Hello, fellow Infoplus users!
Inventory allocation is a critical aspect of Infoplus fulfillment operations, and it’s essential to understand how it works to ensure smooth order processing. In this post, we’ll dive into the nuances of inventory allocation, shedding light on various settings and configurations that empower you to take full control of your fulfillment processes. We also have a very extensive knowledge base article on this topic that we recommend you review.
To simplify how allocation works within Infoplus, we came up with what we call the Infoplus Allocation Formula. That is:
Location Settings + Item Settings + Fulfillment Plan Settings = Allocation Results.
Tweaking any variable in this formula will impact the results for allocation. Let’s quickly review each variable at play.
Item Settings: for item settings, it’s fair to say that the “operations” tab is going to be what you need to spend the most focus and thought on. The first thing you are going to see in the operations tab is some language around “mixing” rules. While this article does a pretty good job of explaining, some further context may help.
Labor Optimized is the most common allocation rule used among Infoplus customers. With Labor optimized selected, any combination of mixing rules will be accepted. This allows customers to make the most of their space with no mixing requirements.
Weak allows lot mixing within forward behavior types but does not allow lot mixing within standard location types. This allows our users to make the most of their “forward” space while keeping their standard locations segregated by receipt for FEFO/FIFO needs etc.
Strict is useful when you do not want to allow any lot mixing whatsoever. For example, If you have strict FIFO needs, using a strict allocation is the only way Infoplus can guarantee your picker is picking the oldest inventory. If you have weak or labor optimized, Infoplus will still be able to send your picker to the location with the oldest inventory, but if it is mixed with other receipts you run the risk of the user picking the wrong units.
Fulfillment Plan Settings: the two fields that have impact on allocation are the order smart filter and the location smart filter. Order smart filters impact allocation in two ways. First, if fulfillment plan automation is setup via scheduled plans, or the fulfillment plan is “manually ran” via the action menu, the order smart filter is used to determine what orders get pushed into the plan for processing. Subsequently, the max orders and batch options allow users to specify how many orders are pushed and batched together.
Location smart filters can be used if you want to determine specific areas of the warehouse that the allocation should happen from, regardless if there is available inventory elsewhere. imagine a customer with a single sku that they sell D2C to front doors but also B2C to big box retailers like Walmart and Target. As you can imagine, the way they process those orders are very different. This customer would likely set up a fulfillment plan specific to D2C and small parcel picking as well as a separate plan dedicated to B2B and case/pallet picking. If this customer has the warehouse setup properly, the D2C orders would be picked from easy to reach, forward locations while the B2B orders would be pulled from standard pallet or case locations. As the D2C area runs low, replenishments are created to keep pull stock from the pallets/cases but it never has pickers leaving their areas during the actual pick process.
Need to tell Infoplus what to allocate?
Infoplus offers an override receipts for fulfillment feature that can be utilized to tell Infoplus the exact units that should be allocated to an order, regardless of the allocation formula mentioned above.