BOMIST was created with a specific workflow in mind and the text bellow tries to clarify it. However, most time workflows are really just a personal thing. Always feel free to adapt it to your needs and/or let us know if you'd like to see it improved in some way.
BOMIST allows you to import/export the complete database. You can also import/export almost every table to/from a CSV file. When exporting/importing data through CSV files links between BOMIST Entries (see below) are not preserved though.
An Entry is an element that can be added/edited/removed from your BOMIST database. Available entries are: Parts, Files, Orders, Projects and History. We give it a name because they have several properties in common and so we can avoid writing "Parts, Files, Orders, Projects or History" when refering to them. We would simply write Entries or Entry instead.
A Part describes a single Manufacturer Part Number in your inventory along with relevant information about it.
Because writing and specially looking for all this data for each part would be a daunting task, BOMIST tries to make it easier for you through an autocompleter and by fetching data from the web. This is made possible through Octopart integration. As soon as you start typing a Part's name, BOMIST will give you suggestions and once you select one BOMIST will fill in the appropriate fields with the data it found on the web.
You can manually adjust each part's stock either by setting the exact amount of units you have available or by adding/removing a given amount at a time. But humans do mistakes and managing stock manually can go wrong for this same reason. To avoid that BOMIST encourages you to either add or remove stock through Orders and Projects, respectively, and only doing it manually on specific situations. By letting the computer do most of stock updates you avoid errors on managing your inventory.
A Document is any file you normally want to associate to a Part, Project or Order, such as datasheets, reference manuals, application notes, CAD drawings, invoices and images. A Document can also have an attachment file (e.g., if an application note comes along with sample code, then the code zipped into a file would be the attachment file).
When assigning a Document to an entry you can select where it comes from. If a Document is already available on your BOMIST database, then you can find it on your Workspace. Otherwise, you may create a new one from a file you have on your File System or by finding one on the Web. This means you can create Documents while creating or editing other Entries if that option is available.
Similarly, when creating a new Document from scratch, you can create one from a file on your File System or by finding one on the Web.
A Project may have several revisions and each revision will have its own Bill Of Materials (BOM). When you assemble a project, the right amount of stock, listed on the BOM, will be removed from your inventory. Projects consume Parts when you assemble them.
Once you finish a Schematic using your favourite Electronics CAD software (e.g. EagleCAD, Kicad, Altium, etc) you are ready to generate a BOM. Usually you can export that BOM to a CSV file which you'll then import into BOMIST. You can also manually create a BOM in BOMIST but that would be less efficient.
A BOM is complete when you assign a real Part for each reference listed on it.
Fields available on BOMs:
Once you have a complete BOM you can then export it to a CSV file and share it with a collegue, or open it with a spreadsheets software (e.g. LibreOffice, Microsoft Excel) and further edit to meet your needs.
BOMIST provides you with real-time pricing information. This data includes current stock on a given seller, price breaks, Minimum Order Quantities (MOQ) and factory lead times and whenever BOMIST presents you with a price, all this data is taken into account. This makes it easier for you to decide from which Seller to order Parts, whether you prefer to make a decision solely based on price or also based on availability and/or lead times, for example.
Just select a Seller and it will be automatically set as the preferred seller for the current Part in the table.
BOMIST provides you with an extremely useful tool for quoting purposes. Whenever a customer asks you a quote for a given amount of units to be produced, an estimate of BOM cost is just a few clicks away. The prices shown on BOMIST take into account MOQ and price breaks so, as you may expect, the more you buy the cheaper it gets. Be sure to always cross-check prices with seller's most up-to-date data though, since this is just an estimate.
When you are ready to assemble a Project, BOMIST will tell you if you have enough stock or if you need to order some (or all) of the Parts you'll need. In case you don't have enough stock BOMIST can create a new Order automatically. Also, since during the assembling process a few parts may be wasted, you can also specify an extra margin to order.
An Order is a list of Parts you need or want to order.
BOMIST provides a list of parts to order, but how do you take it to your Seller? Major online distributors provide a way to import BOM tools through a CSV file. All you have to do is to export your Order to an CSV file and then import it on your preffered Seller's website. If, instead, you use a local shop to order your parts, you can always print that CSV file and take it there.
Once the order is placed, do not forget to change the Order's state to Processed (or Delivered, if you get the parts at the same time).
Similarly to Projects, BOMIST provides you with a total cost estimate for each Order you create. Be sure to always cross-check prices with the most up-to-date data the Seller you choose provides though.
History keeps a log of changes for every Entry (except for History itself). This makes it easier to undertand what happened to your iventory by answering questions like "hey, I though we still had stock on this, where has it been spent?", "we shoud, maybe you forgot to order more or it wasn't delivered yet?".