SEQ Substitution

When dealing with configured products, often times there is a need for each unique configuration to have a distinct part number. This is not a problem as each product attribute can be joined together to build a part number. However, part numbers, when generated from a fully configured product, can become quite lengthy and are sometimes limited in length by the underlining business systems (ERP, etc.). Because of this, there is a need to serialize part numbers where a portion, or an entire part number, is serialized. Intelligent Serialization implies that a part number can be serialized while at the same time preserving the part number intelligence; hence the same configuration would always yield the same serial number.
A simple example of this would be if we have four attributes with three values each, such as: Color (Blue, Red, Green), Material (Wood, Aluminum, Steel), Voltage (120, 480, 600) and Size (Small, Medium, Large). If it is needed to uniquely capture these selections in the part number, then characters to represent these values. Under this scenario a part number could look something like someprefix-BW1M for a Medium sized Blue widget, made out of Wood that works with 120 Volts. However, if restricted to only two characters in the part number to represent these 4 attributes, an intelligent Sequence Substitution would be defined, where any combination of these four attributes would be replaced with a sequence. The sequence would be defined to range from 1 to 81 (34) and an attributes mentioned above.
To define a Sequence Substitution, first define a numeric sequence; in this example it would be from 1 to 81. Next click on the SEQ Substitution link under the Products admin menu. This will bring up the page shown in Figure A.

Figure A - Sequence Substitution List


Here Sequence Substitutions can be edited, deleted, or copied by selecting the appropriate symbol to the left of the Substitution name. Click Add New to create a new sequence substitution. This brings up the screen shown in Figure B. This is the same screen displayed if editing.

Figure B - Add New Sequence Substitution


Name – This is the name that will be called by the CXSUB function
Description – Enter a description that is more detailed than the name
Sequence – Select the sequence that will be used in the reference
Attributes – Select the Attributes that when selected should be referenced by the same number.
Once a sequence substitution is defined it can be used in a formula for building a part number using a special tag called <*CXSUB(sequence substitution name) *>. Figure C shows a product using sequence substitution. In this example, SEQsub is the created sequence substitution. To the user, the product number will look like any other product number or serial code.

Figure C - Using Sequence Substitution Used by a Product


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