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Secondary unit of measure can be used for cases where you need to track in two
units of measure and there is no constant conversion between the two unit of measures
A unit of measure conversion is a mathematical relationship between two different units of
measure. For example, 16 ounces = 1 pound, or 2.2 pounds = 1 kilogram. If you want to
transact items in units of measure belonging to classes other than their primary UOM class,
you must define conversions between the base units of measure in different UOM classes
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UOM conversion is used when you have UOMs either from same class or different classes that have a specific fixed conversion factor.
Intraclass example would be buying in Dozens or eaches using 12 eaches as a dozen.
Interclass example - 1 each of an item could always be 2 lbs.
Secondary UOM could be used where for the same transaction, you could have 2 different UOMs that are not usually constant even for the same item like calorie content in a pack of food, or specific bits of memory on a memory chip or energy content (Joules) for a particular volume of gas/oil (note that it changes with temperature/pressure).
Dual UOM or Catch Weight management is used primarily in the meat and metal Industries. In these industries due to variability of each piece logistic unit of measure will generally differ from the valuation unit of measure. Shipping and receiving generally happens in pieces or Box but payment happens on the weight. The key requirement for this business process is to track the inventory in two different unrelated UOMs where the relationship between both the UOMs is not fixed.
Inventory module’s Dual Unit of Measure functionality enables users to transact inventory items in two unrelated units of measures. With this functionality we can track item both in primary UOM as well as secondary UOM. Both the UOM and QTY are stored in the separate fields called secondary UOM and Secondary Qty in Database. This functionality was available in process inventory in 11i but introduced to discrete inventory also in R12.Thus, if a user chooses to enable dual unit of measure control for a given inventory item,Oracle Purchasing module will now require quantity entry in two units of measure according to the defaulting rules set up at the item level.
We need to be aware that by just defining an item in dual UOM does not set the system to track the transaction in both the UOM. While creating an item we should set “Tracking ” as ” Primary and Secondary”. once done system will track all transactions in primary and secondary quantity and UOM.Items, which are tracked for Primary & Secondary unit of measure, have visibility to both the primary and secondary units of measure throughout all the standard inventory inquiries for Oracle Inventory organizations.