Combine the best of two worlds: attributes 2.0
“How can you work with a standard solution and customize it completely at the same time? Without having to hire the expertise of expensive developers for every tiny adjustment?” It is one of the most frequently asked questions during a selection of a new software package. Actually, the solution is very simple. By making clever use of the function “Attributes” in Microsoft Dynamics, you get a wide range of possibilities. In this blog I will tell you about its possibilities and especially for our current customers: new features that recently have been added to our solution within this subject.
Adjust the attribute settings per customer or customer item
From the “Attribute settings” screen you can easily create and adjust a new attribute. Create a new code with a clear description; this is also the name that your end users will see on their screen. Next, choose a type, such as Text, Option, Decimal, and so on. Finally, if desired, link a selection list with the desired values.
Vary up to 10 options
By using a various set of tables, up to ten characteristic fields can be set up. This way it is very easy to use an extra field. You can change this setting at administration level. For the document lines and document details, this can also be done at customer- or customer item level. For example, a field can be used for “Quality” for one customer. You can offer the user the option to choose from the values A-, B- and C-grade. At the same time, you can use another attribute code with different option values for another customer. This can get as detailed as you would like to, up to characteristics with completely different purposes. It is clear that you can meet all the individual customer needs.
Select and book based on attributes
Do you use specific attributes in your WMS? You can also have these taken to the entries. This way, you can see with which characteristic an article has been stocked or removed. Even when it comes to transactions done way in the past. Of course this is also visible in the stock on carrier- and batch level. You can keep multiple types on one item this way. For example: fruit with different sizes and/or colors. Or mobile phones with different versions, such as 16GB- and 32GB versions. The possibilities are limitless!
In addition, you can set per each attribute whether you have to be able to filter on this attribute when stocking. Do you enter “Grade A” in the document line? If so, only this grade will be allocated from the available stock.
Validate the input and prevent errors
If you have an attribute that allows a free text value to be filled in, does the system check the input? Luckily, this has also been taken in consideration. A Regular expression* can be set for each individual attribute, to check the input in the relevant field.
Furthermore, it is possible to check identification numbers by applying a Luhn algorithm. For example, you can easily validate credit card numbers and IMEI numbers. This prevents errors during manual input and validates the input from a scanner or EDI message.
* Unfamiliar with Regular expressions? If so, check the regexr.com website. They offer a super useful tool for this.
Best of both worlds
With this option you will not only work more efficiently. You will also work more customer-oriented, more accurately and more consistently. Your customers are fully informed with each shipment. You are certain that the right products were imported and will be exported. Finally, repetitive tasks occur less and less. Implementing attribute settings will let you experience how the industry standard can still deliver customization!