connector. How would one note the replacement of the connector in addition to the BOM that was used?