Basic question on consumption

Bear with me, I only have 8 months Epicor experience and most of that is in customization\baq,

My company has always used backflush. I think I’ve come to realize, all that means, is that the material is issued as needed for consumption (reporting quantity).

Moving forward, I am working to get this million dollar baby working to do more of what’s it intended to do - things like issuing materials to a job, material queues, etc.

From what I’ve played with - I can successfully request material to a job - it shows up on the mat queue, we process it from there and it’s moved to the appropriate WIP bin - which as I understand it, is just an off-limits bin for the resource (i.e - I can’t see the contents by looking at the normal bin). What doesn’t happen is an ISSUE. No problem I think, since the backflush creates an ISSUE…but wait

When I go to return any unused material (we often move more than what’s needed) - the material is moved from the WIP bin back to wherever BUT it also subtracts from my issued quantity. This is an issue because it is unissuing material that has already been used!

My next thought was ok, I’ll just ISSUE the material - but I am warned about possible duplicate issues due to backflush. So it seems to me, backflush needs to go away - does that seem right based on my ranting so far?

I gave a part a test by making one of it’s material NOT BACKFLUSH. All of sudden, I can ISSUE and even use the MASS ISSUE (which I’ve been dying to see - only for the material where backflush was removed). Also, the usefulness of the fulfillment bench starts to come to light. So my next test was to try to understand consumption WITHOUT backflush. I reported 1 piece without issuing any of the non-backflush material I expected to see either a message saying you can’t do this (lack of material) or deduction somewhere of the material. I did not see any change in quantities for the material either in bins or WIP. ??? Was anything consumed? If so from where? If not, can I safely write a rule to keep quantity from being reported with no material issued? I need some expertise and some basic schooling in the mater.

I’d like to add that now (with the way it is set up with backflush) - consumption of the materials happens right when quantity is reported.

I appreciate any light you all can shed.

[Selfish BUMP initiated]

We use BACKFLUSH process for any material we do not want to kit or issue manually. Typically material that is placed on the floor and used as needed. You can setup a kanban system (Cards or EPICOR) to move backflush material. Or you can use Material Requests if you want to use AMM.

If you have the part as Backflush and it is Related to an operation, once you do a quantity report, the system will issue Report x Req Per. If you backflush, the system will deduct whether you have inventory or not. If you manually issue and that part is set as BF, it will double issue. Once on your manual (it will warn you) and Once you report.

You can write a BPM to Warn or Halt a user from reporting if the Material and Rel op is not complete. IF you do partials, then a warning is what you need.


Thanks for the input Miguel. We are trying to get away from backflushing.

My #1 biggest question is - without backflush and no material issued - why does it let me report production? Where is it consuming material from?

Reported production quantities are tied to operations only. The system does not necessarily care if you have used any material to produce the end part. Backflushing forces the consumption of raw materials at the time of operation quantiity reporting.

If backflushing is turned off and no raw materials have been mass or individually issued, Epicor assumes you were able to make the by part without the use of inventory… reworking existing material, customer material, non stock items, magic dust, etc…

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That was the key piece, thanks.

With that knowledge, I’ll write some logic to keep the production from being reported if the material is not present in the bin.

What about costing after the fact? Does the job costing still assume the material (and it’s costs) were consumed according to BOM or no? I.E - will my job costs be wrong if the material isn’t actually consumed by the system?

Only issued material will be included in the final cost. The BOM only acts as a blue print and estimation of costs. Labor/operation time and material issues capture the actual cost.

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At the end of the day job costing information is only as accurate as the transactions entered, whether or not material or labour is backflushed or manually issued.
Monitor the job status via Job Tracker regularly to ensure the correct transactions are taking place. Be careful using backflush materials and ensure scrap/wastage levels are correct.

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“Be careful using backflush materials and ensure scrap/wastage levels are correct.”


That’s exactly it. Currently our inventory is getting out of whack due to those exact issues. I am having a hard time explaining to everyone that the small differences in shot weight, scrap values, and purge are compounding over the course of a month to cause this issues.

Additionally, we are still using pen and paper to request and deliver materials which is very problematic - and silly considering the software we have. I am just trying to get over the hump of REALLY understanding all the moving parts of process in E10 so I can successfully transition my hesitant company to proper inventory control, issuing and deliver of materials.

I appreciate everyone’s input and expertise!

Also, at Job Closing, you can see if material is issued and if not, then you can use the Backflush checkbox to issue material.

If you are going to backflush for anything not discreetly counted (and really for things that are) you need to have a robust cycle count program to adjust for the usage differences from real to estimated via scrap. That’s the cost of automagically issuing material.