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An allocation is of a single item from one location to many locations (alloc_header contains the item and from location whilst alloc_detail contains the quantity and to_locations).
A transfer is of many items from one location to another single location (tsfhead contains the from and to locations and tsfdetail contains the items and quantities).
They are both ways of transferring goods between locations once they are within the retailer's internal supply chain but allocations are created externally (e.g. by Oracle Retail Allocations) so a user cannot create an allocation in the RMS front end whereas transfers can be created both internally (tsf screens in RMS) or externally (from SIM, WMS or others via RIB messages).
Automated replenishment in RMS can create transfers (or add to existing open transfers with the same from/to locations). Replenishment is a pull method of restocking a store whereas allocation is a push method of stocking.
Automated replenishment in RMS can create allocations as part of a purchase order of type cross dock which means the goods will be allocated when the receipt is processed.
In operational terms, both are likely treated in the WMS or Store system as the same, i.e. a movement of stock between locations and may be combined on the loading bay and loaded on the same trucks.
Edited by: oracle-retail-consultant on 19-May-2013 03:35