Finally! How many days was that item out of stock?

For some years we’ve been wanting to add a report that tells you how many days in the chosen time interval each item was in or out of stock.

Well, in the last year or so WHO has been asking for this type of information around the Pacific, and we’ve also been trying to build up a set of reports that can be used as key performance indicators. Also, if you’re generating reports based on item usage, it’s important to know about out of stock periods, as they skew usage figures downwards.

So as of mSupply v2.0r6 we’ve a new “days out of stock” report available.

The report had a few challenges to produce:

  • It’s actually a reasonably complex calculation, as you have to work back from current stock, adding and subtracting stock movements caused by each transaction to work out what the stock was on a particular day. Our first efforst were taking 20 minutes to run. Now it’s down to just a few seconds, depending on the size of your data file and the period you choose to calculate for.
  • On top of that, it’s not enough to say that only days with zero stock were effectively out of stock- often there will be a period of time when there is a small amount of stock left, but you’re effectively out of stock, as this stock can’t or won’t be used to fulfil a customer order (it might be too close to expiry, or a broken pack, or just too small a quantity to make it worthwhile supplying. To get around this, the report allows the user to specify a level as a percentage of the maximum stock holding for the period that will be considered as out of stock. For example, if your maximum stock holding was 100,000 tablets, and you specifiy 1% as the cutoff, any days where the stock holding was less than 1000 tablets will be considered as out of stock…

You can see a preview of the report here. Click the thumbnail for a full size image.


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