Business Central: Supply Chain Management

Visibility across purchasing, manufacturing, inventory, and warehouses

Managing your Supply Chain with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central

Deliver products on time and adapt to changing business models with visibility across purchasing, manufacturing, inventory, and warehouses.

Purchase invoicing

Set up, post, and print purchase invoices and purchase credit memos.

Purchase order management

Manage quotes, blanket orders, and purchase order processes. Creating a purchase order differs from creating a purchase invoice directly. The quantity available is adjusted as soon as an amount is entered on a purchase order line, but it is not affected by a purchase invoice until it is posted. Easily manage partial receipts, receive and invoice separately and create prepayment invoices for the purchase order, use quotes and blanket orders in the purchase phase. Quotes and blanket orders do not affect inventory figures.

Purchase return order management

Create a purchase return order in order to compensate your own company for wrong or damaged items. Items can then be picked from the purchase return order. You can set up partial return shipments or combine return shipments in one credit memo and link purchase return orders with replacement purchase orders.

Alternative order addresses

Set up multiple addresses to manage orders from vendors who have more than one shipping site. These additional locations can then be selected by the purchasing agent when creating a purchase order or invoice. Deliver products on time and adapt to changing business models with visibility across purchasing, manufacturing, inventory, and warehouses.

Purchase invoice discounts

Calculate invoice discounts automatically. The discount can differ from vendor to vendor with different minimum amounts (also in different currencies) and different rates, depending on the size of the invoice. The discount is calculated on the individual item lines and becomes part of the net sum of the invoice.

Purchase line discounting

Manage multiple item negotiated purchase price discounts as based on such parameters as minimum quantity, unit of measure, currency, item variant and time period. The best unit cost, as based on the highest discount, is calculated for the purchase line when the order details meet the conditions specified in the purchase line discounts table.

Alternative vendors

Manage purchase of the same item from different vendors. Set up alternative vendors for items, specify typical lead times, and record price and discount agreements with each vendor.

Vendor catalog

Offer items to customers that are not part of regular inventory, but can be ordered from vendors or manufacturers on a one-off basis. Register these items as non-stock items but treat them like regular items.

Supply chain management: Inventory control

Inventory management

Set up stock items and specify properties such as unit of measure, costing method, inventory posting group, and unit cost and price. Post item transactions, such as sales, purchase, and negative and positive adjustments from item journals. Store quantity and cost records of posted transactions in the inventory ledger, and use it as the basis for valuation and other costing calculations. Set up non-inventory and services in the same way as stock items and use them in sales, purchase, or consumption transactions, but without need to keep track of stock and costing.

Item categories

Group items in a hierarchy and define custom categories that include specific attributes.

Item attributes

Add custom data, such as colour, country of manufacture, size, or product dimensions, to applicable items, to supplement built-in global item fields. Use Azure AI to let Business Central analyse images of your items and automatically suggest attributes.

Define types of attribute options, including list and text, and integer and decimal that can include units of measure. Translate attribute names and options to multiple languages.

Block attributes or attribute options from being used, if for example, they no longer are applicable.

Item tracking

Manage and track serial and lot numbers. Assign serial or lot numbers manually or automatically, receive and ship multiple quantities with serial or lot numbers from a single order line entry. Use the additional customisable item tracking dimension to keep track of simple WMS packages or pallets.

Multiple locations

Manage inventory in multiple locations, such as production plants, distribution centres, warehouses, show rooms, retail outlets, and service cars. Inventory on each location can have its own location-specific financial dimensions or posting rules. Enable CFO or financial leaders to get information about inventory using financial reporting.

Stock-keeping units

Manage stock-keeping units (SKUs). Identical items with the same item number can be stored in different locations and managed individually at each location. Add cost prices, replenishment, manufacturing information, and so on, based on the location.

Item variants

Item variants are a great way to keep your list of items under control, especially if you have a large number of items that are almost identical—for example, when they vary only in colour. Rather than setting up each variant as a separate item, you can set up one item and then specify the various colours as variants of the item. Variants are supported in all areas of product including manufacturing and planning, unlocking scenarios in industries where for example, inventory is tracked by revision.

Location transfers

Track inventory as it moves from one location to another. Account for the value of inventory in transit and at various locations.

Shipping agents

Set up multiple shipping agents (for example, UPS, DHL, external carriers, or your own carrier) and relate their services (express, overnight, standard) with shipping time. Associate default shipping agents and their services with individual customers or specify those details on sales orders and transfer orders to improve accuracy of order promising.


Set up calendars with working and non-working days. Assign a base calendar to customers, vendors, locations, companies, shipping agent services, and the service management setup and make changes when needed. Use calendar entries in date calculations on sales, purchase, transfer, production, and service orders, and the requisition and planning worksheets.

Item charges

Manage item charges. Include the value of additional costs such as freight or insurance in the unit cost or unit price of an item.

Item references

Identify the items a customer is ordering based on item numbers other than your own. Store and easily access cross-reference information from customers, vendors, and manufacturers, as well as generic numbers, universal product codes (UPCs), and European article numbers (EANs).

Item substitutions

Link items that have the same or similar characteristics to suggest alternatives for out-or-stock items on orders. Provide extra service to customers by offering lower cost alternatives.

Item budgets

Define sales and purchase budgets on the customer, vendor, and item levels. Prepare and record a sales budget that can serve as input to decision makers in operational areas such as purchasing and logistics. Get information about expected demand and use it in business discussions with customers. Finalise budgets and track the actual sales performance by calculating the variance. Export budget figures to Excel for flexible calculations in the budgeting process.

Analysis reports

Provide decision makers with insightful details that inform day-to-day decisions regarding sales, purchases, and product portfolio management. Build on item entries to provide customisable analytics that let you add and combine analysis objects, such as customers, items, and vendors, according to your needs.

Cycle counting

Manage cycle counting to verify inventory record data used to maintain and increase inventory accuracy. You can set up cycle counting on the item or SKU level.

Supply Chain Management: Planning and availability

Supply planning

Plan material requirements based on demand with support for master production scheduling and materials requirements planning. Generate optimal suggestions for replenishing inventory transfers based on the item’s current and future demand and availability, as well as a variety of planning parameters, such as minimum and maximum quantities and reorder quantities.

Use automatic orders for assembly, purchase, production, and transfers, and action messages to balance supply and demand. Use time buckets when planning material requirements.

Demand forecasting

Manage demand forecasting based on items. Input demand (sales) forecasts for products and components in a more convenient way (daily, monthly, quarterly). Create production and purchase orders that consider the demand forecast, available inventory, and plan requirements.

Sales and inventory forecasting

Get deep insight into potential sales and a clear overview of expected stock-outs by using the Sales and Inventory Forecast extension. Leverage its built-in Azure AI capabilities to generate reliable forecasts that make it easier to manage replenishment.

Order promising

Promise accurate order shipment and delivery dates based on an item’s current and future availability. When items are not available to meet a customer’s requested delivery date, calculate the earliest shipment date as either an available-to-promise date that is based on upcoming uncommitted supply or a capable-to-promise date, which is when items can become available.

Drop shipments

Handle orders that ship directly from the vendor to Supply chain management: Planning and availability (continued) the customer without having to physically stock items in your inventory. Keep track of order costs and profit. Link sales orders to purchase orders to control the sequence of posting tasks.

Order planning

Plan supply for all types of demand on individual orders using a simple supply planning tool.

Calculate availability on the fly

Once quantity is entered in any type of order: purchase, sales, production or transfer, the system immediately updates the availability information, notifying the user who enters the order about current and future situation. Be fully equipped with information about inventory availability by date, event, variant, location, even bill of material and unit of measure.

For more information and to discuss your specific needs, contact us today.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central

We Are Your Local Northampton Microsoft Solutions Partner