Increase lenght of Item No. Field

We are currently using NAV 5.0. When we purchased the program we were told the Item No. field could be any length we needed. It is currently the standard of 20 characters. We are a distributor and use our vendor numbers for our part numbers. We have various parts that are over 20 characters. As we look to grow our business we will have even more. I have talked to our support and they do not reccomend changing length of item No. due to all the necessary changes that will need to be made. Any suggestions on how to get around this?

I suggest you don’t use your vendor numbers as your numbers.

There is a seperate field for Vendor Item No.

You can ask your partner about increasing the length of that field if needed.

I’m alwalys against having super long item numbers. Make order entry difficult.
We keep our item numbers simple. There are plenty of other fields that you can use to describe the item other than using the item no. Even creating a custom new field to hold the vendors long number is better than increasing the “No.” field.

It’s used everywhere so it would need to be changed everywhere. & re-done with every upgrade.

WHO did say that?? Seemingly salesmen… [:@]

Theoretically it is so, but practically it is a HUGE modification throughout the system, because numerous tables, variable definitions etc etc must be changed, plus, such system will be very difficult --read, more EXPENSIVE-- to upgrade later to new versions.

Nevertheless, there are several ways to solve the case without modifying the system.

There is Vendor Item No field in ItemCard - by standart 20char, but this CAN be extended without the abovementioned consequences easily. However, this approach is not the best one for limited usability later when creating docs.

What you should look for, is Item Cross References functionality. This allows you to add even several different Vendors` part numbers to the same Item, add more than one barcode and so on.Those ALL can be typed/scanned directly into, say, Purchase Invoice, system will find the corresponding ItemNo. This doesn’t work with VendorItemNo, so using CrossRefs gives more flexibility and ease of data entry.

Ask your Partner to explain you Cross Reference functionality in detail, there are many options to choose.

I did think about Cross-reference but we are already using it.

I was not aware of the Vendor Item No. What is involved in increasing this field. Since I am an end user I do not have a developers license. However I am capable of adding fields to tables, making changes to reports and forms and other maintenance. Is this something I could do or is there code that would need to be changed in order to increase this field?

VendorItemNo is more for reference only - you can’t enter it in SO/PO and use instead if ItemNo, so there will be not much added value of filling in this field.

updated: If following the scenario with changing AltSearchField property for ItemNo, suggested later here by Harry (Savatage), it makes sense to use VendItemNo - with such approach you don’t loose the existing functionality of CrossRefs, AND can easily use VendItemNo for input in docs.
I didn’t realize such solution when writing the initial answer, so it was misleading [:$]

If you already use CrossRefNos, then where is the problem? Yes, it’s 20Char by standart, but extending this one is less work, although not that simple as changing it only in CrossRef table, SO/PO and some other forms must be modified accordingly, too.
You yourself will not be able to make this mod (you can’t determine ALL the places where changes must be applied, and you do not have access to all of involved objects even with such licence as you described you have), but your Partner can.

I disagree about the Value. We find it very valuable. We added it to all our PO reports, so each printed line has our number & there number. This way both parties know what’s being ordered (they see their # we se our#).

And If your not using the AltSearchField property of the “No.” in the item table…you could enter Vendor Item No. into that property so the vendor item no & item no both work on SO & PO.

I still think item#'s shouldn’t be over 20chars but that’s an argument for another day.
Here’s a perfect example we have an item
The vendors # is: JOTIGBHFMMSWW265 (they basically cram Tigi Bed Head For Men Matte Separation Workable Wax 2.65oz into an annoying item #)
Our # is : 13982

I bet our order entry team is much happier than theirs [;)]

I am thinking the VendorItemNo is the way to go. However, we have lots of clean up to do. I found out the vendors that have very long part numbers also have internal short numeric numbers which we can now use. So, I would have to move current part numbers into the VendorItemNo and rename the part. I assume a Dataport may be created to update the info. I am not familiar with the AltSearchField. Can someone explain that to me?

The AltSearchField is another way of finding something. For example - when entering an order you can type in the customer no. or if you type in the name the correct # appears. that’s beacuse the altsearchfield property of the customer nummber is “Search Name”. so you can enter either one.

In fact we have changed out AltSearchField of the item no to UPC code. so now we can either enter the item no or the upc code and the correct item will be found. Great for barcode scanning.

Maybe read my blog about this topic

I do recommend to implement another ‘ItemNo2’. Make references, run batch reports to fill up this new field and you can use these two fields together to identify your Item. In normal case, you do not have to do anything with the existed functionality (because standards), and later, you can develop every further issues by this new rule.