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Enter an Equipment Request

This tutorial reviews the situation where a customer has a specific equipment need or request. For new users, this tutorial is intended to follow the Tutorial: Looking up a Customer

At the end of that tutorial, you will have looked up the customer Acme Tools in Detroit.

This tutorial starts with MLS 2000 running and the customer Acme Tools in a customer window. The "OWNED / QUOTES / WANTED / ARCHIVE" tab should be pressed so that you can see the activity for Acme Tools. If you have just entered the new customer Acme Tools, there shouldn't be any owned equipment, quotes, or wanted requests.

For this example, we will presume that your customer needs a 250 Ton Minster Press SSDC that is late model and in excellent condition for less than $170,000. (Hopefully this is a reasonable request!)

You could lookup matching equipment in your database and send quotes of each match. There is an advantage of entering the wanted request first, before searching your equipment database. Once you have entered the wanted request into MLS 2000, you will be able to see that request, have it documented, and when you have new equipment available you can match it up with outstanding requests. It may take a minute longer to enter the wanted request first, but if you can afford the time it can pay dividends down the road!

Adding a the wanted request:

From the "ACME Tool" window with the "OWNED / QUOTES / WANTED / ARCHIVE" tab selected, there will be a button labeled "Add first wanted". Press that button.

(If there is already a wanted request, the button will say "2 equipment wanted >>". You should press that button. The "Equipment Wanted" window will display a list of previous requests. Press the "New Wanted" button)

  1. The field labeled "Class" is a pull-down control. You can either use the keyboard to enter the first few letters of the class name, use the up and down arrow keys to scroll through the available classes, or you can use the mouse to open up the pull down list and chose one of available classes. Novice users usually find using the mouse the most straighforward method.
  2. You can customize equipment classes with MLS 2000. You may not have an equipment classification called "PRESS". If you have the class "PRESS" select it, otherwise select your comparable class.
  3. Select the "Sub-Class" field and select "SSDC" or other appropriate label. It is Important that you select a classification, but it may not be important to select a sub-classification. Remember if you make a request more specific, the matches will be fewer but better quality. However, if it is too restrictive, you may may not get any matches and overlook items that have been entered incompletely or may be close to what the customer wants but doesn't match exactly.
  4. Select the "UED" code field and select "P7130" (Presses Straight Side Double Crank). Some MLS 2000 customers don't use UED codes, but it only takes a few seconds to select the UED code and it can be useful later.
  5. In the "Description" field enter a something like "Wants late model Minster Press to update shop" for example.
  6. On the "Manufacturer" field select "MINSTER". If it isn't included in the pull-down list, click on the field and type in the name "MINSTER". You will be warned that the manufacturer "MINSTER" is not on file. Click on the "Yes" button to add the new manufacturer.
  7. In the field "Detailed description" you can enter more specifics of what the customer wants. In this case, we don't have any more information to enter. Click on the Price field in the maximum column. Enter 170,000. This was the maximum the customer wanted to spend. (If you want to at least look at slightly more expensive equipment you may want to enter a higher figure.
  8. The eight lines after Price may have search specifications for that classification of equipment, For example, important specifications for Presses are tonnage, stroke, and bed width where important specifications for slitters might be width and thickness. Like the classifications themselves, search specifications may be customized. For more discussion on setting up equipment classifications and search specifications see information on that feature.
  9. If you have a specification for "Tonnage" enter 250 for the minimum tonnage. (i.e. they require at least a 250 ton press)
  10. Press the "Update" button to save this request. You now have a permanent record of the request on file.
  11. Finding equipment for the customer:

  12. To find equipment for this request, press the "Find Match >" button.
  13. The "Find Equipment" window will be displayed, with all of the selections like classification, maximum price, and minimum tonnage pre-selected. The search will be done automatically. Any matches will be displayed in the list at the bottom half of the window.
  14. The search performed will not require that equipment has a matching equipment manufacturer or a matching UED code. In order to consider these, you must select the "By Ref Code / UED / Mfg" tab in the "Find Equipment" window. If you select this tab and press the "Search Now" button ONLY these search specifications will be considered (i.e. the search will not require finding a match that is either a "PRESS" or at least 250 tons.
  15. You may want to adjust the search parameters and search several times if necessary to find equipment in your system suitable for the customer. Remember the boxes labeled "Inventory", "End User", "Dealer", and "Sold". The search will only include equipment in the system which meets these requirements. Make sure all of the boxes are check for the most inclusive searches. (The "Inventory", "End User", and "Dealer" specifications are set by the owner type of the company who owns the computer) (The "Sold" specification is set by a box in the equipment specifications labeled "Sold" which indicates that the equipment is not currently available)
  16.  

  17. If you have one or more pieces of equipment listed in the equipment list on the bottom half of the "Find Equipment" window, you may select one by double-clicking on it with the mouse.
  18. An "Equipment Information" window will be displayed. All of the detailed equipment specifications are accessible from this window including previous quotes, equipment costs, and pictures available. You can verify if this equipment may be suitable for the customer. If you want to scan through the other matching items, you can press the "Prev" and "Next" buttons at the bottom of the window. If you want to change the search specifications, you can press the "Find" button and alter the search parameters.
  19. Press the "Events" tab in the "Equipment Information" window. The bottom grid will show what pictures are available for this item. Ideally, pictures will setup when the equipment is entered. At this point, just note that if you want to associate new pictures with item, you can press either the "New" button next to the picture grid or the "Find pictures" on the right side of the window. Pictures marked with a check in the "Quote" column will be send automatically with email quotes.
  20. Press the "Owner / codes" tab. The equipment owner w/phone is displayed so you know who to contact. If you double click with the mouse on the word "OWNER", MLS 2000 will open up a "Customer Information" window for that company. Press the "Change Owner >>" button if the ownership of the equipment changes (for example: you buy it!)
  21. Press the "Customer quoted" tab. A list of customers previously quoted will be displayed. It may be helpful to review other recent inquires. If you want to quote this customer…Acme Tools…Press the "New" button next to the grid listing other quotations. NOTE: There are other ways of initiating this quote, like selecting "FILE / NEW" from the menu bar and then selecting "Quote". The procedure in this tutorial is one example which may be slightly longer but also passes information that may be useful to you.
  22. The yellow "Quote information" window will be displayed. Verify that the quote is from the right person (presumably you). You may change the salesperson if necessary.
  23. Verify that the "Quote to:" company and contact person are correct. You may change the contact person with the mouse on that control.
  24. Verify the equipment being quoted. The full equipment description is on the first tab. Also verify the price, commission, and terms (if applicable - many quotes don't contain terms) and change as necessary.
  25. Press the "Quote message" tab and enter any message to the customer which you want to be sent with the quote.
  26. Press the "Quote notes" tab and enter any internal notes regarding this quote. NORMALLY, "Quote notes" are internal and are not sent to the customer.
  27. Press the "Misc info" tab. Some MLS 2000 users setup more than one quote format. If you have paid for alternate quote formats you can change them here. You can also change the fax number (for this quote only!) if necessary.
  28. Press the "Update" button to save the quote! The "Preview" button allows you to view the printed quote on the computer screen. The "Print" button is used to print a hard copy of the quote. The "Fax" button sends the quote over the phone lines to a fax machine (Button will be disabled if there isn't any fax number) (Also requires a computer phone hookup and Symnatac WinFax installed) The "Email" button sends the quote via email. (Button will be disabled if there isn't any email address) (Also requires Microsoft Outlook properly installed)
  29. When you have sent the quote press the "Exit" button.

YOU ARE DONE!

A record of the quote is saved. If you want to quote additional equipment, you can begin a new equipment search or just find additional equipment from the "Equipment Information" window from the search in steps 16 to 19.