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FAQ - Do you need a separate part number when parts are the same but tested to different specs?

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Where there are two components that are graded or tested to a different standard they are not interchangeable (i.e. they do not have the same form, fit and function) so must have a different part number and a third part number for the purchased raw ingredient when necessary. It is 3 part numbers to manage but it is simple and easy to understand.

If the tests can be built into the processes to make Product A and Product B, this will simplify planning and purchasing further as there is only the raw ingredient to manage but if the tests are unacceptably long or have to be done as part of the goods acceptance process this approach would not be practical.

If the planning software does not allow alternative ingredients, the Standard Y (higher spec) ingredient can be shown as an alternative by putting it on Product A’s bill of material with a quantity per of 0.

In some cases all raw material is tested to the higher spec and the lower spec material is a by-product of testing for the higher spec. In this case the lower spec material can be shown as a phantom with the higher spec as a component. Product A will consume low spec material first and any shortfall call for the higher spec.

If, on the other hand, the company could test all ingredients to the lower spec and only tested to the higher spec as required , they could make the lower spec ingredient a component of the higher spec ingredient which is made a phantom. Requirements for the higher spec ingredient not met by stock will create work orders to test to the higher spec.

Jargon Warning - If you are not familiar with any of the terms used above, you can look them up in the free Jargon Buster on this site or, for more details, purchase the book "Business Excellence". Business Excellence is available in e-book format in addition to the paperback and is a component of the ERP Class "A" toolkit which you can also purchase and download from this site. Click here for more details.