Inventory templates are a way to get all of your sites on the same page when talking about inventory for a clinical trial. For each protocol you create in Slope, you can create inventory templates to model a "classification" of inventory, such as a kit, shipper, bulk item, etc. When you deploy the protocol at a site, their dashboards will be populated with the inventory templates you've setup for that protocol. On the backend, Slope allows you to connect these templates to the SKUs you have already defined. This article will help orient you with this powerful feature.
Create a new inventory template
Once you've created a new protocol, Slope will prompt you to create your first inventory template. You can also click the Actions button in the top right corner of the protocol details view and select Create template from the dropdown list of options. Either of these paths will lead you to the new inventory template form:
Here's a little more detail about each of these form fields:
- Associated SKU - This dropdown shows a list of all the active SKUs in your Sponsor catalog. They are shown with the SKU number in parenthesis after the name. Select the SKU you want to associate with your new inventory template.
- Name - Give the inventory template a name. This will be seen by everyone that is connected to the inventory template.
- Type - Select a primary inventory category from the dropdown list. The current list of available options is: Kit, Equipment, Shippers, Drug, Device, Study Materials, Bulk, and Other. This category definition is helpful for sites to organize and group their inventories across various dashboards.
- Low Inventory Alert Threshold - You can define a default value for low inventory alerts to trigger for inventories created from this template. If you have a Fulfillment Plan associated with this template, this value will not be editable by sites.
- Allow Sites to set their own Low Inventory Alert Threshold - Check this box to allow sites to choose their own alert thresholds. We recommend leaving this box checked to allow maximum flexibility for sites. If you have a Fulfillment Plan associated with this template, this value is overridden for the sites associated.
- Inventory Plan - If you have more than one active Inventory Plan, you'll see this dropdown, which will let you assign the template to the selected plan.
Once you click the Create Inventory Template button, you'll be taken to the protocol catalog tab, which will show the new template in the list. Please note that the protocol list paginates after 25 items and the templates are shown alphabetically. Therefore, you might not see your template in this list if you have a lot of inventory templates loaded.
Viewing inventory template details
Clicking on an inventory template name in the protocol catalog list will take you to the inventory template detail view. This dashboard has tabs to allow you to see inventory levels at all the sites subscribed to the template, in addition to any orders or shipments associated. You may also create exports from this view through the Actions button in the top right corner.
Because there is enough context provided in this view, granular site-level inventory counts can be seen. If you want to see inventory levels for every inventory template instance at a site, you can click the site name in the list and be forwarded to the protocol site view.
Updating inventory template details
Editing an inventory template is as easy as clicking an Actions button next to one in the protocol catalog tab list and selecting Edit from the dropdown list of options. You can also edit an inventory template from the Actions button in the top right corner when you are at the inventory template details view. Either pathway will take you to a form through which you can update these details.
If you are trying to update an inventory template that has already been pushed to one or many sites, Slope will let you know that your change will have consequences by displaying a red alert message. In this instance, the details you update on the inventory template will traverse to all the sites that are connected to the protocol. The inventories at the site will be updated with the new field attributes you provide. Be careful when changing these values after you have pushed a protocol, as it has the capability to generate confusion at the site.
Managing inventory templates
By default inventory templates will be created in the active state. You can transition templates to a disabled state, which places the template in a read-only state and removes it from primary dashboards. Closing an inventory template will permanently remove it from dashboard views and make it accessible, but read-only.
Disabling (or closing) an inventory template that has pushed to sites will not disable (or close) the connected inventory at the site. This method has been designed to allow sites maximum flexibility when dealing with how inventory managed at their location.
Deleting inventory templates
You may destroy an inventory templates if it has no items at any of the sites it has been pushed to. This is to prevent you from accidentally removing something that has accumulated an audit trail history. When you delete an inventory template that has already been pushed to a study site, the associated inventories at sites will not be destroyed. The connection to your protocol will be broken, and the site will still have access to their inventory and can manage the items within.
In the scenario where you:
- Create an inventory template
- Push it to a site
- Delete it, then
- Create a new inventory template with the same name
Once you save the new inventory template, Slope will re-attach to the existing inventory template at sites based upon the names matching. This is to prevent a name collision and help keep things tidy.