Supply Chain Management in Dynamics AX

This blog contains information and feedback on the Supply Chain Management area in Microsoft Dynamics AX

Inventory blocking

Inventory blocking

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Overview

The possibility to prevent items currently in your warehouse from being used in standard processes has often been requested. In previous versions of Dynamics AX this was primarily possible with the quarantine order functionality. However quarantine orders require items to be (logically) moved to a separate quarantine warehouse.

So the new blocking functionality is designed to allow items to be blocked at their current location.

The first requirement is to be able to block some of the current on-hand. During the analysis for the new functionality it was discovered that in addition there is also a need to block some incoming goods until quality inspection is complete.

The second requirement is that the current on-hand is always correct – both from a quantity point of view and from a value point of view.

 

The ideas behind it all

For most types of issue transactions – like sales orders – it is possible to point out specific on hand and use the physical reservation to reserve/block current on-hand for the specified transaction. To ensure that items on-hand are blocked we create a set of issue transactions and use the same physical reservation mechanism. This set is identified by a unique InventTransId value.

To ensure that the expected on-hand is always correct we create a set of expected receipt transactions. The date when the items are expected to be released back to inventory can be modified by the user. This ensures that master planning can correctly considers items currently blocked.
The set of expected receipt transactions is identified by another unique InventTransId value.

We have defined a new reference type for the inventory transactions related to blocking called “Inventory blocking”.

This screen shot shows the transactions for a blocking entity where a single piece is being blocked

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The corresponding on-hand form in a scenario where 1000 pieces are on hand is shown below

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The inventory blocking functionality intentionally doesn’t have any scrap functionality – or other means of deducting some of the blocked on-hand. If you want to allow for such functionality you need to combine the blocking functionality with other processes for issuing items.

As the inventory blocking functionality never consumes or moves any on-hand there is no need to ever pick, pack or invoice any of the issue transactions (which would also require updating of the receipt transactions). When the items are no longer to be blocked the quantity is simply reduced or the entire blocking entity is deleted along with all the transactions associated.

 

Manual inventory blocking

Manual inventory blocking – as opposed to quality order blocking – is the process where a user directly creates a new inventory blocking entity and specifies quantity and inventory dimensions.
The form for maintaining inventory blockings can be found in the “Periodic” section under “Inventory and warehouse management”.

When saving the new inventory blocking entity inventory transactions are automatically created which makes the physical reservation and represent the release back to inventory.

 

Quality order blocking

A quality order can be created either manually or automatically as part of the receipts process. For both cases an inventory blocking entity is automatically created – just as for a manual inventory blocking entity. However as the received items may be part of a linked chain (marked) of transactions the blocking transactions are inserted into this chain upon creation and the original chain is recreated again upon release from blocking.

Author: Kim Moerup

  • Yes, Nice functionally this Kim.  I can imagen that it will be easy to add additional Reference information to this, like when a salesman is taking goods out of the Warehouse to demo for a customer, or a customer Calls in to make a reservation, and will return later to create the order.  This is also a very common scenario in Retail, where you want the ability to reserve goods in the store.  

    I also look into the possibility to set a time-limit on the reservation, so we can have functionallity like "Block/reserve until Friday".  Many possibilities to be created on top of this.

  • Just wondering if this functionality can be used at the released products level vs having to set it up for each individual site and warehouse?

    There are times when we would like to 'quarantine' ALL the  on hand material at our sites without having to create individual records for each site and location.  We have 22 sites and growing....

  • you could check the stopped flag on the item.

  • Our planners and buyers did have one comment on the blocking mechanism that uses journals.

    These journals are visible in Net Requirement screen, not changing anything because the negative and positive quantity cancel each other out, but one could consider this a form of clutter of the Net req screen that already requires full attention of the user to correctly `read`

    It would be nice to have a parameter in the blocking functionality ´show in net req yes-no´.

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