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Setting up item masters through an import

Depending on the size and condition of your existing item master data, SmartTurn expects this process to take anywhere from 1/2 hour to 2 hours. The process involves extracting data from the system you are currently using to track item masters, re-arranging a copy of this data to conform to the SmartTurn import system, and importing.

If you are updating item masters that already exist in SmartTurn, see Updating item masters through an import.

Before you start, there are some important things to know:

  • Warehouses must be set up in SmartTurn before you can import item masters. You can view item masters across all of your warehouses, and if you don't specify any warehouse handling details, SmartTurn will apply default values to item masters. But there must be some warehouses in the system for SmartTurn to set up your item masters. See Adding a warehouse.
  • It is helpful to have your business affiliates (in particular, vendors and owners) and item master groups set up in SmartTurn before you import item masters. This is because you have the option of specifying:

    If you have these defined already, you will be able to draw from your list of vendors, owners, and item master groups to fill the Preferred Vendor, Owner, and Group columns in the import spreadsheet.

  • The Warehouse Item Data tab lets you tell SmartTurn how you want item masters handled at your warehouse(s). If you have a single warehouse in your operation, you will have one row of data in this tab for each row in the Item Master Data tab. But if you have a multi-warehouse operation, the reorder points, reorder quantities, pick locations, putaway locations, and administrative statuses may differ on a per-warehouse basis. In this case, you will want to specify these details by entering a row of data for each warehouse for each item master in the Warehouse Item Data tab.
  • If you are importing custom field information, you need to "unprotect" the Item Master Data tab in order to add the custom field columns (see detailed instructions in the import template, SmartTurn_ItemMaster_Template.xls). To "unprotect" the worksheet, select Tools>Protection>Unprotect Sheet (Excel 2003) or Review>Changes>Unprotect Sheet (Excel 2007).

To import your item master data:

  1. Download the item master import template.

    The import template (SmartTurn_ItemMaster_Template.xls) contains detailed instructions on the First Time Upload Instructions tab. It also contains instructions tailored for when you are making updates to item masters, as opposed to creating them for the first time.

  2. Make an electronic copy of an existing spreadsheet of your item master data. (It might be helpful to print this out so you can clearly see the names of the columns your existing spreadsheet uses. Many accounting packages have an export feature to facilitate this process.) If you do not have your data in electronic format, you may elect to use this spreadsheet for data entry, or enter data directly at Operations>Item Masters.
  3. Open the import template. Look at the Item Master Data worksheet tab. (It might also be helpful for you to print this out so you can clearly see the names of the columns SmartTurn uses.)

    Tip: The column headers contain information. Click a column header cell in the Item Master Data worksheet tab to see important information about values for the field, whether the filed is required or optional, etc.

  4. Complete the SmartTurn item master import worksheets. There are three worksheets to complete: The Item Master Data tab (a); Warehouse Item Data tab (b); and the Unit of Measure Data tab (c).
    1. An item master is a master record for a type of inventory item. The item master includes the item description, materials and handling specifications, sales and fulfillment specifications, and warehouse-specific information. You need to create an item master for each item you want to track in your warehouse.

      For each column header in the Item Master Data tab, match a column header in the existing spreadsheet containing your item master data. Enter up to 1,000 rows of data in the Item Master Data tab. In other words, you may enter data for up to 1,000 item masters with each import you do of the SmartTurn_ItemMaster_Template.xls file.

      Notice that the column headers are different colors. The fields that correspond to the column headers are either optional, required, or conditionally required (that is, they may be required based on the value you have entered in another field). If you have defined custom fields for business process inventory, you will need to add new column headers with the names of your custom fields. Click into a column header cell to see more information in a pop-up.

    2. You have the option to specify or not to specify warehouse-specific data for your item masters such as reorder points, putaway locations, etc. If you choose not to specify this kind of information, you do not need to complete the Warehouse Item Data tab. If you do want to specify reorder points, putaway locations, etc. for your item masters, you need to complete the Warehouse Item Data tab at the same time as the Item Master Data tab, and make one import with all of the data. If this is the case, proceed with the instructions below:

      For each column header in the SmartTurn Warehouse Item Data tab, match a column header in the existing spreadsheet containing the warehouse-specific data for each of your item masters. Enter up to 5,000 rows of data in the Warehouse Item Data tab. In other words, you may enter warehouse-specific data for up to 5 warehouses for each item master with each import you do of the SmartTurn_ItemMaster_Template.xls file.

      Notice that the column headers are different colors. The fields that correspond to the column headers are either optional or required. Click into the cell to see more information in a pop-up.

      The Warehouse Item Data tab is dependent upon the Item Master Data tab. If you include data in the Warehouse Item Data tab for Items that aren't included in the Item Master Data tab, the upload will fail. However, since the dependency only goes one way, you may include items in the Item Master Data tab that you never describe in the Warehouse Item Data tab. In that case, the warehouse item data will use default values (if CREATE is the value in the Item Master Data Action column) or keep existing data as is (if UPDATE is the value in the Item Master Data Action column).

    3. The Unit of Measure Data tab lets you tell SmartTurn information about all the units of measure for each item master (see detailed instructions in the import template, SmartTurn_ItemMaster_Template.xls). You may enter up to 5,000 rows of data in the Unit of Measure Data tab. In other words, you may enter unit of measure information for up to 5 units of measure for each item master.

      Notice that the column headers are different colors. The fields that correspond to the column headers are either optional or required. Click into the cell to see more information in a pop-up.

  5. When the spreadsheet is complete, save the .xls. file to your computer. Then close it, and open up SmartTurn.

    Tip: You can rename the entire .xls file as you like. For instance, you can add a date, and the name of the item master group this file has item masters for: E.g. your file name could be "/help/Item_masters_for_frozen_products_2007_12_10.xls"

  6. Go to Operations>Item Masters. The Item Masters screen appears. If you have multiple warehouses, make sure you have "All warehouses" selected from the Warehouse drop-down at the top of the screen.
  7. Click Import iconImport. An Import appears, prompting you to locate the file on your computer. Follow the prompts, and identify the template you are importing.
  8. Click Upload. A message appears at the top of the Import screen. The message indicates whether the file data is formatted correctly, or whether SmartTurn has detected errors in the data.
    • If SmartTurn determines that the data in the file is formatted correctly, the screen displays a message: "The upload file contains all valid rows."

      If this is the case, continue with the import by clicking Import. When your import is complete, the screen closes and the item masters list refreshes. Continue to step 9.

    • If SmartTurn detects errors, the screen displays a warning: "The uploaded file contains some invalid rows. Click Import to import valid rows. Invalid rows will NOT be imported."

      If this is the case, look below the buttons in the Import screen. SmartTurn lists the specific errors by the spreadsheet row number.

      To correct errors:

    • Leave the Import screen open for reference, or copy the error statements and paste them into a text document for reference.
    • Locate your import file on your computer. Open it up, correct the errors, save, and repeat steps 6-8.
  9. Review your data in the Item Masters list at Operations>Item Masters, and on the individual detail pages, as necessary.

See Also

Importing item master data

Updating item masters through an import

Using exported item master data to update item masters through an import

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