Serial Number Tracking

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Christian Howard

Howard and Sons Pyrotechnics
Founded 1922
Finale customer since 2011


Serial Number Tracking

Finale Inventory allows you to create and track your products via serial numbers. Finale ensures clear traceability of your products and makes it easy to track an unlimited amount of serial numbers when you receive products into your inventory to the time you actually sell the particular product. Our integrated turnkey mobile barcode solution eliminates error and speeds up operations with advanced features like automatic barcode learning and product lookup tables. Picking products with serial numbers is a snap with Finale and a mobile barcode scanner.

The inventory complexity compounds when you need to keep tracks of serial numbers. Finale makes it easy to keep track per-stock-unit information from the start (receiving or manufacturing) to finish (shipping the products). This information is permanently recorded in the system, allowing the company access the archives later.

If you are in a business where mandates require you to maintain accurate records for each unique serial numbers purchase and sale (i.e. medical supplies, fireworks, chemical supplies, pharmaceuticals, etc.), then Finale Inventory is all you need for regulatory compliance documentation. Finale Inventory generates a comprehensive audit trail of stock changes and will accurately track each individual item sold, received or returned.

Flexibility with Serial Numbers

Serial numbers are used in a variety of ways, and Finale Inventory is designed to be very flexible and will accommodate a wide range of lot id numbering schemes.

For example, when a product is received with a supplier's lot id number already on it, the serial number can be used in one of three ways: it can be assigned as the external lot id number, it can be used as the internal serial number, or a completely new lot id number can be created.

If a supplier does not provide a serial number, then the user needs to assign one internally. The internal lot number can be assigned through auto-generation or by a user-assigned numbering system. Another common user-assigned practice is using expiry dates for serial numbers so the first items can be picked from your available stock first (FIFO).

The choice is yours; Finale supports either scenario.

Straight-forward serial number implementation

Assigning serial numbers to the products is typically completed when the products are received into the warehouse. Finale makes it easy to assign lots id by offering several options for lots id information to be entered the system.

  1. Manual Entry. When inbound products are received, simply enter the serial number and assign it to the product.
  2. Bulk Import. If you have many serial numbers for assignment, import the data by copying and pasting from Excel.
  3. Mobile Barcode Scanner. The turnkey mobile barcode scanner solution will improve your processing time of inbound shipments while eliminating data entry errors. This is the recommended method if the products have a barcode of the serial number printed on the product or package.

If the serial numbers are contained in the barcode on the product, simply scan the barcode. When the serial number barcodes are not given, create and print out barcode labels beforehand. Simply place the labels onto the box and scan the product when the product is received.

Check out the video to see a demonstration of the integrated barcode scanning solution. Additional information on the barcode scanning capability can be found here.

Complete Traceability

Once a product is assigned a serial number, it can be monitored as it moves through your inventory system. A printed or displayed report allows you to search by part number or serial number.

The lot id will be provided on the sales order shipment and manifest for tracking documentation for the customers.

What is the difference between Lot IDs and Serial Numbers?

Lot tracking is used to track batches, or groups, of a specific item. Lots work very similarly to serialized inventory, except a lot ID represents a group of items instead of an individual unit. A lot ID number is assigned to each batch of items, and the lot ID number stays with the batch as it goes through the system.

Serialized inventory allows you to track individual units of an item, rather than quantities only. A serial number is assigned to each unit, and the number stays with the unit as it goes through the system. Serial numbers typically refer to individual discrete items, such as a bicycle which itself may be constructed from many other serially-numbered components such as gears and wheels.

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