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About Smart Part Numbers

Smart part numbers can be used to generate part numbers for the following types products in quotes, orders, agreements, and for products added to shopping carts:

  • Simple products
  • Bundles
  • Customizable products

Smart part numbers allow you to automatically generate part numbers for different combinations of product attributes. You do not have to make an entry in the product table and provide a part number for each combination of product attributes that a customer can purchase.

For example, you sell shirts in three sizes: small, medium, and large. You also sell them in three colors: red, green, and blue. There are nine possible combinations of size and color that customers can purchase. Each combination needs a part number that can be passed to a back-end system at the time of purchase.

One way to set this up is to make an entry in the product table for each combination. In other words, you create nine separate products. This is time consuming and does not take advantage of the attribute features in the class system. It also does not take advantage of the attribute-based pricing features in Siebel ePricer.

Another way to set this up is to make one entry in the product table for the shirt. You then define color and size attributes on the class to which the shirt belongs. Finally, you use smart part number to define which part number to assign to each combination of attributes. For example, when the customer selects the shirt in size small and color blue, smart part number generates a part number for this combination and displays it in the quote. You can also use attribute-based pricing in ePricer to determine the price of the shirt.

There are several advantages to this method:

  • It makes managing the product table easier. You make one entry for a product and then use the class system to define and manage its attributes. If you enter a product's attribute combinations as products in the product table, you must manually edit the table when attributes change.
  • It makes managing part numbers easier and more accurate. You can make one entry for a part number definition and it will be applied to all the forms of the product consistently and accurately.
  • It allows you to take advantage of important features in related products such as attribute-based pricing in Siebel ePricer.

Smart part number provides the following methods for defining how part numbers are generated:

Dynamic. You specify what product attributes participate in creating a part number and the string that each attribute value will have. You then define a part number template with placeholders for the attribute values. Smart part number inserts the value of the attribute into the part number template to create the final part number. Use this method when your part numbers include important information, besides attribute values, that is needed to uniquely identify the product.

Predefined. You specify what product attributes participate in creating a part number. You can then do one of two things:

  • You can auto-generate a matrix of all the combinations of these attributes. Random part numbers are provided for each combination. You can accept the random values or replace them with your own values.
  • You can manually create the matrix, inserting your own part numbers.

When the user selects product attributes, smart part number searches the list for the correct attribute combination and uses its part number. Use this method when your part numbers cannot be easily created using string substitution.

You define named smart part number methods on product classes. These methods use the attributes defined on the class to generate a part number. Only attributes with a list of values (LOV) domain can be used to generate part numbers. When you assign a product to a class, you can select for it any of the smart part number methods that have been defined on the class.

If you add or remove attributes on a class, or change the values for an attribute, these changes are not automatically propagated to the smart part number methods defined on the class. You must manually update each smart part number method with the changes.

Product Administration Guide