Implement Service Master in SAP Sourcing / CLM Including Integration with SAP ERP
While most companies have a good overview of their direct spending, and have processes in place to drive efficiency and compliance, they tend to lack the same oversight for indirect spending. Depending on the industry, services can account for less than 50% and up to 90% (financial sector) of indirect spending. It also depends on the industry and how important it is to have the ability to structure services including support of a service master. In a SAP ERP system SAP External Service Management (MM-SRV) is an application component of SAP MM (Material Management) which supports the complete cycle of purchase requisition, order placement, acceptance of services, contract management as well as the invoice verification process.
While SAP Sourcing/CLM provides integration with SAP MM, it has less support for services. SAP Sourcing/CLM 9.0 allows to distinguish between materials and services, but it lacks support of a service master. While this is an item in the SAP Sourcing/CLM backlog bucket, it is currently not available. However, I will present one possible solution that will allow customers to solve this gap without too much overhead. Note that there are some limitations and restrictions to this workaround. These will be addressed later in this post.
Create Service Master in Sourcing
Here, we’ll use the existing material master in SAP Sourcing as the service master. To distinguish between the material and service master, add an extension field Is_Service of type Boolean.
Generally, the IDoc MATMAS05 is used to send materials from SAP ERP through PI to SAP Sourcing. The same kind of IDoc for services is called SRVMAS01. To enable the transfer of a service master to PI,you must perform the same configuration tasks that were done for materials, like adding SRVMAS to the Distribution Model (transaction BD64), Partner Profile (WE20), and so on. Next, adjust the PI configuration to create the Operation Mappings, Message Mappings, Service Interface, etc. similar to how it is for the ERP Material to ES Material, and making sure the extension field Is_Service is set to TRUE for the service master.
Use Service Master in Documents
Although adding a service master to a document might already work, some additional work is required to improve usability. First, start by changing the default value of the Add Material button to Add Material/Service. Search for the Localized Resource and enter the text at the field Value Override. When a user clicks Add Material/Service in an RFx or Master Agreement, the standard queries can be adjusted so that they do not show data where Is_Service is TRUE. Additionally, create a new query called All Services (add further queries as required for your specific business needs) for our services master. Do not forget to assign the new query to the Query Group for material selection.
SAP Sourcing distinguishes between materials and services; for example different price conditions are selected similar like in SAP ERP. Through scripting it is possible to change the item type from Material to Service in the case where a service master is added. Afterwards the application will automatically display the service price condition(s) instead of the typical PB00 condition for materials. Lastly, change (in page customization) the label from * Material to * Service in the item details.
Enable Integration with SAP ERP
SAP ERP handles services differently than materials. In the item overview, there is only an item of type D (“D” for the German word for Service: Dienstleistung) with a description and an optional plant. You can configure the unit of measure for this item. The default setting is 1 AU (Activity Unit). The price is calculated from the service item(s). Each item (of type D) can have one or many services underneath it, which can have a service master or a free text description, quantity with uom, and a price (one or multiple price conditions).
This concept allows you to group items together, for example the same kind of services could be part of multiple items, but with different prices depending if it is during normal operational hours, or during the night or weekend.
The ERP interface itself already supports a service master (used for the SAP SRM to ERP integration). The Line Item Group concept in SAP Sourcing can be used for grouping of services, which might not be ideal from a usability point of view, but requires only limited changes. As the line item group description(s) is not by default part of the XML message sent to PI, some additional work is required to get this information to PI and then map the data accordingly to create the follow-on document in SAP ERP. Note that information about the service master data ID gets mapped in PI to ensure the SAP ERP Outline Agreement has this information as well.
Things to Consider
As mentioned earlier, this solution has some limitations. For example it is designed on top of SAP Sourcing/CLM 9.0, because only this release provides an Item Type to distinguish between Material and Service. Release 9 is currently in “Ramp-up” mode and expected to be generally available in October 2012. It is already available for OnDemand customers).
Using the existing (Sourcing) Material Master for the Service Master could be a limitation, but it reduces the effort. In case additional data is required the material master might require further extension fields.
Services themselves in ERP have no associated plant; only the item (item type D) with the description can have a plant. On the other hand, in SAP Sourcing each item can have a plant which can be confusing for end users. For example, in the case multiple service items that are used in a single line item group that have their own individual plants, which one should be used? This requires some end user training to use only the same plant within a line item group for services.
Lastly, I think it is important to have the right resource(s) available to implement this as detailed knowledge of several areas like SAP ERP, PI, Sourcing and scripting is required. Please let me know what you think about this concept. Have you already done an implementation of service master in a lower release? Feel free to add some comments or contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org