6 Replies Latest reply on Apr 23, 2009 7:07 AM by Duke3x

    Inventory control with scanner



      Inventory control with scanner


      Hello everyone.  I am very new to FileMaker Pro and I have a question for a project I am working on.  I own a dental office and would like to organize my inventory.  We use a lot of different materials that if not controlled, can lead to a waste of money.  Also, I would like to streamline the ordering process.  Here are my thoughts:

      I would like to assign a barcode to every item we use.  This could be on a paper with the items picture beside it.

      As the items are received from our supplier, we could scan them into the database.  The scanner would add "1" to our inventory for each scan.

      Each time we take the item from our supply cupboard, we could scan it and it would decrease the inventory by "1".

      At a predefined re-order number, a script could be launched to automatically send an email/fax to re-order the material.


      How easy or hard is this to do?  I have no programming experience.  I would appreciate any guidance.

      Thank you all in advance,


        • 1. Re: Inventory control with scanner

          The "wheel" for this has most likely already been written.  You could use either a "canned" inventory management program or a point-of-sale system.  Most POS systems have the reorder function already built in.  Thousands of small retailers use these "canned" programs.  Sounds like you have a pretty simple problem.  Take whatever solution is easiest and cheapest.  It may or may not be in filmmaker.



          • 2. Re: Inventory control with scanner
               Thanks Magi, but I enjoy re-inventing the wheel.  I've looked at the systems you mentioned.  They provide way more than I need and are too expensive.  I'm not selling anything or have customers to manage...just want to manage a small inventory.  I know it can be done with FileMaker (it even has a template for it), I just don't know how to make it work with a scanner. 
            • 3. Re: Inventory control with scanner

              If it's only the 'scanner' bit you're concerned about, don't worry: a scanner is just another keyboard as far as Filemaker is concerned.  Make all your scripts, calculations, updates, etc, work when you type into fields manually.  Then connect the scanner, and when it is in the field you formerly typed in, scan the item.  Everything will work just the same as it did when you typed.



              • 4. Re: Inventory control with scanner

                Did this really worked? Did you finished your project? Share some experience

                • 5. Re: Inventory control with scanner

                  I set up a DB with a bar code scanner years ago. It's quite simple. Note that with most scanners, you can program them to add additional characters to the end of the data scanned from the label. If you program it to add a tab or enter character, FMP will respond to that character exactly as though you pressed that key on the keyboard.


                  I imagine that you could do some nice things with that feature and FMP 10's script triggers.

                  • 6. Re: Inventory control with scanner

                    Sweat, thanks so much for sharing that , now i guess i will have to work on a new project. If somebody has any sample, i will appreciate it.