Sales Lead Time vs. ATP vs. CTP in AX 2012

by | Updated August 15, 2016 | Dynamics AX, Inventory, Manufacturing, Set Up

What the heck are SLT, ATP & CTP in AX 2012 and what are the differences?

There’s a piece of functionality called delivery date control inside of Dynamics AX which will propose from today’s date, when the warehouse can have product ready and shipped. Then once shipped, how long it will take to be delivered to a customer location.

There are three main methods of delivery date control:

  1. Sales Lead Time (SLT)
  2. Available-to-promise (ATP)
  3. Capable-to-promise (CTP)

I’ve done some research lately on this area and here is a high level on what I found out about these 3 delivery date control methods. Enjoy!

Sales Lead Time: SLT is how long, once the order is entered, for the product to be placed on a shipment. So in AX you can set static values in multiple areas to set a default lead time.

Here is where you can setup sales lead time and the order in which AX checks it:

  1. Trade Agreements: AR > Journals > Price/Discount > Price/Discount agreement journals.
  2. Site Specific Order Settings: Released Product Form > Action Menu > Plan Tab > Site Specific Order Settings.
  3. Default Order Settings: Released Product Form > Action Menu > Plan Tab > Default Order Settings.


Note: You setup the default sales lead time under: Accounts Received Parameters: AR > Setup > AR Parameters > Shipments tab.

Example: The Sales Lead Time is set to 2 days for product XYZ. If an order was entered on 10/13/2014 it would block off two work days for the requested ship date.

Available ship and receipt dates

Figure 1: Delivery Date Control

You will also notice that there is a field called “Transportation Days”. This field is added to calculation to let the customer service rep know how many days to add to the available ship date to get an available receipt date. So for instance in the previous example it only takes one day to get to the customer location so if the order is place on the 10/13/2014 it will be to the customer location on the 10/16/2014.

You can setup transportation days by going to: Inventory Management > Setup > Distribution > Transport.

NOTE: In some instances the time of day you enter an order on affects the lead time calculations. So for instance you can set the system up so if an order is entered on 10/13/2014 after 3 PM the 2 day lead time would actually be 3 days because it would propose 10/16/2014 as the Available Ship Date.

Summary: The Sales Lead Time will use a static value to calculated how long it takes for a product to be on a shipment (Available Ship Date) and then uses the sales lead time + transportation calendar to calculate the estimated delivery date (available receipt date).

Available-to-Promise (ATP): ATP is the amount of product that you can promise a customer based on a time fence inside of AX. The system uses a time fence, which is how many days it should look into the future among a few other settings, to see how many receipts are available and when, pertaining to the order you are entering. So for example, if there are zero on-hand for product XYZ (60 day time fence) and there is a purchase order that is expected to be delivered in 7 days, ATP would calculate the following, assuming we entered the order on 10/13/2014:

Available Ship Date: 10/20/2014 (Monday). 7 total days to get the product in-stock and on a shipment.

Available Receipt Date: 10/28/2014 – 6 “work” days for transportation.

Delivery date control

Figure 2: Delivery Date Control

A misconception with ATP is that MRP is required for use. That isn’t true, you can use ATP by without the use of MRP.

ATP also has a nice view that you can use to see what has been ordered compared to what and when product will be available.

Below there are 300 on order and on 10/20/2014 there is an expected receipt for 1000. So this view is letting you know on 10/20/2014 you could promise the full 300.


ATP View

Figure 3: ATP View from a sales line

NOTE: To display the ATP view you simply select a sales order line and select the Product and Supply button > ATP Information.

Summary: ATP is a good way to use current issues and receipts to calculate how much you can promise to customers on specific dates.

Capable-To-Promise (CTP): CTP is a manufacturing oriented delivery date control approach. The system will take the route time into account when calculating how long it will take to manufacture the products that have been ordered. So for example, you have a route that takes 24 total hours to manufacture 1 piece on a standard 8 hour work day. If a quantity of 1 goes on order, it will show the lead time to be 3 days.

NOTE: If you setup a non-manufactured product as CTP controlled, the system looks to default back to the sales lead time as CTP is not applicable.

I found a nice blog on setting up CTP if you would like further reference:

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  1. Don Tyler

    What about the component inventory “1000” that you added to the BOM for #ITEM-CTP. When did you add that inventory

  2. Jolene Werth

    Tom, quick question. We are currently using Sales Lead Time.
    When using the Sales Lead time is there a way to adjust lead time days for specific customer accounts?

  3. Brandon Carmichael

    Hello Jolene:

    Thank you for taking the time to comment on out blog.

    Regarding your question, you can use trade agreements to have customer specific lead times. Please let me know if there is anything else I can help with.


  4. Witold Adamiak


    Thanks for clear explanation of all those ‘delivery dates’ names 🙂 In our company – we are going to use CTP but we discovered a strange behavior of CTP in the following case:
    1. An item ‘Product_A’ is created having ONLY one line in BOM -> an item – ‘Material_B’ (no route is defined for Product_A) – 1 pcs of Material_B for 1 pcs of Product_A;
    2. Material_B is purchased and has lead time = 14 calendar days;
    3. Currently there are 2 pcs of Material_B on stock available;
    4. Sales Order line for 2 pcs of Product_A is created with confirmed shipment date 4 weeks ahead (longer that delivery lead time of Material_B) with CTP defined as method of checking delivery date;
    5. So far – so good – CTP allows define shipment date 4 weeks ahead as acceptable;
    6. Next sales order line for Product_A is created for 1 pcs and expected confirmed shipment date is 10 days ahead (within delivery lead time for Material_B);
    7. ATTENTION !! CTP suggests earliest available shipment date as 14 days ahead (lead time for Material_B) instead accept shipment 10 days ahead. Why I expect that? There is stock level available of Material_B (2 pcs) already on stock for delivering 1 pcs of Product_A within 10 days – and – there is enough time to buy next pcs of Material_B for delivery of 2 pcs of Product_A within 4 weeks (period longer that LT for Material_B) !
    But CTP doesn’t allow shipment date 10 days ahead !
    Do you know if MS solved that bug ? Or there is another solution for proper calculation of CTP in the situation as described above ?

    I would be glad for any advice/help

    Witold Adamiak

  5. Brandon Carmichael

    Hello Witold Adamiak,

    After talking with a couple of my colleagues, we’ve come to the conclusion we can’t answer your questions fully without doing additional research. Ultimately, we would need to look at your environment, and basically debug the situation so we could tell you with full confidence what is occurring.

    In regards to hotfixes, that’s opening Pandora’s box. We would need the environments build information just for starters. Even with this information and having all the resources at our fingertips it could take hours to days to find and test the appropriate hotfix as 90% aren’t name properly.

    I’m guessing you were hoping for a different response, so for that I will end on a message hope. I would suggest that you try reaching out to your Microsoft partner for an in-depth look or submitting the issue to an AX user group to see if someone has encountered the same issue.


  6. Rainier

    Hi Tom, I also have a question,
    10 physical reserved items to another order
    New order atp shows the stock is available
    I would expect ATP to show no stock

    Is this expected AX behaviour

  7. Brandon Carmichael

    Hello Rainier:

    Basically, the system is just looking at how much is in-stock, ignoring reservations (just because it’s reserved doesn’t mean it’s out of stock) and then using the shipping dates from the order/lines to calculate how much we can promise per SO.

    To sum it up, I would guess the system is working by design as I’m seeing the same behavior that you are claiming. If you want an official ruling, may I suggest that you open a ticket with Microsoft.


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