How to Set Up Lead Times
Manage your lead times for Products, Purchasing, Manufacturing and Sales
Why do You Need Lead Times?
Having a proper schedule is an important part of business. You need to carefully plan every move to provide the best possible service to your customers.
Odoo helps you plan and coordinate various processes within your business.You can schedule dates to control your process: from supplies orders to manufacturing and delivery.
Lead times are a security measure to ensure you don't miss a deadline. You define a number of days that you think are enough to finish a process. Each process can have a different number of lead days.
Luckily you don’t even have to be an expert on how to calculate manufacturing lead time or other lead times.
Odoo calculates the lead times in each process (manufacturing, purchase or shipping) and gives you a date. That date is called a Commitment Date - this is the day you can say to your customers they'll get their products.
With Odoo you can schedule with accuracy automatically. You can give your customers an accurate estimation of when they’ll receive their products with the help of lead times. The dates take into account lead times from your suppliers, manufacturing, and delivery.
This process is not time-consuming, because you only have to set up lead times once to properly plan deliveries.
How are Lead Times Calculated?
Below is a table that summarizes how lead times are calculated. When seeing the lead time example project management becomes easy, so you’ll soon see the value of these Odoo tools.
Odoo sets as default the date you are creating a sales order or other orders. The lead is the number of days you choose for each process.
We have a more detailed explanation of how lead times work and how to set them up. But first, you have to check if you have the Dates on Sales Order module. If not, go to Apps and install it.
When you create a new order, there’s an Other Information tab on the form. Commitment Date is the date that you tell the customer they’ll receive your products.
This field is automatically set based on whether you have lead times defined or not.
If you don’t have any lead time, the Commitment Date is set on the same day that you confirmed the sale order.
- Requested Date is the date your customer asked to have the product delivered.
- Commitment Date is the day you promised your customer will receive the product.
- Effective Date is the date you confirm the Delivery Order.
If you have lead time defined, the date will be calculated based on the days you have set. So, if you have a customer lead time of 10 days, the commitment date will change from today's date to 10 days from now.
To set a Customer Lead time you have to go to the product form. This lead time will be added to the Commitment Date.
Since every product has different manufacturing processes and completion times and also different customer lead times it is on product’s form that you insert these lead times. In the Inventory tab, you’ll see these settings on the left.
When you create a new sales order, the Commitment Date adds the lead days for the customer you previously defined, to the creation date.
So, let’s say today is April 20th. Product A has 10 days for Customer Lead Time. You create a sales order for product A today. Now, product A's Commitment Date is automatically set to the 30th of April.
What if you have products A and B, with different lead times, to deliver at the same time?
In that case, first, you have to go to the Other Information tab on the sales order. Select the Shipping Policy field and choose the "Deliver all products at once" option.
Add A and B to the product list. A has 10 lead days and B has 7 order time days.
Check the Commitment Date. It’s set according to the product that has more lead time. In our case, product A.
Odoo calculates the Commitment Date, taking into account the product with the most lead days. This will ensure that all your products will be delivered at the same time.
Following the example above, both A and B will be delivered on the 30th.
And if I need to deliver them one by one?
If you want to deliver the products as soon as they’re ready, the Commitment Date will be calculated according to the product that has the least lead days.
The Shipping Policy needs to be set to "Deliver each product when available" option to deliver A and B on separate days.
Because B has the least lead days (7) and will be the first to be delivered, the Commitment Date is calculated according to product B.
So instead of the 30th of April, the Commitment Date will be the 27th.
Be aware that if you change the order lead time later, the system will not update the order. You’ll have to delete the order line and insert it again. This happens when duplicating the order as well.
To manage inventory, do the following in the Inventory app:
- Go to the Settings page
- Locate Security Lead Time for Sales and Security Lead Time for Purchase
- Tick the boxes
- Insert the number of lead days in each option
Don’t forget to save.
These security times will be visible in the Inventory app to process the shipment. Under the Scheduled Date item, the date calculated is the Commitment Date minus the security lead time.
For example, let's say set the Security Lead Time for Sales to 7 days. This will remove 7 days from the Commitment Date - the order scheduled to be delivered on the 20th starts being processed on the 13th.
Note that these settings are applied to the specific company. If you’re working in multi-company mode, it won’t be applied to them all.
When you make a purchase order, the order lead time days will be added to the day you make the order. So, if you have 15 lead days to receive product C and make the purchase order on the 10th of April, the Scheduled Date on the order form will be the 25th.
When working out how to calculate manufacturing lead time, remember that the lead time here works with your calendar. If you don’t produce anything on the weekends, only weekdays will be counted.
In the product form go to the inventory tab. There, set the manufacturing lead time on the field with the same name.
When a sales order is created, a manufacturing order will be made too. On the Deadline Start of the order, the date will be a few days before the Commitment Date. In other words, the lead days will be counted backward from the Commitment Date.
Imagine you have a Commitment Date for May 10th. By choosing 12 days of lead time for manufacturing, the start date of the order will be April 29th.
If you don't work on weekends, the start date will be the 24th.
Lead time can be set for all your products:
- In the Settings page of the Manufacturing app, locate Security Lead Time.
- Tick the box and choose how many days you want. This ensures all your products will start being produced before the commitment date
You can have the Security Lead Time and Manufacturing Lead Time active at the same time. The security lead will be added to the lead time you already have on each product. If they don’t have one, only the security lead time will be taken into account.
We suggest that if you have products that take some time to produce, you may want to add a Customer Lead Time as well. If you have a sales order for a product that has manufacturing lead time, you have to set a Customer Lead Time as well.
Without Customer Lead Time, the Commitment Date is the day you are creating the order. You can't promise to deliver a product today if it takes 12 days to produce.
For example, you create a sales order for product C on the 21st of April. Without a Customer Lead Time, Odoo automatically sets the Commitment Date for the same day.
This will also trigger a manufacturing order. Product C has a manufacturing lead time of 12 days. In the manufacturing order, the Deadline Start is set for the 9th.
You couldn’t have started production 12 days ago as you only confirmed the order today. And you can’t deliver it because it needs to be manufactured first. Because of this, you have to define a Customer Lead Time to prevent this error.
If your company needs a lead time report for sales, purchasing or manufacturing orders, or needs to create more lead times that don’t exist in the system but make sense in your business model, don't hesitate to contact us. We will be glad work on customized options to meet your requirements.
Want a FREE assessment to get started?