Can an item number be changed into a different item number without losing any of the history associated with it?
Yes, this is definitely possible. It is done using the Item Number Change utility. This is a product that ships free with Sage 300, but must be activated in the database in order to be used. Go to Administrative Services / Data Activation and select the option for Item Number Change and Proceed. When this function is active it will be found under Inventory Control.
User security must be setup for this module as with any other module, under Administrative Services. Setup Security Groups and then assign the groups to users in User Authorizations.
Open Item Number Change and click on New. This opens the screen which identifies the detail of the old and new item numbers and the process desired. There are three main functions that Item Number Change can do.
- Change - replaces the old item number with a new item number and the old item number is deleted. The new item number should not exist yet, this process will create it.
- Combine - combines two or more existing items into a single item number. The source item number(s) is/are deleted
- Copy - creates a new item based on an existing item. Basic information from an existing item's master file is copied into a new item. The original item is left unchanged.
Once the change has been entered, it appears on the main screen and additional changes can be added to the change list. After all changes have been entered and saved in the Change List, backup the data. (Recommended backup process is the dbdump. Click here for assistance with this function Backup using DBDump). It is extremely important to have a backup done just prior to posting the changes. If the change process is interrupted or fails for any reason, the data will need to be restored to the pre-change state.
After the backup, the changes can be posted. This can only be done when no other users are in the database. During the process, a progress bar is seen on the screen. The utility goes through each data table where the item number is in use, and makes the requested changes in each data table. This ensures that any transactions, documents and history from one item will be transferred to the new item (or the combined item). During a copy procedure, no documents are affected. When the process is complete, a message "Changes successfully posted." will be seen on the screen. For larger databases, this function can take a long time, and it is recommended that the posting be done on a fast workstation, or better yet, directly on the server itself.
Note - if a large number of items require changing, it is possible to import these changes from an excel file, rather than adding them one at a time. This article describes the format required for that import: Importing Changes into Item Number Change. The change list can also be populated quickly by using the 'Change by Example' function. Click on the icon circled in red from the main screen, or click on Edit / Change by Example:
The new screen that pops up allows the user to specify a segment value (or part of a segment value) that should be changed for a range of items. This is effective if the structure or segments are being changed in a consistent manner for many items. Click on Match, and all items will be reviewed for the changes selected and the list populated in the detail grid. If the results are satisfactory, click on Done to transfer these changes to the Change List.
Another additional functions of Item Number Change is to change the length of individual segments in the item structure. In the screenshot above, click on the icon circled in blue, or click on Tools / Item Structure Change. A new screen will popup. Specify which segment should be changed, and the new desired length. Additional fields will then appear asking if the addition of or removal of characters should be taken from the left or the right of the existing values.
**The most important thing to remember is to have a backup prior to posting any changes through Item Number Change.