Release Notes - October 2022

Welcome to the October Release Notes (covering August - September 2022)

Welcome to the October Release Notes!

It's been a busy two months with a a whole host of improvements and defect resolutions across Brightpearl Accounting and Marketplaces, AND new features and improvements in E-Commerce and Partnerships! PLUS a whole new area (Reporting and Analytics) with two whole new products!

Let's go!

Accounting

The accounting team continues to move forward with the Intacct Connector Beta, working closely with the beta participants to continue improving all aspects of our integration with Sage Intacct!

Defect Resolution Aged Debtor report showing payments in the wrong age column. We've fixed a date formatting issue that caused the Aged Debtor/Accounts Receivable report to incorrectly includes payments in the 120+ days column.
Defect Resolution making-tax-digital obligations screen was returning a white page for an account based on cash accounting. For UK customers, we fixed a bug that caused the "Get obligations from HMRC" screen to not load when a Brightpearl account's tax setting was set to "Cash".

Automation

The automation team’s main focus has been the design and discovery of NextGen automation. The team continue to have an eye on Black Friday / Cyber Monday, the groundworks for which have been laid. Documentation has been updated to clarify on the topic of action-conditions.

E-Commerce

We have released the Shopify Order Download Delay Feature! The Shopify Order Download Delay feature allows merchants to delay their order for a few minutes to allow 3rd party Shopify apps to run on an order before it drops into Brightpearl. This is particularly helpful for Fraud Check apps. 

Read more here:

Marketplaces

We’ve launched onto the new SP-API for the Amazon connector, for authorization, orders, listings, FBA managed inventory and payments reports. You can find out more about what changed from that launch in the Help Guide: https://help.brightpearl.com/hc/en-us/articles/5299189058589-What-to-expect-after-the-SP-API-migration.

Some issues were identified during and shortly after launch, that had not been found during beta testing. The team have been busy prioritizing fixes for those and working with Amazon to understand some of the data we’re seeing. We are also working on new ways to recover missed orders, to build resilience in the future.

The next migration to SP-API will be for inventory, price and fulfilment updates. The team are working on this as our next critical goal. If you are interested in getting involved in beta testing for this, please reach out to Brightpearl Support.

IMPROVEMENT Amazon connector error logging enhanced. SP-API order downloader logging has been upgraded and optional enhanced logging is available to support future investigations. We have fixed a number of different granular causes of order errors. Additionally, we now only retry orders that are genuinely likely to succeed on future attempts (e.g. not missing critical data from Amazon that prevents Brightpearl processing). This makes the downloader more efficient and prevents issues where it used to get backed up retrying failed orders and miss new ones.
IMPROVEMENT FBA orders download without a time limit. FBA orders in the old MWS order downloader were being missed. This issue was partly caused by Amazon's handling of FBA orders, where they stay in the pending status until all items ship. We've verified this and explained the problems with that to Amazon, who are using our examples to investigate. We've redesigned how we check for new FBA orders to improve reliability with this. The old downloader only checked back for a limited time. Our new status update driven design does not have the same issues. Unfortunately, until Amazon change how they send FBA orders via the API, delays to these will still occur unless you download pending orders. Speak to Brightpearl Support to find out more about pending order downloads and how we're improving those if FBA order delays continue to cause you issues.
IMPROVEMENT Support added for orders with a symbol in Amazon SKU. The new SP-API Amazon order downloader had a problem with Amazon SKUs, where they contain symbols not officially supported by Brightpearl. Unfortunately, this wasn't identified during beta testing over the last two months. We've released a fix to handle these, as we understand that merchants cannot change SKUs in Amazon. Orders already downloaded cannot be reprocessed so will need to be manually added and fulfilled via Amazon Seller Central.
IMPROVEMENT

Amazon order item prices calculation issues improved. A key deliverable for our new SP-API order downloader was to fix long-standing issues with handing prices and tax amounts from Amazon. These were inconsistently calculated for different marketplaces, did not always match payments from Amazon, and often failed to handle the withheld tax correctly. The new downloader has been fully redesigned and an explanation of what to expect is available here: https://help.brightpearl.com/hc/en-us/articles/5299189058589-What-to-expect-after-the-SP-API-migration#autolink-heading-0. Net prices and tax amounts are not supplied by Amazon for EU marketplaces, so you may find our tax calculation of those from the gross price and Amazon's differs by pennies. We are chasing them to add this data to the API to resolve that. Amazon do not appear to send withheld taxes from the Canada marketplace. We have contacted them to investigate if that's expected behavior or a defect they can resolve.

IMPROVEMENT

Order net value calculation for EU marketplaces improved. Through beta testing of the new SP-API order downloader, we identified that Amazon do not send net prices and tax amounts for EU marketplaces, only a gross price. This was undocumented and we've requested Amazon start sending this data. We are working around this by doing our own tax calculations to get the net price and tax amounts, which may differ from Amazon's.

IMPROVEMENT

FBM orders download process improved. The new design of the SP-API order downloader is faster and more efficient. It also tracks when we first see an update from the Amazon SP-API, so we can identify if delays is in Amazon's API or our downloader.

Defect Resolution Amazon listings without prices were not able to be downloaded. When Amazon listings have no price, the connector was failing to process that listing report. We've changed this so it treats blank prices as a "0" price and can process these reports successfully.
Defect Resolution Unsupported Replacement Orders were being included in error alerts. The Amazon connector was incorrectly flagging Replacement Orders as errored orders, missing price and tax data from Amazon, in the E-Commerce Channel Alerts report. We don’t support Replacement Orders currently and we’ve updated our error logging to ignore those.
Defect Resolution FBA GON not being marked as shipped automatically when downloading pending orders. FBA GONs were not getting marked as shipped automatically for pending orders. This has been fixed in the new SP-API order downloader.
Defect Resolution Tax Codes now update when order moves from Pending to a ready status. The pending order downloader in the SP-API version has been redesigned and now updates Tax Codes when orders go from pending to a confirmed status.
Defect Resolution Orders only download from 'Start Orders Downloading From' date. Previously, Amazon orders would start downloading as soon as you connected the channel. The new SP-API order downloader will not download Amazon orders until the "Start Orders Downloading From" date. This ensures you have more control when adding a new Amazon channel.
Defect Resolution FBA orders were being missed. For accounts not downloading pending orders, some FBA orders were being missed after migration onto SP-API. This was a defect that was not identified during alpha and beta testing, caused by a conflict in processing unsupported statuses between our order downloader retry process and order reconciliation report. A fix has been implemented from 23rd September.
Defect Resolution Zipped listing reports from Amazon were not being processed into Brightpearl. When the connector downloads the Listings report from Amazon SP-API, this is sometimes sent as a zip file from Amazon. We were able to unzip successfully but then there was a conflict with another processing step for the file, which prevented the listings loading to Brightpearl. We have now fixed this and all queued listing reports will be downloaded and processed correctly. This defect was not identified in beta testing of the SP-API listings report download, as Amazon do not always zip these files and none were encountered during beta.

Order Management

The OMS team have been working hard on updates to ensure the maintainability and security of Brightpearl, whilst supporting other teams in this area. We’ve also been collaborating with other teams to support the changes to Brightpearl’s order management systems and architecture.

Partnerships

The Partnerships team has been focused on making it easier for development partners to build integrations between Brightpearl and 3rd party solutions. We’ll soon be releasing a Java library and accompanying documentation to facilitate authentication and communication with our API. Alongside this, we’re working to ensure our API clears the way for more effective and efficient integrations.

IMPROVEMENT Default all new apps added in DSUI to be instance apps. Brightpearl apps can no longer be created using our older authentication methods, i.e. system apps and staff apps. All new applications should therefore use the latest and most secure method; OAuth (instance apps). While we will continue supporting existing apps using the older methods for now, we'd strongly encourge our customers and partners to upgrade to OAuth. https://help.brightpearl.com/hc/en-us/articles/4414316494865-Sunsetting-authentication-methods
Defect Resolution All Transaction Statement SEARCH returns null value for the dueAmount when an invoice or credit is unpaid. We’ve updated the All Transaction Statement SEARCH endpoint such that the dueAmount field provides an accurate value. Previously this returned NULL when the full balance of an invoice was outstanding, i.e. there is no payment allocated. It will now return the outstanding amount.
Defect Resolution All Transaction Statement SEARCH calculates dueAmount incorrectly for partially paid SCs. Additionally the dueAmount was previously incorrect for partially paid sales credits. It will now show the correct value in this scenario.

Platform

The Platform team have continued their collaboration with the OMS team on architectural changes. Active anti-virus scanning for uploaded files has also been delivered.

Reporting and Analytics

Having just released our brand new Benchmarking and Retail Analytics tools, the team is now working on adding new connectors for even more data insights and building new analytics dashboards that delve into the performance of products and inventory.

NEW PRODUCT Brightpearl Retail Benchmarking. Brightpearl Retail Benchmarking is a new tool providing a snapshot of your business's performance in the previous year by combining Brightpearl data with that from advertising and marketing channels. Discover growth opportunities by viewing your performance metrics against industry benchmarks. Read more here: https://help.brightpearl.com/hc/en-us/articles/6110280806429-Benchmarking-overview
NEW PRODUCT Brightpearl Retail Analytics. The premium addition to Benchmarking, Brightpearl Retail Analytics is a powerful ecommerce analytics platform making it easy to consolidate, understand and explore performance data with automated reporting and self-service analytics tools. Read more here: https://help.brightpearl.com/hc/en-us/articles/6464869335197-Retail-Analytics-overview

Supply Chain

Supply Chain are continuing to work hard on updates to make sure that Brightpearl continues to be maintainable and secure. We’re doing this with one eye on Black Friday / Cyber Monday, which means we’re paying extra attention to any changes we might be able to make that will contribute to scale and throughput.

 

That's it, you're all caught up! We look forward to bringing you the next update in December! 

Have more questions? Submit a request