Posts Tagged ‘Business process’

Data integrity issues in MRP implementations

December 22, 2011 Leave a comment

A good description of the data integrity issues found in MRP implementations can be found in the article on MRP in Wikipedia. In a nutshell, if the

English: MRP

Image via Wikipedia

information in your manufacturing system is bad, don’t expect its planning to be any better (or GIGO). While you are implementing the MRP module in OpenERP, you should pay attention to the following information items in your systems:

  • Lead-times: critical for the timing phase of your planning. If production or supplier lead-times are not accurate, don’t be surprised to find planning dates that are not realistic.
  • Stock levels: very critical, since all the procurements are created when the stock levels drop down below its reorder point or when a customer makes an order (depending on how you have your system set-up)
  • Bills of Materials: your system will procure either raw material, work in process inventory or end-items. Which items it will procure depends on the accuracy of Bill of Materials. Your BoM needs to reflect how your product is assembled. I found some places where the BoM only reflects the cost structure of the end-item, and that is wrong. The cost of the end-item is a different problem that needs to be addressed in a different module than the manufacturing module.
  • Products: your system needs to have all the products you procure (either by purchasing or manufacturing) and sell. And its description needs to be complete.
  • MPS, or production schedule: needs to be available in order to make the plan. In all the manufacturing plants there is a production schedule. People might not be aware there is one, but actually you can find it in the daily or weekly manufacturing plans.
  • Reorder points: you need reorder points (minimum and maximum stock levels) in some products in order to not disrupt your quality of service. We will not get into the calculation of these items (by now)

    We will get into more detail on these items and how to address them in further posts


A quick look at OpenERP user interface

December 20, 2010 Leave a comment

Just a quick note before starting, this post covers OpenERP 5.0 user interface. I will cover 6.0 UI when it is released.

Most of the times, the information you see at OpenERP is either a List or a Form. The first ones are a list of business objects you can view or edit, whereas the latter allow you edit those business objects. So far so good. What might be difficult to grasp at first is how to fill out those forms or how to navigate those lists. Hence this post.

We will begin with the buttons we find in a form. The image below shows an standard form of a partner in the GTK client:


OpenERP GTK Client Screenshot

OpenERP GTK Client Screenshot


On the top right side of the main tab we can find three buttons. New, Save and Edit, and Cancel. These buttons save what we have done or let us cancel our cnahges. They are designed to allow you change the entry form state. To the right of the buttons we can find the navigation buttons, which allow us go to the previous record on the list and the next one.

After choosing one of the items on the list, we can edit it. Entry forms in OpenERP have a hierarchical structure, with main entries and secundary entries. They can be mandatory or not, and can be identified with the light blue color. They turn red when the user did not enter any information in them.

The secondary entries can be found in the different tabs in the form. For instance, the partner has the following tabs: Main, Sales and Purchases, History, Notes, Accounting and Categories. I advise you to check the different entries before continuing with the form. Below you will see an icon with a hard disk and an arrow pointing at some of the entries.


OpenERP buttons

OpenERP buttons


This icon indicates that it is necessary to save the form before continuing with the entry (just pressing the icon is enough). The entries with these arrows are lists. For instance, the partner can have different contacts and filling this form allows you to create more contacts for this partner.


Lookup button on OpenERP

Lookup button on OpenERP

Another important icon is the folder button, with a magnifying glass on it. This button is related to reference entries. This means that the information to be intered has to exist in the system database. A different way of entering information in a reference field is to write the first letters of the value we wish to enter and press Tab, the system will complete the field with the first value that matches the letters entered on the field. Keep in mind that as long as you enable and disable modules some entries might disappear.

Well, enough for today on OpenERP UI. My next post will cover some of the online resources for learning how to use this ERP system.