Need advice on special order best practices
We have a retail hobby shop and do a pile of special orders every week (sometimes 100+) ... we have been managing special orders outside of the system using paper or more recently by using workorders and creating Misc. items for the special order items. We have avoided the special order system because adding all of those items to inventory and managing them seemed like a pile of work for what are usually one offs.... now I am having second thoughts BUT looking for best practices from other users before jumping into the deep end:
- Do you allow your general staff to create / enter special orders?
- Who sets up the new inventory items in LS for specials?
- Who costs and prices the items for special orders; do you allow your staff to do this on the fly at the sales counter or does it have to go to you or someone else for costing or approval?... if it goes to someone else for costing what is your process?
- When you add a special order item, do you do a full item set up including category, brand, vendor, vendor ID, etc. and if so do you have a separate category or tag for these items to assist in managing them during and after sale?
- Do you immediately archive special order items after the order is fulfilled?
- I have the opportunity to import my two main vendors entire catalogues to LS.... would this be a good idea to get 90% of the items into LS and set up correctly up front and then just set them all to "archive" and or tag them as "nonstock" to keep reports cleaner? Pros and cons?
- Our industry deals with a lot of preorder and backorder situations.... This means that on a typical shipment we could have up to 15 or more PO's referenced on one shipment from backorders finally arriving.... seems like a lot of work to receipt all of those PO's separately one by one (right now we just use PO's as a way to induct weekly shipments and dont enter backorders until they actually arrive)
This is a big change for us and based on our special order volumes and backorders may not be worth it for the extra work... but... I am excited about the more detailed reporting potential and increased accuracy for sales by category and brand. Opinions? What am I missing??
thanks in advance for your responses!!