Bill of Materials Setup in Access 2007

Posted on 2008-10-06
Last Modified: 2012-05-05
I am looking at building a database that allows me to print off Bill of Materials Reports.  I have a parts and assembly database already that I have been trying to convert to a BOM database.  However, I seem to be rather unsucessful at it and wondered if anyone had any partial/complete programs that would help me out or at least give me a starting place.
Question by:ITennis
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LVL 84

Accepted Solution

Scott McDaniel (Microsoft Access MVP - EE MVE ) earned 250 total points
ID: 22654199
This can be a pretty intense undertaking ... a true BOM system is complex and requires a lot of work and a very strong understanding of relational database structuring. If you simply need to print BOMs, and you're not concerned with inventory control, shipping etc etc then a simple 2 table structure would work. However, if your needs are more complex you'll need a lot more work.

Have you checked the templates here:

There's an inventory template there which may help.
LVL 18

Assisted Solution

jmoss111 earned 250 total points
ID: 22654680
Hi ITennis,

There is a Bill Of Material example by Joe Celko at .  I've never done a BOM system in a relational database but my background is heavy in Engineering BOM systems with COBOL and Honeywell IDS - a hierarchial model; and LSM is shooting you straight on the complexity.


Author Comment

ID: 22654694
I simply need a database that would allow me to organize part numbers, descriptions, print reports, and allow me to format my information so that I can import it into a purchase MRP System.  For now I have one master list that has lookup list under it for categories, Material, and other options.  The master list then runs two queries that are my assembly list and part list.  Then the forms/reports run off of the queries.  The second table structure that you were talking about would include what fields so that I could get a simple BOM report
LVL 18

Assisted Solution

jmoss111 earned 250 total points
ID: 22654728
Check out the link I gave you; it's been so long since I've looked at it, it may be just what you're looking for.  
LVL 84

Assisted Solution

by:Scott McDaniel (Microsoft Access MVP - EE MVE )
Scott McDaniel (Microsoft Access MVP - EE MVE ) earned 250 total points
ID: 22654809
It's impossible to tell you exactly what you should do to build a proper import file for your MRP system, since we don't know (a) what your current Access table structure is or (b) what your MRP system expects. MRP systems are even more complex than BOM systems, as they typically take into account different vendors, different vendor_lead_times, different partnumbers for the same part etc etc etc ...

However, if your "master list" is built with several subtables/queries, you should probably start off there and examine the relationship between those tables. In most cases, you'll have a "header" table which would describe the item, and then you'd have detail records (i.e. "lineitem" data) which would show the actual items which make up that assembly ... in most cases, you might also have a lineitem which is itself an assembly, and you'll have to account for that as well.

As to reports - again, if your data is formatted in a Header/Detail format, then you'd build a Report/Subreport type of object, with the Report showing the main data and the Subreport showing the "lineitems" ... the difficulty would be when your lineitem is itself an assembly, I think. You can have several levels of subreports, so you might be able to do something like Report-SubReport-Subreport (and more levels, if needed). Again, this is a very complex subject, and not one that lends itself well to online forums.

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