Often I discuss Warehouse Setups with Warehouse Managers during Design Phase for implementations of Microsoft Dynamics NAV and there seems to be a disconnect in terminology. Some Warehouse Managers will refer to a particular warehouse that stock is stored in as a SKU (Stockkeeping Unit), while others will refer to a particular zone or bin within a Warehouse as a Location. It is important from the start to ensure that everyone is on the same page when you start discussing Warehouse Setups or you will find that halfway through a small misunderstanding between a Zone and a Bin will bring about some pretty big shifts in Design. The good news is that these are not difficult things to explain. Usually this is where I get my whiteboard marker out and start drawing some very messy squares on the board. You can choose a better way if you please but the concepts remain the same. Here are the basics and some things to remember:
- A Single NAV Database can have many Companies
- Each Company can have many Locations
- Each Location can have many Zones
- A Zone can hold a specific Warehouse Class Code – e.g. Heated, Frozen or Refrigeration Zones
- A Zone can hold related information regarding Special Equipment needed within that Zone – e.g. Heated Forklift for the Freezer Zone
- A Zone can hold a particular Ranking often used in Advanced Warehousing to help optimise picks and put-aways according to the rank criteria specified. Picks and Put-aways will be directed to higher ranking bins first.
- Each Zone can have many Bins. The Bins will pick up attributes from the Zones so these do not need to be entered a second time on setups.
- A Bin can be set to hold a Maximum Cubage and Maximum Weight. You can also set the Maximum Quantity that a bin can hold. **Note that the UOM must be set up on the Item Card first. It is only possible to operate with multiple UOMs in WMS installations otherwise bin contents can only be held in the Base UOM. In all transactions with a UOM higher than the item’s base UOM, the quantity is converted to the base UOM.
- Bins can be set up on Machine/Work Centre cards for Backward and Forward Consumption during Production – Items with Forward flushing method and no routing link code are deducted from the open shop floor bin – The quantity of component items that use Backward flushing method is deducted from the open shop floor bin, and the quantity of component items that use Pick + Backward flushing method is deducted from the To-Production bin.
I have put together a few PowerPoint Slides to assist with demonstrating Locations, Zone and Bins. Feel free to use as needed. I have included a slide with basic animations and notes.