If the wrong item is packaged and shipped to a customer, the best practice is to adjust the order and the shipping log(s) to reflect reality. This will keep inventory accurate, plus maintain a history of events.
There are several factors to consider when making adjustments in this area. The following guidelines will help, but note that the details may change depending on your workflows, system policies, and customization.
When the original shipping log does not reflect what was actually shipped (i.e. the log includes the correct items instead of the incorrect items):
- Void the shipment and enter a note in the log history to explain the error.
Why? Voiding the original shipment returns the items to inventory, if applicable. (You will make a correcting shipment later). Noting the error this way makes audit tracking much easier.
- Adjust the order by entering a line item for the items packaged in error. Use 0.00 for the unit price and note the reason for the entry in the order log and on the line item note.
Why? It is important that the order reflect reality. Although the customer did not order these items' they were shipped nonetheless, and that shipment is related to this order. Be sure to enter 0.00 for the selling price; remember, the customer paid nothing for the item(s).
- Create a new shipment that includes the items that were actually shipped to the customer.
Why? This entry will reflect reality for inventory purposes. If the wrong item was shipped, it needs to be accounted for in inventory balances. Be sure to use the real shipping date to keep your record history accurate.
- If the items shipped in error will be returned, enter a return shipment and leave it pending until you receive the items.
Why? This entry will track the return of the items shipped in error. Once the return shipment is received, inventory will be adjusted accordingly.
Note: If the items will not be returned, this step is not required; inventory levels will be correct.