Product: Transaction Manager
This article is designed to help provide a basic understanding of how the Item Catalog works within the Foundry version of Transaction Manager.
What is the Item Catalog?
The Item Catalog serves as a catalog, or table, of your item information. The main function of this tool is to help translate items as they are received on your purchase orders versus how they are entered in your internal business system.
Where is the Item Catalog?
Each Trading Partner record contains its own Item Catalog. Navigate to the Trading Partner record. In the Action Bar, click Transactions and select Item Catalog.
How does it work during export?
Imagine you own a business that sells party hats. Your most popular hat, the cone shaped hat with Frozen characters on it, is in your accounting system under the SKU of ElsaHat1. However, when you receive a purchase order from Parker’s Party Supplies, this item is listed with a SKU of FRZ123. Using the Item Catalog, you can maintain the unique item identifier used by the buyer, as well as the item identifier you use internally, allowing the item to translate from Transaction Manager to your ERP system during the export process.
If you have multiple buyers excited to purchase your party hats, it can become confusing to maintain which items each buyer is requesting, as the item identification used will most likely vary per buyer.
This is where the Item Catalog comes in! Let's provide a visual on this! Using the flow below as an example, there could be three different buyers asking to purchase the same item, but each using a different unique identifier. Let’s stick with item number ElsaHat1, which is the value you have in your system.
As these orders come in, the Item Catalog identifies how each buyer references the product and translates it to what your records expect in order to process within your business system.
The same logic applies on any imports (coming from your business system to Transaction Manager). The Item Catalog can help translate your item back to what your buyer is expecting on returning documents, such as invoices.
So, how exactly do I get the Item Catalog to work?
There are a couple pieces of information that are needed in order for the item values to translate between Transaction Manager and your accounting system. First, the Primary Item column contains the value being sent by your Trading Partner. From our example above, this would be FRZ123. Second, the Item Translation column would contain the corresponding value from your accounting system. From our example, this would be ElsaHat1. And, third, of course, you’ll want to make sure the item tables within your accounting system are filled in and up to date!
Is that it?
Not at all! The Item Catalog can also be used to store variables for each item. For example, you may not wish to have the Buyers Item Number, the Description, the SKU, and the UPC all stored within your accounting system. When importing a document into Transaction Manager, the Item Catalog can be referenced to populate those values based on their relation to the item. Creating a transaction by Turnaround? The Item Catalog can be used to pull values onto a transaction you're creating.
How do I manage the Item Catalog?
As you receive purchase orders from your Trading Partners, the item values will fill into the Item Catalog automatically. The only action you'll need to take will be to tell Transaction Manager how these items must look when they come to your business system, and how they will look upon return (aka Primary Item and Item Translation!). You can also delete items from the Catalog if you don't need them.
Adding a New Item from a Retailer?
As previously mentioned, new items will appear automatically in your Item Catalog if they are received on an incoming PO. However, you can add new items in your Item Catalog prior to this happening. Make sure the value you're entering matches what the Trading Partner will send on the PO. Integrated? Be sure to fill out the corresponding value in the Item Translation column as well!
Have a lot of items to add to your Item Catalog?
Check out this article for steps on how to import items into your Item Catalog using a .csv file.
For more instructions on configuration, reference the below helpful quick links:
- Updating the Item Translation Column
- Syncing with your business system (framework only; as applicable)
- What if my buyer uses the same item identifier as me?
Also, check out the Guided Tutorial for the Item Catalog in the Foundry Platform!