Purchasing can be considered a form of art. From negotiating with vendors, to keeping the correct on-hand quantities, there is always a balancing act that must happen in order to create the perfect purchasing scenario. Here are some tips to help you master the art of purchasing in Fishbowl Inventory.
Use The Built-in Reports
The Reorder Report, which can be found in the Reports Module, will show you all of the parts that need to be reordered in order to fulfill all of your current demand. The report is a handy tool to help you figure out what your current “On Hand” inventory is verses your “Available” quantity. Throw in Reorder levels (see below), and this report can become a powerful tool for any purchasing agent.
The Auto PO report shows much of the same information that you find on the Reorder Report, but the information is broken down by Default Vendor. In other words, if you want to see all of the items that should be purchased, and from which vendors to purchase them, use the Auto PO report.
Set up Reorder Levels
In the Part Module, you can set up reorder levels for each of your Inventory-type parts. The reorder levels include a Reorder Point (some people call this the min), and the Order Up to Level (some people call this the max).
When your inventory dips below the Reorder Point (min), that part will show up on the reports that we mentioned above, and it will populate into the Auto-PO wizard (see below).
If you need to keep a specific amount of inventory on hand, make sure you set up your Reorder Levels. This will help you eliminate some of the guess work when you do your purchasing.
Bonus: after you have used Fishbowl Inventory for a few months, you can run the “Auto ROP” wizard to help you calculate your Reorder Levels based off of historical data in Fishbowl.
Use the Auto PO function
The Auto PO function can be used to create Purchase Orders for all parts that need to be reordered. The button is found at the top-left side of the Purchase Order Module. When running the Auto PO wizard, Fishbowl will look at all of your open orders (SO’s, PO’s, MO’s, and TO’s) to see what inventory is scheduled to leave your warehouse, and what is scheduled to come in. Not only will Fishbowl look at your open orders, but it will also look at your Reorder Levels to see if additional inventory should be ordered to replenish your shelf quantities.
If you want to use the Auto PO function, you must first set up Default Vendors. This can be done in the Part Module, under the “Vendors” tab.
Once you have set up your Reorder Levels, and assigned your Default Vendors, your life as a purchaser should be smooth sailing. The biggest decision you’ll have to make after that is what to do with all of your free time.
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We would love to hear your feedback! Let us know of your successes or difficulties when it comes to purchasing in Fishbowl Inventory.