Item Catalogs Overview

Oracle Inventory lets you use item catalogs to partition your items into groups that share common characteristics. You can determine in advance what is required to uniquely define an item in each group. You can define your catalogs by setting up as many distinct item catalog groups as you need to partition your items and use unique characteristics within your catalog group to completely describe the items you assign to the group.

Oracle Inventory provides item catalogs to help you quickly locate items based on key characteristics

Business Needs

With Oracle Inventory you can:

· Easily and intuitively search for items based on cataloged characteristics

· Find common existing items when developing an engineering prototype

· Use a standard language of item characteristics to describe your items

· Maintain detailed item descriptions without embedding the descriptions in your item numbers

· Implement group technology

Major Features

  1. Catalog Groups

Oracle Inventory lets you define catalog groups to match the natural groupings of your items. For example, you can define separate catalog groups for finished goods, sub-assemblies, and raw materials, or break it down further by defining catalog groups by commodity for raw materials.

  1. Item Characteristics

Each catalog group can have its own set of item characteristics, called descriptive elements. You can define as many descriptive elements as necessary to describe the characteristics of your items. For each descriptive element, you can specify whether an entry for the element is optional, giving you complete flexibility in defining your catalog.

  1. Item Description Default

You can use descriptive element values as a default item description. You can choose the descriptive elements you want Oracle Inventory to use to build your item descriptions. This gives you consistent descriptions for all your items, again helping you to quickly and easily identify any item.

  1. Item Aliases

You can specify any number of aliases for items that belong to a catalog group.

  1. Item Search

Once you have cataloged your items, you can use the item catalog to quickly and easily find any item. You can search by one or more descriptive elements to quickly retrieve all items with the specific characteristics you specify.


Companies in the same industry can communicate effectively while referring to items without naming their items identically because item cataloging could provide a standard language in referring to items. For e.g. Companies that manufacture computer monitors communicate effectively (because the items they manufacture are in the computer monitor catalog group) but they do not need to name their items identically. E.g. in the manufacture of shoes, the different catalog groups could be leather shoes, synthetic rubber shoes, etc.

A detailed description of what an item is could be stored without embedding the meaning in the item number.

You can search for items by their description –

You can update the description of an item at any time with the values of the descriptive elements

You can find common existing types of items

You can provide prompt service for you customers if they dont know the names of the items but know how the items look


Oracle Metalink

Inventory User Guide


3 thoughts on “Item Catalogs Overview

  1. Item catalog is to specify detail of items to down like if you have an Item Desktop Computer and you want to specify what are the parts of these desktop computer like HDD Capacity , Processor Capacity etc. Then you can specify this as Item Catalog.

    Item Category is the Grouping of Items in above example item category would be IT Equipment etc

    above definition varies Based on your structure.

  2. I would like to know how an user can consult an catalogued item in oracle, it’s necessary to know it’s code? or oracle has another form of search like a coloquial names or an item name code?

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