How to use item substitution on a PO????

Hi all! I would like to be able to use the actual substitution function in the PO, but how can I do that? This is my scenario: I create a PO and I insert item XYZ ( which has some subsitutes in the system such as Item 123, they are also interchangeable). At that time, I want to be able to check the availability of item 123 if Item XYZ is not available. The system should check automatically availability of item 123 and gives me that item instead of XYZ , how the system can do that with little customisations?? Thanks.

Why would you want to substitute on a Purchase Order? If you want item XYZ, then the system shouldn’t switch to 123. If the vendor is out of XYZ and offers 123 then you would need to switch the PO anyways.

hi chris1 thanks for your reply. In fact, my client would like to be able to purchase Item 123 if there is no inventory for item XYZ. Also when running the requisition worksheet, the system should not propose to purchase item XYZ if there are some units of item 123 available in the stock. On the PO, because item XYZ and Item 123 acts the same way, we the system to take Item 123 ( and purchase that item) instead of Item XYZ if there is no in stock. I hope that it’s a little bit clear. Thanks

Is there any difference between Item XYZ and Item 123 which can then justify splitting them? Why not just have them together as only 1 item?

Hi Tatiana The subsutitution funcitonality is designed to work mainly with sales, a customer orders 10 off of an item and you do not have 10 then the system will suggest the substitution. The purchasing and reordering side are not concerned with substitutions, the logic being you order what you need, and each item (if they warrant independence as Nelson states) has a set reordering policy (internally and externally to Navision). What you are suggesting is altering the requisition calcualtions based upon substitutions, and I would guess that this would be no “little customisation”. In your example depending upon the reordering policies you could never have XYZ in stock, the system would sell XYZ, suggest 123, reorder 123, leave XYZ in stock, which someone then wants to buy but you sell 123 and on and on and on!

As an NSC, before looking at coding, yur first offer of a solution to the client should be to try and work a solution with the existing system. The requiremnt here tends to indicate that they are asking you to modify Navision to the way of their old system. I believe it has happened once or twice before though [:D]. Basically if your client have itme 123 on stock and are about to purchase item XYZ, then I can’t see any connection. If they are the same ite, then use Nelsons idea. If they are differnet items, then you need to plan for each. In terms of sales, substitutions are a common thing, for example, item XYZ may sell for $10 and item 124 for $12, it may be that if I need item xyz, I can use 123, at a higher cost, but it will do the job, but not the other way around. In purchasing, you need to buy what you need to buy, or else your planning was wrong from the start. If your client has been purchasing wrongly for a long time, then maybe you can help them to do it right in the future. That is after all what they are paying you for.

ok Guys! Thanks for all your ideas.


I also have the same requirement for having alternate items on Purchase module. This is mainly for spare parts items for garage management. A spare part will be ordered with a vendor and due to non-availability of that item, a substitute will be provided. A substitute item can be from other brand with different cost but still reliable to use to the service.

Has anyone handled this situation before? This is very common on automotive spare parts where different brands (of same specification) can be procured.