Imagine a very large company which sold several highly popular products. During the course of a given day, the same product may be ordered hundreds or thousands of times by different customers. If with each order, a warehouse employee went to the shelf to look for the product, the same employee could be making hundreds or thousands of identical roundtrips to fetch the same item. This is of course extremely inefficient.
The picklist is designed to solve this problem by grouping items to be shipped from multiple orders together, so that on one trip, a warehouse employee could retrieve the same item multiple times for multiple orders. A picklist is a report which shows a list items to be retrieved or “picked” from a warehouse for outgoing shipments. They are ordered by the location of the items in the warehouse, so that a “picker” would be able to go through the warehouse and retrieve the items in the same sequence as the pick list. The idea is that you pick orders, then pack them, and then they become shipments.
How Picklists Work
When you create a pick list, the system will go through all the open outstanding orders which can be shipped, exclude any order items which have already been picked, and group the remaining items together. It would then create a bin for each order. Next, if you have locations defined for your warehouse, it would check whether the products you need are in pick/primary locations in a warehouse or in the bulk storage area. If the item is in a picking or primary location, it would record the products which need to go into each bin. If the item is in a bulk location, the system will create a Stock Move to transfer the item from bulk to the picking areas of the warehouse. After a pick list has been created, you can merge bins or transfer them to another pick list. Then, you can print a pick pack report for your pick list, which would group all the items to be picked first and order them by the items' locations in the warehouse, if those are configured, and then show the items in each bin of your pick list. When you are done picking a pick list, you can set it to closed.
Configuring Warehouse Locations
If you wish to have the system order your picklists based on the location of items in the warehouse, you need to create locations for your warehouse first. You can fill in the codes for area, aisle, section, level, and position which denote the particular location in the warehouse. A sequenceId which will be used later to determine the order of picking will be generated based on these codes. The type of a location can be “Bulk” or “Pick/Primary”. Inventory in “Pick/Primary” locations will be put on picking lists. Inventory stored in bulk items must be transferred first in a Stock Move.
Below the location is a menu for associating products in each location. “Minimum” is the minimum quantity at a location before a move is triggered, and “move” is the quantity moved each time. Note that this is the same as the [Catalog] > [Product] >> [Locations] screen in the catalog manager.