Coming Friday, it is time for another important Brexit moment. At least, this seems to be the case. Last week, the House of Commons voted four times no, which resulted in another period of insecurity. While we are this close to the deadline. For clarification, options for a customs union, a Norwegian model and a new referendum were rejected. Besides, the option to prevent a no-deal Brexit is also off the table. So again, we can only guess what is going to happen.

An unforeseen result of the Brexit could be that (a part of) your shipments to the United Kingdom can temporarily not pass. It is therefore plausible that, as a result of delay in the docks or at the inspection station, your customer will return your goods to your warehouse. Or maybe he will just wait and see what is going to happen, and does not ship in the meantime. Meanwhile, your warehouse is becoming full and the occupancy rate reaches a maximum. So, if you are in the most extreme case forced to move to an external location, this is quite easy to realize in 3PL Dynamics. I will explain to you in this blog how you can create a new external location to your existing location structure.

How does the location structure work in 3PL Dynamics?

The structure of locations in your WMS follows the setup of your warehouse: Company/Site, Halls, Hallways, Houses, Beams/Heights, Pallet locations. This can also be less complicated, for example by directly placing the pallet locations under your site.

Each level in this structure is a main location for the layer below. And each main location has the option to add up the stock and space in the layer below. The lowest level is the actual location of your stock.

Creating an external location in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central

Luckily, adding an external location in 3PL Dynamics is just as easy as adding own locations. Firstly, select in your current location overview the correct main location (e.g. your Company) and use the button ‘Create sub location’ to create a new storage location. This is how quickly a setup of an external location can go! But still, practicing beforehand in the Test environment is a smart thing to do.

Below the following image, I will explain to you which choices you have when creating an external location. These choices determine whether it goes as quickly in your case as just described.

Difference between your own locations and the external location

The location structure of your own warehouse gives insight in how your stock is divided over your warehouse. Of course, you want to know in detail where the goods are stored.
In the external warehouse, it is likely that a third party takes responsibility over the inventory management. In that case, the location structure can be significantly less extensive: your information only shows which goods is stored at that location. More in-depth details about which pallet is stored where lie with the third party.
Make sure that you think about the detailed registration of goods in and out. For example, will you physically receive and scan the goods at your site? And will you then transfer the delivered goods to the external location – administratively or by scanning? Or does the reception take place at the other location and do you only process this in your administration?

This way, you can choose to receive a message when goods get moved out. If you decide how you will work, this will save you lots of time and discussions during the setup of an external location in your WMS.

What to do with complex situations?

In some cases, the warehouse process is not as easy as goods coming in, scanning and moving them. Of course, you can expect more complex situations. Therefore I will ask some questions to point out several points of attention.

  • Do you want to implement scanning at the external location? If so, is this all set regarding hardware (scanners) and connections (such as WiFi, VPN, server access, HTML5 and Telnet)?
  • Who is going to work at the external location? Is that your own staff or a third-party workforce? Do they need training of any kind?
  • Would you like to receive goods externally? Or will you do this in your own warehouse and will you only move the goods in your administration?
  • What about goods out? Or will you firstly commute the pallets?
  • How will you deal with orderpick assignments?

A lot to think about in such a short amount of time

As said before, we can only guess what is going to happen with the Brexit. Maybe you do not need to create an external location. Possibly, the United Kingdom will remain in the EU. On the other hand there might be a strict border active after the April 12th. Anyhow, coming Friday will offer more clarity. And you found a way to survive the first possible obstacle. Do you expect a more complex scenario, or do you recognize yourself in the aforementioned questions? Please feel free to contact our Customer Success Consultants, so your services can go as smoothly as before. Also, keep an eye out for our blogs, in which we will discuss relevant Brexit subjects. And lastly, if you have any questions or tips, these are more than welcome.