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wherein the order accept process includes review of an order lead time required by the customer, a requested order delivery schedule, the customer's credit and payment history, an available inventory of customer ordered goods, a production time to build additional inventory, and availability of the carrier to meet the requested order delivery schedule. PRISM software provided by Marcam is used to operate IBM AS/400 mini computers to support terminals using Flashpoint software. The aforementioned vendor software and patent are hereby incorporated by reference.
wherein the step of retrieving the ordered goods includes determining a location for each of the ordered goods in an inventory storage facility, recording a plurality of goods pulled by location, moving the pulled goods to a staging area and picking the customer order from the pulled goods. SMS software, supplied by ITLS of Canada, resides on the AS/400 platform to support the logistics function and TRACS software supplied by Westerley Development Corp., supports PCs driven by the TRACS software. None of the foregoing software is integrated to provide an efficient order management system.
The PRISM software resides on AS/400 1.a., Software 2000 resides on AS/400 1.b., and Shipment Management System (SMS) software resides on AS/400 1.c. Also, residing in these PCs are solution software 1.f. The implementation of both solution softwares (1.f. Generally, the GUI (graphic user interface) consolidates the various fields by pulling data from numerous screens into one screen used by a customer service representative.
for creating DEALS, purchasing interface, pricing and profitability (hereinafter described). When a specific field is entered, the interface updates the supporting multiple screens thereby saving time while interacting with a customer.
It is still another object of the invention to efficiently manage inventory.
The system of this invention manages customer orders using vendor supplied software systems interfaced on a real-time basis to touch the data in each system on a real-time basis. Likewise the system includes a logistics function for processing orders and consolidating them into appropriate loads for delivery over transportation systems.
In effect, there is horizontal communication between the various components of the system such as inventory, purchasing, order management and receipt, logistics and inventory to have continual data flow without using a vertical software interface. Integrated in the system is an inventory management system that cooperates with the order management function, financial services function and logistics function to properly manage the raw material and finished product through a warehouse for delivery to a customer.
wherein the module that determines a service rating for each carrier evaluates an on time delivery rate, a rate of claims for damaged or missing goods and a frequency of rejection for picking up a load for delivery. This unique concept allows for continual updating of the system over time.
This application is a continuation of application Ser. 09/083,681, filed May 22, 1998, which is a continuation of application Ser. Most importantly, a deal with a customer is settled before the order is taken by using the horizontal data flow between systems to verify availability to meet the order, integrate customer data and price the deal while speaking to the customer.
As a result, customer orders are received on a real-time basis using screens that are user friendly to promptly take orders, to verify customer data and to verify the ability to meet those orders. Also included in the system is a purchasing system based upon an electronic catalog that streamlines the purchasing function by using blanket vendor orders to approve the purchase of the necessary materials to support the system. Related Art A software package named Flashpoint provided by Knowledge Ware, Inc.