Tracking raw material physically issued to the shop floor

We currently use a back flush inventory system. We need a way to track actual material consumption by part (not just the usage in the BOM) We need to track material that has been physically provided to the shop floor by job. We have a single bin location.

The PartTran table holds this. Try filtering by the JobNum field. Note the TranType field too to see what type of transaction you are looking at. This is an easy dashboard. Job Tracker uses this for the material transactions.

Dan, what is the physical unit of measure of the issue and the consumption ie are you physically issuing a full unit, but typically consuming in partials of a full unit (think 25l container of something consumed in ml)?

Is there any issuing of material happening on system and is there scope to do this if it doesn’t currently happen?

I ran into this issue at my previous employer. Accounting who controlled E10 wanted backflush for simplicity, but then bitched about not having accurate job numbers.

You could:
A) Simple turn off backflush and issue the material, returning unused.
B) Write your own custom “issuing” - which essentially would just track material in/out of jobs.

At the moment we pull materials off a pick list, and the problem is we are consuming larger quantities of paint (in gallons) than our production should require. So management is adjusting a percent number to the BOM’s over all, but before that happens the question is what is being issued out. Since we do not transfer quantity to a bin an audit of the PartTran would not provide any information but it does give us some ideas on how it could if we implemented better inventory controls (thanks Jason Woods).

Thank you all for your replies, we need to do a better job with inventory controls I just didn’t know where and how and the responses help fill in some of that.


The problem with backflushing is that it’s static numbers. If you make the BOM too low, you wont see usage and your inventory will show more qty than you actually have.

We do the following for steel - we buy and issue in full sheets but in reality consume portions of a full sheet often in very small quantities for a particular jobs (we nest multiple jobs in the same sheet size to get full utilistaion/minimise setups). On a regular basis we will have offcuts which will be reused but which will result in a rectangular sheet turned into a shape that is two circles, three stars and the Millennium Falcon. There are also issues with how Epicor aggregates these partials if booked back into stock (0.3 of a sheet plus 0.5 plus 0.2 would show 1 sheet on hand but you can’t cut something that needs a contiguous 0.8 of sheet from those aggregated partials and it gives an incorrect picture of material on hand - this si not an issue specific to Epicor btw.

To further complicate this we frequently use a different size sheet than specified on the bom - for example nested in larger size with lots of other jobs (cost will be same as same weight of material is used) to maximise utilisation/minimise offcut/scrap

Prior to E10 we were not transacting steel on system and there was no way the business could support folks issuing to jobs as it would be hundreds of small transactions every day. This meant we had no real idea of what we had used or what we had on hand

In order to get some degree of traceability of what we have on hand/not on hand and usage as full sheets, we did the following.

-A non-nettable fictitious bin called SHOP was setup.

-All steel was set to backflush and this fictitious bin was set up as the primary bin for each part. However any steel purchased uses the default purchasing parameters so is booked into the default stock bin (Stores) not the fictitious bin, which is purely for backflushing and as it is non nettable has no impact to on hand or stock value.

  • We issue full sheets from stock miscellaneously (ie not to job, they are just gone from stock) - either the operators can do this as they physically take the sheets or as some do, they will issue what they expect to use at start of shift) If a full sheet is not used it can be miscellaneously returned. This will be the sheet size used, which may not necessarily be the one on the bill of material

  • When the operations completes, material is backflushed and job costs correctly updated, however the material on hand is unaffected.

  • We do nothing on system with offcuts, only full sheets. The use “management with their eyes” to manage the offcuts including notifying the buyers not to buy material as they have adequate offcuts to complete jobs. If they use an offcut they just don’t issue a full sheet, Epicor will backflush just the same

I think you could adapt this to your scenario, only issuing full containers of paint miscellaneously - you do periodically need to get folks to validate and correct the on hand quantity in the event that some issue may have been missed - you will also be able to see what you have actually used (issued) versus what you were expected to use (backflushed) - this will give you an idea of the % incorrect your BOM’s are

We also have a paint plant - however historically putting paint on the bills of materials was too hard for our engineers, for the kind of reasons you specify, and to date, everything except the purchasing, was done off system with a three times a week stock take and we do on occasion end up with too much/no stock of particular paints = we are in the process adapting and implementing the above approach for steel to cope with paint, keep doing the stock takes but based on system reports and reflect stock on hand/used by miscellaneously issuing paint to reflect stock movements between stock takes - we will put in rudimentary minimum stock levels with system based warnings when on hand goes below this - not perfect, but we do not have the transactional discipline to do this properly and will still be better off than we currently are.

1 Like


That is brilliant! I’m probably asked twice a month how to handle offcut situations, and this is by far the most robust method I’ve seen.

I will shamelessly steal (with attribution!) and pass along.

Many thanks!

Ernie, no problem.

Sorry one thing to note you need to may also need to set the cos/wip accounts correctly and default teh miscellaneous issue to an appropriately configured reason code to handle this properly form an accounting perspective - what you need to do is have the miscellaneous transaction both credit and debit the same account by the same amount (usually your inventory account) - this reduces the value of your inventory but does not move the value into another gl account. The backflushing is what posts to the cost of goods sold. If I remember correctly, not having the miscellaneous transaction net off in the same account will see the material “consumed twice” in the GL.

If trying this do it in test and use the cos/wip reports to track exactly what is happens and tweak the cos/wip gl accounts and reason codes accordingly.

1 Like

Thank you for all the good information, I will try and report back how and what we did.

I appreciate the help.


Will the Sheet and Paint remove from Job Pick List?
I have same problem like you and we also solved with create a bin for those material pick to Shop Floor in bulk way, but then in the Job Pick List i would like to remove those materials so that warehouse personnel will not double pick for the same materials again.
Do you have any idea how to do this?

Many thanks!

I principle the job pick list will still show this until the operation is complete. We don’t pick steel and paint per job so we have created a modified pick list that filters these product groups out and only shows the things that we actually pick (fasteners, bosses, seals etc)

Thanks, James.

A method I’ve used in the past for sheet metal is to consume sheet stock in square feet - with a scrap factor that estimates the amount of drop-off that your facility typically consumes.