Updated: November 3, 2020 7:35am

Regional Inventory

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Prism's Regional Inventory feature provides an effective solution for retailers who need to balance central versus local control of inventory. When using regional inventory, the retailer creates one or more regions and assigns individual subsidiaries to the regions. Each region has a designated master subsidiary. Set the regional inventory options for the master subsidiary. The options you select indicate the Inventory values that are controlled by the master subsidiary. Any changes to the selected values that are sent by a child subsidiary are ignored. Any changes to the selected values made at the master will propagate to the region's child subsidiaries. Note: If you select a child subsidiary, the UI allows you to make changes; however, because it is a child subsidiary, the changes will not be applied.
Limitations

  • There currently is no Regional flag for styles. To include an entire style in regional inventory, the user must select the Regional flag for each individual item in the style.
  • New regions and changes to a region (e.g. adding/removing subsidiaries or changing the master) ARE replicated to RIL; however, deactivations and deletions are not. In other words, if you deactivate or delete a region in Prism, the region will continue to exist in RIL's list of regions (and vice versa). For this reason, once you start using Regional Inventory in Prism, only make changes in Prism.
  • Settings related to using currency exchange rates and currency conversion are scheduled for future release.
  • Price changes made at the master are applied to the same price level in child subsidiaries. For example, if a price adjustment is applied to Price Level 2 at the master subsidiary, then the Price Level 2 price at the child subsidiaries will be updated. Prism doesn't check the price level name, only the price level's position within the list. For this reason, the Active Price Level at the master and child subsidiaries should be the same price level, position-wise (no matter if the price level names are different).
  • You can create regions without selecting a master subsidiary; however, regional inventory options are not applied until a master is selected.

What problem is being solved?
Balancing central versus local control of Inventory is a challenge for multi-national retailers. Especially, employees (and customers) benefit when item descriptions are in the local language and item prices are in the local currency. The corporate headquarters, meanwhile, benefits from having item information standardized across subsidiaries to the greatest extent possible. In this type of setup, the item's UPC is selected as being controlled by the master subsidiary (as well as other key values, if needed). This means the item UPC will be the same at all locations, enabling item performance to be tracked at the global (corporate) level. At the HQ, the item description is entered in English, the language set up for the master. At each child subsidiary, the item description can be replaced with a description in the local language, making it easier for employees to locate and list items on documents.

Basic Steps for Regional Inventory
1.    Configure security permissions for Regional Inventory
2.    Designate one or more subsidiaries as eligible to become masters by editing the Subsidiary record and selecting the Master checkbox. When choosing a master for a corporate region, only those subsidiaries that have the "Master" checkbox selected will be available for selection.
3.    Add one or more corporate regions. Note: A default corporate region is defined. All subsidiaries, by default, belong to the default corporate region.
4.    Add more regions and assign locations to each region. Group the regions under the corporate region.
5.    Configure Global Preferences > Corporate Regions > Options.
6.   Mark individual items as regional inventory items (by selecting the "Regional" checkbox in the item record).

Sample Edit Region modal:

Edit region

Configure Regional Inventory Options
In Admin Console > Global Preferences > Corporate Regions > Options, select the Inventory information that will be controlled by the master subsidiary.
The screen is divided into two areas:

  • In the Merchandise Options area, you can select to automatically have new items, departments and/or vendors be regional (Regional checkbox automatically selected).
  • In the Regional Inventory Options area, select the check box for each item information type values that will be controlled by the master subsidiary. Click the "All" checkbox to select all values.

 Sample Global Preferences > Corporate Regions > Options:
Global preferences Corporate Regions Options

Merchandise Options

Option Description
Default new items as regional If this checkbox is selected, when a new item is created, the item's Regional checkbox will also be automatically selected.
Default new departments as regional If this checkbox is selected, when a new department is created, the department's Regional checkbox will also be automatically selected.
Default new vendors as regional If this checkbox is selected, when a new vendor is created, the vendor's regional checkbox will also be automatically selected.

Regional Inventory Options

Option Description
Price  Select this option to include Prices in the Regional Inventory. If selected, any price changes made at the child subsidiaries will be discarded when received at the HQ. Any price changes made at the HQ will be replicated to child subsidiaries, overwriting any price differences that exist at the child subsidiaries
Cost Select this option to include Costs in the Regional Inventory. If selected, any cost changes made at the child subsidiaries will be discarded by the HQ when received during replication. Any cost changes made at the HQ will be replicated to child subsidiaries, overwriting any cost differences that exist at the child subsidiaries.
ALU Select this option to include the ALU field in Regional Inventory. If selected, any changes to the ALU made at the child subsidiaries will be discarded by the HQ when received during replication. Any ALU changes made at the HQ will be replicated to child subsidiaries, overwriting any different ALU value at the child sub.
UPC Select this option to include the UPC field in Regional Inventory. If selected, any changes to the UPC made at the child subsidiaries will be discarded when it arrives at the HQ during replication. Any UPC changes made at the HQ will be replicated to child subsidiaries, overwriting any different UPC value at the child sub.
Description 3, Description 4 Select the Description 3 and Description 4 checkboxes to include either or both of those fields in the Regional Inventory. If selected, any changes made to Description 3 and/or Description 4 at the child subsidiaries will be discarded by the HQ when received during replication.
Inventory UDF Select this option to include Inventory user-defined and auxiliary fields in the Regional Inventory
Vendor UDF Select this option to include Vendor user-defined fields in the Regional Inventory. If selected, any changes made to vendor UDF fields at the child subsidiary will be discarded when received at the HQ. Changes made to vendor UDF fields at the HQ will be replicated to the child subsidiaries, overwriting any differences that may exist at the child Subs.
Tax Code Item Tax Code. For example, in some regions, an item might be assigned a special tax code.
Unorderable Item Unorderable status. For example, in some regions, certain items can't be sold and therefore should not be ordered.
Scales Select this option to include Inventory grid scales in the Regional Inventory. If selected, any changes made to grid scales at child subsidiaries will be discarded by the HQ when received during replication. Changes made to grid scales at the HQ will be replicated to the child subsidiaries, overwriting any differences that may exist at the child Subs.
Use Exchange Rate for Cost If selected, when sending Cost from the master subsidiary to the child subsidiary, the exchange rate for the currencies involved is applied.
Define exchange rates between the currencies used by the master and child subsidiaries in Admin Console > Global Preferences > Currency.
If this preference is disabled, then whatever amount is entered as the Cost at the master subsidiary will be copied directly to the Cost field at the child subsidiary.
Round Cost Conversion Select the number of decimal places that will be rounding. For example, if set to "2", then a number like 1.009 will be rounded to 1.01. If set to "1", a number like 1.009 will be rounded to 1.0
Use Exchange Rate for Prices  If selected, when sending Price from the master subsidiary to the child subsidiary, the exchange rate for the currencies involved is applied.
Define exchange rates between the currencies used by the master and child subsidiaries in Admin Console > Global Preferences > Currency.
If this preference is disabled, then whatever amount is entered as the Price at the master subsidiary will be copied directly to the Price field at the child subsidiary.
Round Price Conversion/Round Cost Conversion Select the number of decimal places that will be rounding. For example, if set to "2", then a number like 1.009 will be rounded to 1.01. If set to "1", a number like 1.009 will be rounded to 1.0

Mark Items (or styles) as Regional
1.    At the master subsidiary, select or display the item.
2.    Click the Edit button.
3.    Select the Regional Inventory checkbox.
4.    Click Save. Changes made to the item at the master subsidiary are sent to other subsidiaries in the region. (If the Regional Inventory field is not selected, changes are specific to the subsidiary.)
If you select the Regional Inventory checkbox for an item, the change is applied to the individual item only.
If you select the Regional Inventory checkbox for a style, the change is applied to the entire style.
When a user creates an item for a style, Prism checks the following:

  • Is the creating subsidiary a child sub?
  • Are any of the items in the style regional?
  • Is the "Create Items for Regional Styles at Child Sbs" permission assigned?

About the Corporate Region
The Corporate Region is a collection of subsidiaries, where one of the members is designated as 'Master' to control inventory propagation.

  • Each Corporate Region has a single master subsidiary.
  • A Master Subsidiary can be a member of more than one region; however, any sub that has been designates as a Master Subsidiary cannot also be designated as a child Subsidiary in a different region.
  • Corporate Regions may have child member subsidiaries.
  • Child subsidiaries may be members of multiple corporate regions.
  • Migration of existing regions migrated from RIL (or RP 9) is supported.

Designating a Subsidiary as the Master Subsidiary
Go to the Admin Console. Click Global Preferences. Locate the desired Subsidiary (e.g. by typing the name of the Subsidiary in the Search field). Click the pencil icon. In the Subsidiary record, click the Master Subsidiary checkbox.

Managing Price and Cost between Master and Child Subsidiary
Care must be exercised when managing Price and Cost between the master and child subsidiaries, especially when multiple currencies and exchange rates are involved.

  • Define exchange rates between the currencies used by the master and child subsidiaries (Global Preferences > Currency > Exchange Rates).
  • Configure regional inventory settings to use these exchange rate calculations when sending price and cost information from the master to child subsidiaries. To use these exchange rates with regional inventory items, select the following options in Global Preferences > Corporate Region > Options: Use Exchange Rate for Prices, Use Exchange Rate for Costs. If you don't enable these options, then whatever amount is entered as the Price or Cost at the master subsidiary will be copied to the Price or Cost field at the child subsidiary.

Round Price Conversion/Round Cost Conversion
In Global Preferences > Corporate Region > Options, select the number of decimal places that will be used for rounding. For example, if set to "2", then a number like 1.009 will be rounded to 1.01. If set to "1", a number like 1.009 will be rounded to 1.0
Using Price Levels with the Regional Inventory Feature
If you use Price Levels and Regional Inventory, make sure to define price levels in the same order at each subsidiary. When Prism matches price levels, it matches based on the price level's order in the list, not by the name (order position can be assured of being consistent across subsidiaries while price Level names could be spelled differently at different subsidiaries).
For example, consider a situation in which there are three Price levels: PriceLvl, Price1 and Price2 and the sequence differs at the master subsidiary and child subsidiary.

At Master Subsidiary At child Subsidiary
1. PriceLvl 1. PriceLvl
2. Price1 2. Price2
3. Price2 3. Price1

In this situation, if a user at the child subsidiary updates the price for a price level named Price1, the user in fact updates the price for Price 2. Similarly, when a user updates the price for a price level named Price2, the user in fact updates Price1.
When price or cost is updated at any subsidiary, Prism creates an adjustment memo for each subsidiary that receives updated information. The memo identifies the price and cost of the given subsidiary at the time of the change. Prism does not communicate quantity information; therefore, quantity adjustment memos are not created.

"Create Items for Regional Styles at Child SBS" permission
The permission "Create Items for Regional Styles at Child SBS" controls the ability of users at a child subsidiary to create non-regional items for a regional style. This permission prevents styles from becoming broken when users edit style definition fields.
Refer to the following table for information about what Prism will do:

Style item created at child sub? Style contain regional items? Create Items For Regional Styles At Child Sbs setting Result
Yes No N/A Item is created and added to style
No Yes N/A Item is created and added to style
No No N/A Item is created and added to style
Yes Yes None User is prevented from creating the item. The following message is displayed: "Style contain items that are regional items. Create new items for this style from the master subsidiary."
Yes Yes Normal Item will be created as non-regional.
Yes Yes Override The following message is displayed: "Permission is needed to create an item for a style that contains regional items. It is recommended that this item should be created from the master subsidiary." If an override user enters credentials, then the item will be created as non-regional


Regional Inventory Examples
Example 1: A shoe retailer with five subsidiaries
In this example, the retailer designates SBS 001 as the master subsidiary, then:
1.    Defines a global region and creates a district.
2.    Adds each of the other subsidiaries to the locations for the Region/District in system preferences.
3.    Selects the inventory fields to be controlled by the master subsidiary.
When the retailer makes changes to inventory at the master subsidiary, Prism automatically communicates those changes to the retailer's other subsidiaries during Day-to-Day replication

Example 2: A sporting goods retailer with 10 subsidiaries
Five of the subsidiaries are in the U.S. and five of the subsidiaries are in Japan. The retailer defines two regions, East and West, and assigns his subsidiaries to one of the regions.

  • SBS 001 is designated as the master subsidiary for the West.
  • SBS 006 is designated as the master subsidiary for the East.

When the retailer makes changes to inventory at SBS 006 and then performs data replication, Prism automatically communicates those changes to the other subsidiaries in the East region.
Migrating Existing Regions and Districts from RIL (or Retail Pro 9)
If you have set up Regions and Districts in RIL (or Retail Pro 9), you can migrate them to Prism. If Region and District labels match, the displayed label will be per 'Region'. If Region and District labels differ, the displayed label will show both 'Region' and 'District' labels, Edits to existing the existing label in Prism will affect both Region and District labels (to match).

Regional Inventory Examples
Example 1: Local Descriptions
A common use of the Regional Inventory feature is to allow item descriptions to be entered in the local language. Having item descriptions in the local language makes it easier for employees to do item lookups and other tasks.
In this example, SBS 1 is the Master Subsidiary. Subsidiaries 2 and 3 are child subsidiaries.
Corporate regions
In Regional Inventory Options, Price, Cost, UPC and Orderable flag are selected. These are the key fields controlled by the Master Subsidiary. Edits to these fields made by a user at a child subsidiary will not persist. Other fields can be edited at child subsidiaries. Notice that Regional Inventory Options include Description 3 and 4 but not Description 1 or 2. The expectation is that Description 1 and 2 will be edited at child subsidiaries.
At the Master Subsidiary a user creates a new Inventory item and selects the Regional Inventory flag. The following descriptions are entered:
Description 1: MY NEW ITEM
Description 2: MORE INFO ABOUT MY NEW ITEM
Because the Regional Inventory flag is selected, users at child subsidiaries can edit the Description 1 and Description 2 fields in the local language.
SBS 001 edit inventory

The new item created at the Master sub must be replicated to the child subsidiaries. This is done by creating a profile that includes the "inventory" resource and has each of the child subsidiaries selected.
After the item is replicated to SBS 002, a user logs in at SBS 002 and uses Inventory Lookup to display the item and then updates the Description 1 and Description 2 fields. In this example, the user appends the text "AT SUB 2" to the existing descriptions configured at the Master Sub; however, the same concept applies when replacing with text in a foreign language.
Description 1: MY NEW ITEM AT SUB 2
Description 2: MORE INFO ABOUT MY NEW ITEM AT (truncated due to 30-character maximum length of Description fields)
SBS 002 Edit Inventory

The changes are saved and persist at the child sub. When the regional inventory item is listed on a transaction created at SBS 002, the Description 1 shows the local description, making life easier for the Associate.
SBS 002 New transaction

Viewing Regional Inventory in RIL
When viewing Inventory in RIL, users can see the original description when viewing Inventory for SBS 001.
RIL Inventory Sub 001
 Users can also see the updated description when viewing Inventory for SBS 002.
RIL SBS 002 InventoryAlternatively, by selecting "ALL" users can see the master sub and child sub descriptions at the same time.
RIL SBS ALL
 
Regional Inventory Example 2: Multiple Corporate Regions
Consider a retailer with 10 subsidiaries. Five of the retailer's subsidiaries are in the U.S. and five are in Japan. The retailer defines two regions, East and West, and assigns the five U.S. subsidiaries to the West Corporate Region and the five Japan subsidiaries to the East Corporate Region. SBS 001 is designated as the master subsidiary for the West. When the retailer makes changes to inventory at SBS 001 and then performs data replication, Prism automatically communicates those changes to the subsidiaries in the West region. SBS 006 is designated as the master subsidiary for the East. When the retailer makes changes to inventory at SBS 006 and then performs data replication, Prism communicates those changes to the subsidiaries in the East region.