Part Numbers, Item Numbers & Model Numbers

The item number, also know as the part number or model number, is the number most often used to refer to the item. If the item or model number is printed on the outside of the box, it will be easy to use and reference when selling. In some businesses, the model number could refer to a whole range of products. If you have to deal with this, then it's a good idea to add some extra characters to the end of the model number to help identify which type of item it is.

Windward System Five will allow you to have duplicate part numbers if you have to by turning on a soft switch to allow it. In real life, it seems many manufacturers use the same part numbers for different items because they don't always consult with each other before creating these numbers. You have the option of never allowing duplicate part numbers, only allowing duplicates if they are in different sub categories, or always allowing duplicate numbers. The choice is yours, depending on how you have to work.

Barcode Numbers

If your items come bar coded, then you can enter the bar code number into the item number field. UPC Bar code numbers are either 10 characters or 12 characters in length, depending upon if the bar code scanner is set to accept or reject the small numbers before and after the main bar code number. Windward System Five can handle both lengths, and other types of bar codes as well, up to 20 characters in length.

Supplier's Part Number

Believe it or not, we have found that most manufactures that use bar codes require that you order their products using their part number, not their bar code number. With Windward, you can enter both numbers, and have the supplier's part number print on the purchase orders when you order the goods.

Automatic Numbers

If your inventory arrives without any kind of part number or label, you can set Windward System Five to automatically create item numbers for you. The numbering sequence will be in the format of 3 digits (sub category) plus 4 digits (item number), and is compatible with the standard pricing guns. By using numbers only, the part number entry at point of sale can all be done rapidly on the numeric keypad, which is much faster than using letters and numbers. In addition, we have some short cut keys so that on average, you will only have to enter a 5 digit number instead of a seven digit number.

Alternate Supplier Parts

If you can purchase the same item from different suppliers, Windward can handle it. For any given item you can enter a list of alternate suppliers, their part numbers, and their cost of the part.

As an added bonus, if you turn on the soft switch the system can automatically find the inventory item when you enter any part number, including an alternate supplier's part number.

Superceded Parts

Another kind of inventory item is the multiple choice part. In a computer store, you could create a part called Monitor, and link it to several different monitors, such as monochrome VGA, 14" color VGA, 17" color VGA and so on. Then, when you sell the part called monitor, the system will pop up a list of the available monitors and give you the choice of which to choose today.

Note that you could also have a kit of several multiple choice items, so that you can "build" a computer on the fly by having the system stop and ask which case, CPU, hard drive, monitor, and printer to supply for the customer. If you just have a single multiple choice part for a given item, the system will simply replace the new item for the old part number entered. This could be used for superceded parts.

Serial Numbers

You can flag some of the items in the system for use with serial numbers. When you do this, you must enter the serial numbers of the items as you receive the stock, and also when you sell the items. The system will be able to tell you for each serialized item when you purchased it, who you got it from, the purchase order number it came in on, who you sold it to, the invoice number, the date of sale, how much you paid for it, and how much you sold it for. This kind of history is invaluable if you must return the item on warranty.

Note that you can sell the item on the invoice without the serial number, and then go back and add the serial number later, once the item has been picked from the warehouse and delivered to the customer.

Tire Numbers

Most tire manufacturers now have item numbers for each tire, but it wasn't so long ago they didn't. Regardless, by entering in a tire in the standard format such as LT270/65R13 the system can break out the three numbers for tire size, aspect ratio and rim size and place them in the three size fields. You when you search for tires, you will be able to enter the parameters to search for and list all applicable tires.