In Business Central, to create a drop shipment, a user must link together a purchase order and a sales order. Whilst this is beneficial for visibility, it can create issues when the goods are only partially shipped. The issue that comes from partial receipts and shipments is that once linked, those order can’t be deleted. They also can’t be changed from a drop shipment to a traditional order, meaning you’re stuck with it cluttering up your purchase and sales order lists. Today we are going to demonstrate how to handle partially receipted/shipped drop shipments using data migration.
Before I continue, we will brush over how to perform drop shipments briefly. For those who aren’t aware of how to employ them, please read our guide on drop shipments and special orders.
Demonstrating the issue at hand
To clarify the issue I am describing, I will recreate the scenario in Business Central. In my example, I am going to sell Item: Painting Canvas to my Customer: Pablo Piccasso Industries. I will be purchasing the goods from Vendor: Vincenzo Peruggia’s Art Dealership.
In Business Central, I create a sales order to Pablo Picasso Industries:
As you can see, the Drop Shipment field is ticked. Now I must create a corresponding purchase order. After doing so and creating the link between the two records, I am going to partially post receipt on the Purchase Order. There may be a multitude of reasons why vendors partially ship goods. Regardless of what that may be, envisage the scenario where the supplier can no longer fulfil the order completely. We will return to this idea shortly.
In Business Central I can reflect this situation by amending the Quantity to Receive value on the purchase order line to a number lower than 10. In my case, seven. Obviously, for a drop shipment, I am never physically receiving the goods as they are going straight to the customer. You could equally post a partial shipment on the sales order; due to the link between them, it has the same effect.
We now have a situation where our vendor can no longer fulfil the quantity on the order. My purchase order looks like this:
So what are the problems?
- I can’t delete the order as it’s not full receipted:
- I can’t change the Quantity field to match the Quantity Received value:
If I could, I would be able to fully post the record.
- I can’t use the Undo Receipt action on the posted purchase receipt record as there’s an associated sales order:
Now, whilst having one or two records stuck on your purchase and sales order lists may not be the end of the world, it can add up. Think how common it is for vendors to ship incorrect correct quantities of goods. As you can imagine, these records may begin building up over time, cluttering the system.
Resolving partial receipt issues on drop shipments
Now we understand the issue, let’s look at resolving it using configuration packages. I make two configuration packages. One is for table 37 (Sales Line) and the other is for table 39 (Purchase line). On each of the packages, navigate to the No. of Fields Available. After drilling into that field, click the ‘…’ and ‘Clear Included’ action:
Sales Line package fields
Next, I need to decide which fields to include. For my Sales Line package, I want to include these fields:
Purchase Line package fields
For my Purchase Line package, I want to include these fields:
The reason we don’t want to include more fields is because we want to reduce the chances of accidentally changing unrelated data. We have here all the fields we need.
It’s also worth noting that Validate Field is disabled for all the fields. Validating the first three fields isn’t important, however the bottom three fields in both packages mustn’t be.
Disassociating the sales and purchase order records
After configuring my package, I must make a mental note of the purchase and sales order number I wish to manipulate. Afterwards, export the two packages to Excel. This will export every value for the defined fields of the purchase and sales order records in my system. Now, I only need one line from the package, so I am going to delete all the others. Obviously, if you have multiple partially shipped drop shipments you wish to amend, keep those.
Below is my Purchase Line package:
As you can see, I’ve removed the Sales Order No. value. I have also adjusted the Sales Order Line No. value to ‘0’ and amended the Drop Shipment field value to ‘false’.
Below is my Sales Line package:
After importing, validating and applying both packages, they should both amend one record each:
Now, if I visit the purchase and sales record, I can see that both Drop Shipment fields are unticked. I can now re-open the order and amend the Quantity field to match the Quantity Received. See below:
Reassociating the sales and purchase order records
At this point, as there’s no drop shipment link between the purchase and sales orders, you can simply post the records. However, if you wish to recreate the link between them, to make it clear a drop shipment did indeed occur, you can. To do so, after amending the Quantity value, I need to perform some more data migration.
To do so, I can simply amend the configuration package files I created earlier and re-import them. What I am looking to do is create the link between the two orders. To do so, I must re-input the corresponding order numbers on the packages. See below:
After making the changes, I import, validate and apply the packages. My orders are linked again and I can fully post both of them now:
To check the orders are linked, I can click ‘Order’ in the Lines section, ‘Drop Shipment’ and either ‘Purchase Order’, from the sales order record, or ‘Sales Order’ from the purchase order. This will take you to the associated drop shipment record.
Whilst this isn’t as efficient for users as it would ideally be, it does enable users to overcome obstacles presented by partially receipted drop shipments in Business Central. Another thing to remember is, if this has happened multiple times, you could amend multiple orders in any configuration package.
Thanks for reading! Hopefully this helps you navigate your way through any issues you have relating to partially shipped/receipted drop shipments in Business Central. If you’ve any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us. Lastly, to keep up with when we post, follow us on LinkedIn.