The following features and enhancements are planned for a future version of Inform (v21.0.21.xx). Note: some of these features are still in development, and therefore may be unavailable in our beta release. Check back for updates!
Bill for Backorder
If you are fulfilling project orders, such as a whole home lighting project or a bathroom remodel, you can now bill the customer for the entire project at the time of the order, then backorder the product to be shipped as they become available.
When the customer pays the invoice, Inform handles the duplicate accounting (sales + physical inventory) by logging the inventory asset to a liability account assigned to the customer to offset the additional value. As you ship product, it is subtracted from the liability until all product is shipped and the liability zeroes out.
Schedule backorder commitments
Schedule when Inform commits all or partial quantities of product on backorder based on the requested ship date. In the Sales Order, right-click the Product in the Line Items grid, and choose Backorder Commitment Schedule. Choose the Quantity of item you want to schedule, and then the requested ship date and commit dates, You can add multiple lines for scheduling different dates for partial quantities.
To make it easier to visualize the backorder commitments for all products on your order, you may now also display Commit Backorder Quantities, Quantity Backordered Committed, Quantity Backordered Uncommitted, and Quantity Unscheduled in the Line Item grid. Go to the Field Chooser and select the columns you want see.
Important: While streamlining Inform's Sales Order entry screen to accommodate this new feature, the Commit check box has been removed from the Details area of Line Items.
Lock down changes in a fiscal period
You can now lock down a fiscal period from any further changes after issuing final financials. When you lock down a fiscal period, you will be prevented from making any journal entries, posting receipts, or performing a G/L Reindex.
To control who is allowed to modify these sensitive accounting operations, make sure you set up access levels for G/L Period Lock, Reindex General Ledger, and Allow Re-open of G/L Year if Period is Locked.
Speed up order entry
These handy shortcuts will help reduce the number of clicks and your total time spent on order creation.
Use the new toggle located in the top right corner to quickly switch between a new sales order or price quote, eliminating the need to adjust quote settings from the Header section.
Line item details and procurement can now be updated in bulk. Hold the CTRL key and click to select each product to update. Next, right-click and select any option from the Details menu. Your setting will be applied to all selected lines. For even faster procurement, use keyboard shortcut CTRL + P to skip the right-clicking.
Spawned Drop Shipments
Order Spawning has been expanded to Drop Shipments! When saving your order, any line item set for Drop Ship will spawn into a separate order, one for each vendor. Set the Company Master flag Spawn New S/O Drop Shipments to Yes.
Save time logging counts of inventory with serial numbers
We have improved our physical inventory support of products with serial numbers. In the past, when you counted these products, Inform would prompt you to enter an individual serial number for each product in your inventory. If you had 50 drills in stock, you had to enter each separately with its own serial number.
Now using the new Pre-Load Serial Numbers on Physical Inventory setting in the Company Master, you can load those serial numbers when you freeze the inventory, before you begin your count. When you enter counts, you'll need to enter only the count of 50, not the individual serial number for each item. You can still also add and remove serial numbers as needed, as well.
Automated cycle counts
Inform WMS now integrates with Scheduled Cycle Counts! The improved Product Count feature includes products marked for Cycle Count in the Job List, where they may be counted in real-time without a Physical Inventory freeze. Product Count now also includes all bin locations as part of a single count.
Shortages during order or transfer picking can also be added to your count list. On your scanner, press F3 to select the product, and then press F4 to backorder and mark the product for Cycle Count.
Note: If your count does not match the serial numbers on hand, you will be prompted to add/remove serial numbers until they do reconcile. You can force them to match by setting the Company Master Serial Number Entry Required for Applicable Items to Yes.
Manage vendor pending invoices
You can now review vendor invoices sent electronically via the EDI 810 Invoice transaction protocol, and decide decide whether to import them into Inform ERP as A/P invoices or delete them.
Better visibility and allocation of vendor consigned inventory in your sales orders
Inform manages your vendor consignment inventory in a virtual warehouse that is linked to a physical warehouse. In previous version of Inform, inventory in your vendor consignment warehouse appeared lumped together with the inventory in the linked physical warehouse.
For example, assume Warehouse - Dallas is a physical warehouse with 10 widgets in stock, and Warehouse - Dallas Supply is a virtual warehouse linked to WH-Dallas, and it has 5 widgets in stock. When you ordered widgets in prior versions of Inform, you'd see 15 widgets in WH-Dallas.
Now, however, you can see the correct allocations by warehouse, with 10 in WH-Dallas, and 5 in WH-Dallas Supply. For this new workflow, set the Company Master flag Combine Vendor Consignment Warehouse in S/O Entry to No.
Inform will always pull inventory from the physical warehouse first, and will display a message showing you how much product from each warehouse will be used.
This new workflow automates the inventory checking and allocation process, making your vendor consignment transactions faster and more transparent.
For more information on vendor consignment, see Work with a vendor consignment warehouse
- You can now view the Vendor name and the Check Message on the A/P Check Payment Inquiry screen.
- To increase the speed and efficiency of entering A/P Invoices, you can now associate multiple G/L Expense Accounts with a vendor, and then allocate the invoice balance among those accounts as needed on the A/P Invoice Entry screen, without having to search for the necessary accounts again. See Enter vendor invoices and Configure vendor's default preferences.
- You can now link purchase orders from multiple branches to a single vendor invoice in A/P Invoice Entry. Make sure you set the Company Master flag Show Receiving for all Branches in A/P Invoice Entry to Yes.
- Multi-select orders to release from hold in bulk using the new check box selection option on Sales > Order > Release from Hold. See Release sales orders that are on hold.
- You can now view the Last Year to Month (LYTM) and Last Year to Date (LYTD) values under Summary History on the Customer Ledger. This information displays the total sales from the previous year including the current month.
- Added an access level to restrict access to the following sensitive General Ledger operations:
- Re-Index general ledger
- G/L period lock
- Allow re-open G/L year if period is locked
- Added an option to pay invoices from eCommerce Pro to the Web Options tab of the Customer Master.
- Added an eCommerce Pro configuration page from the Company menu.
- Now on the eCommerce checkout page, you can specify the person to whose Attention you want the item shipped. (eCommerce site upgrade is required.)
- You can now replace the DDI logo on your Dashboard with your own company logo. Copy the logo image to the path specified in the Company Master file under Default Image Storage Network Path. Then in the Company Master, set Dashboard Logo Image Name to the full path an file name of your logo.
- You can now toggle the display of Inform Mail notifications that appear when Inform starts up: click the bell icon in the lower left corner of the application windows to show/hide them. See Use your Inform Mail.
- Added an option to the Ship Via Master that enables you to bypass freight minimums configured for this customer on the Customer Master. With this option, you can ensure that freight charges will be applied for pricier shipping options such as Next Day Air and Overnight. See Create and configure Ship Via options.
Price Book Report
- You can now create a customer report showing future prices and the dates on which the prices take effect. In the Price Book Report setup, choose your customer, and then select the Display Column check boxes for Future Price and Future Date. You may include a version with Future Cost as well for your own use.
In this report, you may also filter the report to display only products belonging to a specific Price Contract. To learn how to use this report, see Price Book Report.
- You can now ensure that all of your price matrices are up to date by running Sales > Pricing > Re-index Price Matrices.
- You can now set default forecast parameters for all warehouses, and then apply custom changes on a warehouse by warehouse basis. See Set forecast parameters
Now in addition to custom forms for Price Quotes & Sales Orders, you can customize and print forms for Kit Production work orders! These forms include the same rich content of product images, descriptions, bullet points, color, and more, and you can print or these forms directly from order entry or work order production.
Work orders will also include notes added in Customer Master>Part Numbers, as well as any PDF attachments to the product assembly.
- In addition to printing custom kit production work order forms, you can now add the quantity used for the component items required for the kit assembly directly on the Components grid of the Work Orders page.
- Assembly products now support PDF attachments for kit productions.
- Added the ability to sort and filter the Product Import screen. See Import product information from a spreadsheet
- Substitute products can now be imported, continually adding to the number of subs.
- Removed the limit on the number of substitutes that can be associated with a product.
- You can now view a product's committed quantity on the Sales Order tab of Product Analysis, rather than just whether it is committed.
- You can now specify the inner and outer dimension of each product as part of its weights and measurements. This information is visible during Sales Order Entry and prints out on Sales Orders.
Schedule Cycle Count
- X Ranked products can now be included on the count schedule.
Vendor Consignment Warehouse
- You can now view vendor consignment warehouses in all inventory grids, including Sales Order and Product Analysis. Set the Company Master flag Combine Vendor Consignment warehouse in Sales order entry to No.
- You can now filter the Open Orders KPI by Order Writer.
- The Un-invoiced Purchase Order report now excludes those received into Vendor Consigned warehouses. See Un-Invoiced PO report.
- The Stock Receipts report now provides the option to run by entered date or by receiving date. This option is useful in tracking down inventory reconciliation issues. See Stock Receipts report.
- You can now add internal, external, and work order notes by specific product-part number combination per customer. These notes are viewable in the sales order, and may be optionally printed.
- When adding a new customer through Fast Customer, you can now assign a Branch to the customer.
- You can now change the Job ID associated with an invoice. Open the Invoice, and then click the Change button. See Change invoice details.
- Configure all customers or individual customers to receive their invoices overnight by fax or email. File > Customer > Master > Setup: General, Send POS Invoice Overnight.
- You can now include the original sales order number and the original customer P/O number in the external comments of a returned order. Set the Company Master Add Original Sales Order# and Customer P/O# to External Comments on Returns to Yes.
- Audit now includes Freight changes.
- If you procure an item on a Special PO or a Drop Ship, and that item has a different backordered quantity than the item's configured box quantity, you will see a warning enabling you to choose the box quantity instead.
- Recurring orders can now be created on any interval using the Custom Frequency.
- Trade Service's product catalog is available during product search. Click the TS button in the product search results to view their catalog. Select a product and it will instantly be created and added to the order. (Available as part of the Trade Service integration).
- You can now restrict access to suspending point of sale orders: use the access level Allow Suspend in POS.
- You can now restrict the option to Post to A/R for point of sale customers who do not have a sufficient credit balance (negative A/R amount ) to cover the amount billed. Set the Company Master flag Check Credit Balance for POS Customers before allowing Post to A/R to Yes.
- You can now periodically refresh the list of orders on hold in the Release Orders on Hold screen. See Release sales orders that are on hold.
Sales Order Staging
- You can now optionally hide external line item comments on the staging label. If you want to use this feature, contact DDI Customer Care.
- You can now default the quantity of printed staging labels to 1, regardless of the quantity of items staged by setting Print Staging Labels based on S/O, P/O Quantities to N. This setting is useful if you sell a product in bulk, such as 100 foot pipe selling in 1 foot sections. Product quantity is 100, but only a single staging label is needed.
- Added a Primary Bin check box in most Inform screens that display bins including Kit Production, Stock Transfer, Bin Allocation, Inventory Adjustment, & Shipping Confirmation.
- Bin Count now displays the Last Counted Date.
- Inventory Bin Allocation (Inform) now has a Transfer Qty column that subtotals the amount being bin transferred to the new location. Hover over this column for a breakdown of all transfer bins.
- Simplified authentication: you no longer need to assign DC permission per user in the User Master.
- Added the Ship Date to the Job List display.
- F4-BO function has been added to Sales Order Staging.
- More intelligent pick logic better handles multiple stages orders and bin overrides.
- The Assign Pick By screen has now been renamed to Sales Order Fulfillment, with the addition of a Ready For Pickup check box option that can be selected for Pick Up orders (based on Ship Via). This option will be used by the new Inform eCommerce Pro for customer notifications.
- You can now prevent pickers from order picking an order that is assigned to another user. Under File > Company > Warehouse: Warehouse Options, select the Disable Order Sharing check box.
- ST Picking has been redesigned to support real-time updates, multiple user transfer sharing, consolidating picking with Multi-Transfer, and an interface that mimics order picking.