Parts: Updating Parts Pricing from a File in G2

PURPOSE: To help answer the most frequently asked questions while running a parts file conversion.

Astra Product: G2 Parts Manager.

FAQ’s

What is different in G2 compared to the old Astra menus?

Very little has changed. The steps are still the same, but the G2 screen is much easier to use and will put all the conversions into one place.

How do I get the latest parts file?

Contact the parts manufacturer directly and request the latest file. This may be on the manufacturer website. The file will to be in a text format. IDS is unable to work with .pdf versions of parts files.

The parts manufacturer may claim they have provided IDS with the latest file. This is not the case.

The file needs to be provided directly to your parts department.

The parts file I received is not in a text-based format (.txt, .asc, .prn files). What do I do? 

If the file received is in .pdf format, please contact the parts manufacturer to request a .txt version of their parts file.

The .xls (or .xlsx) file extension is for Microsoft Excel. These spreadsheets can be formatted and converted into a useable .txt file when necessary. If unsure how to convert the file, contact your local IT or IDS Support.

 The file may come in an .exe or .zip file. In these cases, the parts file has been compressed so it will take up less space. For .exe files, double-click on them in order to extract the parts file.

If it is a .zip file, a WinZip or a similar program is needed in order to extract it.

*Some newer versions of Windows are capable of opening a .zip file without a separate program.

I have my parts file, now what do I do with it?

Rename the file so it has a unique name, possibly putting the date into the filename. This will differentiate the current file apart from any past parts files which are already in place. Spaces and special characters cannot be part of the file name.

Before using the file, it’s a good idea to open it in Notepad to check for errors and remove all invalid symbols. Remove unwanted symbols by using the Edit and Replace option from the pull down menu. For example, some manufacturers place $ symbols before the MSRP. These symbols cannot be brought into the parts fields in Astra.

The file needs to be put into the TEMP.PARTS file on the Astra server. The directory it will need to go into is E:\UV\Accounts\##\TEMP.PARTS, where ## is the Astra location/account.

If a user does not have access to this folder, please contact the system administrator, IT, or IDS Support for assistance in order to have permissions granted to the User ID.

For SMS customers please contact IDS Support and we will help you navigate to the correct folder on our shared server.

My file has been placed in the TEMP.PARTS folder. What else needs to be done before loading the file?

If the parts database has become messy over time and there are multiple part numbers for the same items, a best practice would be to use the Parts Merge (G2 Parts – Utilities) routine to remove the duplicates.

If the “All Parts” group will not be used, verify there is a matching Parts Group for the vendor in G2 Admin – Setup – Update Codes & Tables; Parts. Also, check the Parts Pricing Grid (G2 Parts – Utilities) for the parts vendor prior to loading the parts file.

My file is ready to go. How do I load it into Astra from the TEMP.PARTS folder?

If using a file from one of the following parts vendors, there is a template already in place for use in G2 (Astra release 11.14.7 or greater).

The available vendors are: Coast, Mercury/Midas, Northwest, Stag-Parkway

*For other parts vendors a custom conversion routine will need to be set up.

How do I load a parts file using the pre-defined templates for Coast, Mercury/Midas, Northwest, Stag-Parkway? 

To use one of these, click on Functions at the top of the `Update Parts from Disk/Downloads’ screen and then choose `Pre-defined Conversion’. Select the desired Parts Provider.

Enter the parts File Name or click the magnifier button to locate it within the TEMP.PARTS folder.

Enter the Vendor Code for this parts provider. Double-click the blank field to search.

Check off the options for:

  • Update List Prices? Check this off if the dealership normally uses the parts provider’s MSRP for the list price. Leave unchecked if the dealership normally sets its own list pricing.
  • Add New Part Numbers? Check this off to import any new part numbers since the previous parts file loaded for this parts provider.
  • Update UPC Numbers?

Enter the Parts Group that is in place for this parts provider, or use the ALL group if you do not use parts groups. If left blank this will cause it to default to the ALL parts group. Double-click the blank field to search.

Click the Update Parts button.

To view parts which were not added to parts inventory during the conversion, click on Reports at the top of the screen and Preview or Print the Parts Not Added Report.

Similarly, users can Preview or Print the Price Change Report to show which prices have been updated during this conversion routine.

How do I build a custom conversion for a parts file that is for a different vendor?

Choose the Parts Utility menu and then choose the file that will be used. Give the routine its own Parts Conversion Name. Be descriptive so that users can use it again the next time they load a file from this parts provider. Avoid using spaces or special characters.

Parts: building custom conversion

 

Enter the parts File Name or click the magnifier button to locate it within the TEMP.PARTS folder.

Enter the Vendor Code for this parts provider.

Enter the Delimiter which is used to separate the fields in the parts file. For example, if there file is

Comma delimited then enter , into this field. G2 will automatically place parenthesis around the delimiter. If the file is tab-delimited, enter T instead of the tab key.

Parts: Update downloaded parts

 

Check off your options for:

  • Update List Prices? Check this off if the dealership normally uses this vendor’s MSRP for the list price. Leave un-checked if the dealership normally set your own list pricing.
  • Add New Part Numbers? Check this off to import any new part numbers since the previous parts file loaded for this parts provider. 

Set up the Conversion Format for the parts file. This area will define the layout of the information within the parts file. Most parts providers will send this information along with the parts file. The user will define each field to be imported from the file into Astra. Below is an example of a simple pricing file which contains part number, description, cost, and list:

Parts: Simple pricing

 

In this example, the Part Number field begins at the first character and ends with the tenth character (counters have been added to the example to make determining field lengths easier). Description starts on character 11 and ends with character 43. Cost is characters 44 through 51 and List is characters 52 through 57.

Following along the counter at the bottom, the formatting should appear as follows for this file. Choose the appropriate Data Field for each one using the drop-down list.

Parts: Choosing data field

 

The `Options Field’ area for each field will determine how the data is to be formatted. For example, “T” will trim off extra spaces. “D2” will add two decimal places to a dollar value. The easiest way to do this is to right-click on the Options box on each Row and click “Choose Options.” Simply check off the ones which apply to each field. Contact Support if help is needed figuring out which options are appropriate.

Once the field lengths and options have been entered, click the Save icon at the top. This will allow the “Import File” button to become available under Step 1. Click the button.

Once the file is imported, Click Preview under Step 2 in order to verify the data formatting setup is working correctly.

If the Preview shows that the fields have been separated out and formatted correctly, exit the previewer and go on to Step 3 – Update Parts. There is no confirmation message, so make sure the user is ready to load the file before clicking on this button.

To view parts which were not added to parts inventory during the conversion, click on Reports at the top of the screen and Preview or Print the Parts Not Added Report.

Similarly, users can Preview or Print the Price Change Report to show which prices have been updated during this conversion routine.

My parts conversion is ready to go, but how do I verify everything is in order prior to running the routine?

Make sure users use the Preview button to confirm everything is formatted correctly before using the

Update Parts button.

Feel free to contact IDS Support with any questions on this process. 

The parts file has been loaded. Are there any further steps I need to perform?

It may be a good idea to revisit the Parts Pricing Grid (G2 Parts – Utilities) after running this routine. If a user has checked off the Update List Prices option, only the cost and list were updated for the Parts Group.

To apply the updated prices to L2, Wholesale, Internal, Warranty and Distributor pricing levels, check them off at the bottom of this screen and click the Update Prices button. Users can also setup the price rounding options here. Do not overwrite the full list price if you wish to maintain the manufacturer’s suggested retail price.

Similarly, a user may wish to update the master parts pricing from the pricing grid. Unfortunately there is no screen in G2 for this step as of yet. Users will have to visit the traditional Astra menu path 3-5-6 UPDATE MASTER PRICES FROM GRID.

The final steps involve rebuilding indexes. These have not been added into the G2 system as of this time. Some of the indexes take time to rebuild, so users may wish to run them on a spare workstation or as they are leaving for the day:

  • Rebuild Parts Soundex in 11-8-5
  • Rebuild Vendor Parts Index in menu 11-8-6
  • Rebuild Master Vendor Parts Index in menu 11-8-13
  • Rebuild Master Parts Soundex Index in menu 3-5-3

 

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