Browse Prior Art Database

Algorithm to Determine the Correct Supplier for All Parts on a Bill of Materials Disclosure Number: IPCOM000168202D
Original Publication Date: 2008-Feb-29
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2008-Feb-29
Document File: 3 page(s) / 31K

Publishing Venue



This invention comprises a program to determine the correct supplier for all parts on a Bill of Material. This is useful in data conversion from one system to another.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 57% of the total text.

Page 1 of 3

Algorithm to Determine the Correct Supplier for All Parts on a Bill of Materials

A customer was converting from an IBM® Lotus Notes® based system Bill of Materials Review System (BRS) to Common Review System (CRS), a web based system. Each Bill of Materials (BOM) in the old system has a header record and one or more child records, and these records all have a Part Number (P/N) field. Figure 1 shows an example of what was happening:

Figure 1


P/N 0000000001 Supplier ABC P/N 0000000001 Supplier GHI P/N 0000000002 Supplier DEF P/N 0000000002 Supplier JKL

Notice that different BOM's can have the same part number but a different supplier. The issue was when the data is converted from BRS to CRS, how do we know which Supplier information is correct for each P/N? In addition, each occurrence of a P/N should always have the same Supplier information when the data conversion takes place.

The data feeding BRS came from a system called BOMAssist which reads data from an IBM® DB2® table called the Datamart. The reason a part number in one BOM can have a different supplier than in another BOM is because the supplier data in the Datamart can be different at different times.

A unique aspect of this solution is the way an IBM® LotusScript® agent was used to first access a DB2 database for the supplier information for a part number. Note a part number can have one or more suppliers. If the supplier information was not found in the Datamart, then the Lotus Notes Database would be searched for each record that has the part number in question. We save a pointer to the P/N with the latest date and see if this Notes document has supplier information. If so, this information is used and if not, we use a default Supplier.

All the information from BRS is written to various files and then loaded into the CRS table. A sample workflow is shown in Figure 2:

Figure 2


Page 2 of 3

F o r e a c h P a rt N u m b e r (P /N )

Is P /N s to re d in D atam art

N o


G et each N otes docum ent w ith that P /N and hold a pointer to the one w ith the lates...