Frequently Asked Questions

Demand Forecasting

  • Will Demand Forecasting work for all of my products?

    We offer basic models that can predict common demand patterns. Your business model and marketing strategy might lead to different demand patterns.

    To take advantage of machine learning, we suggest having a data mining process to understand the data insights and improve accuracy. 

  • How much historical data do I need for Demand Forecasting to be accurate?

    Demand Forecasting requires at least 6 months of historical data to be accurate.

  • How frequently are forecasts created and what do they look like?

    Forecasting frequency can be configured at the product level to run daily, weekly, or monthly as required by your business needs.

    Here is an example of a forecasting graph to show you what Demand Forecasting looks like at the product variant level:

  • Do forecasts focus on single products and product variants?

    The default is to run forecasts on the product variant level but this can be configured to the product level.

  • Does Demand Forecasting work inside of Odoo?

    Yes. All of your forecasts can be viewed inside your instance of Odoo in the Forecasting App that comes with Smart Inventory.

Inventory Insights

  • What metrics are visible in Inventory Insights?

    Inventory Insights shows many key metrics beyond Odoo’s inventory application including:

    • Understock risk

    • Overstock and excess value

    • Products near their reorder point

    • Products at proper stock level

    • Potential stock loss

    • Total inventory value

    • Return statistics

    • High-performance items

    • Overall stock health


  • Are Inventory Insights generated in real time?

    Inventory Insights can be accessed from an easy-to-navigate dashboard in the Inventory application at any time. Key metrics are updated routinely throughout the day providing accurate insights during business operation without having to wait for a certain period — such as your business day — to end in order to generate and access reports.

  • How are Inventory Insights viewed?

    Inventory Insights can be viewed in an easy-to-navigate visual dashboard providing an overview of key metrics with the ability to view deeper information as necessary.

  • Does the system monitor continuously and generate alerts?

    Yes, the system continually monitors your inventory operations throughout the day and allows you to generate real time alerts so you can make adjustments as needed. 

  • How does the stock report categorize my inventory?

    Stock Report automatically categorizes your inventory into three key groups:

    • Enough: You have enough inventory on hand

    • Order: You need to order inventory to maintain optimal levels

    • Urgent: Inventory levels urgently need to be replenished

    This allows you to make decisions regarding your purchasing and sales efforts based on real time insights into your inventory levels.

Purchase Planning

  • Is Demand Forecasting linked to Purchase Planning?

    Yes, forecasts from Demand Forecasting are one of the parameters considered when automatically generating purchase plans. This applies a layer of intelligence to the recommendations with consideration for upcoming demand based on historical data and projected consumer behavior.

  • Is Purchase Planning automated?

    Yes, draft purchase plans are automatically generated for you based on a combination of system recommendations and parameters that you define for your business. While these plans are automatically generated, manual approval is still required to process the purchase order ensuring that no purchases are made without knowledge or approval by stakeholders.

  • How does Purchase Planning generate recommendations?

    Purchase Planning generates recommendations based on several key parameters: 

    • Cost analysis

    • Available vendor discounts or incentives

    • Vendor lead times

    • Time implications

    These parameters and more are utilized to automatically generate recommendations that optimize for cost and time.

  • Can I use Purchase Planning with existing or legacy purchase plan workflows?

    Yes, Purchase Planning allows you to easily import and export to Excel for portability and accessibility of your purchasing workflows. This allows you to integrate with existing manual workflows if necessary for your business needs.

  • What if I want to make changes to a purchase plan or stop an automated plan?

    While Purchase Planning utilizes powerful automation to save time and energy resources, you are able to make changes, pause, or stop the workflow as necessary.


Intelligent Replenishment

  • Is Demand Forecasting linked to Intelligent Replenishment?

    Demand Forecasting is one of many important parameters utilized by Intelligent Replenishment to define and maintain optimal inventory levels to prevent over and understock situations from occurring. Intelligent forecasting utilizes historical data as well as future trend analysis to ensure you have the right stock levels to meet your expected demand.

  • What is the difference between Odoo's standard reordering points and reordering points in Intelligent Replenishment?

    While Odoo allows you to set reordering points for continual purchasing, Intelligent Replenishment adds a layer of intelligence to the workflow. This helps the system account for anticipated changes in demand, supply chain implications, and vendor performance to prevent costly over and understock situations as opposed to relying upon static rules.

    Intelligent Replenishment automatically optimizes reorder points or generates new reordering rules as market demand changes. This will also provide you with the option to generate purchase or manufacturing orders when reordering rules are triggered.

  • How does Intelligent Replenishment define reorder points?

    Intelligent Replenishment defines optimal inventory levels based on demand forecasts, service levels, supplier lead time, inventory cost and more. You are also able to make adjustments to the definition of your reorder points based on additional business parameters. As a result, the risk of over and under stock situations is automatically reduced.

  • Are Intelligent Replenishment thresholds set for individual products or in batches?

    Reordering thresholds can be configured at the individual product level or in product batches depending on the level of granularity your business requires to stay on top of demand.

  • What if I want to make changes to reordering rules or stop an automated rule?

    While Intelligent Replenishment utilizes powerful automation to save time and energy resources, you are able to make changes, pause, or stop the workflow as necessary.

General Questions

  • Can I use individual parts of Smart Inventory as standalone applications?

    No, the various modules within our Smart Inventory suite are not optimized to function as standalone products due to their integration requirements.

  • Does Smart Inventory run inside my Odoo instance?

    Yes, Smart Inventory runs inside and can be accessed within your Odoo instance in applications such as Forecasting or on top of existing Odoo applications such as Inventory. It is not an external application.

  • Do I need to set up Smart Inventory myself?

    No, Novobi’s implementation team will work with you to ensure your instance of Smart Inventory is properly initialized for your unique business needs. This ensures optimal performance of the system.