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Author's profile photo Terri Marquis

Fast and Furious Guide to Reporting Options with Flexible G/L

I teach several subject area for SAP.  One of my favorite is the reporting tools in the Enterprise Core Component.  I like the fact that SAP gives us numerous “canned” reports and it also give users access to the reporting tools to add their own reports.  One of my favorite tools is Report Painter / Report Writer.  User with average technical skills can develop reports with Painter. 

One question that many user ask when they take Painter training, ‘Do I need to know database and tables?’  For the most part the answer is no.  SAP does the technical structure for us behind the scences.  We just need to know the name of the reporting structure that SAP has built for us.  Once you know the reporting structure, it is fairly straightforward to use the WYSIWYG interface of Report Painter to write a report.


When I teach CA705 Report Painter or CA710 Report Writer, I universally get one question, ‘How can I write a management report?’  When I hear that question I have to do a little bit of translation.  What my users are really asking is can I get Finanace, Controlling, and Profit Center data in one report.  In addition when they say Controlling, they are  including CO allocations and secondary cost elements.  The answer to these questions can be two different outcomes.  When I hear this question, I ask my users a couple questions to determine the viability of using Report Painter or Writer for this report.

Question 1:

Are you in a system with Flexible General Ledger (New G/L)?  If they are in ECC6.0, we are on our way. If not, they need to use other alternatives.


Question 2:

Did you activate Flexible General Ledger?  In some cases companies did a technical upgade and installed ECC6.0 without converting to the Flexible General Ledger.  If the answer is yes, we are on a roll.

Question 3:

Did you activate Profit Center Accounting in Flexible General Ledger?  As amazing as you might find this question, I have had customer that acivated New G/L, put either didn’t convert PCA to the New G/L or activated it in Controlling.  If they answer yes, then we speeding ahead.

Question 4:

Did you activate real-time reconciliation between FI and CO?  If this question is also yes, then we can head for the finish line.

Now you are probably wondering why all the questions.   What I am trying to determine about their system is the Report Painter structures that are being populated in their system.  In R/3 systems, FI is in a unique structure, CO is in another structure, and PCA is in a  different structure.  Painter cannot get to all the information in one source.  In Flexible G/L, SAP gave us the ability to move PCA accounting into the FI database tables, it also built document splitting so that profit center is realtime.  First hurdle met, FI and PCA in one structure. 

The next challenge is CO.  Primary cost elements are not a problem, because they match to FI accounts.  We still need to deal with FI / CO reconcilliation and secondary cost elements. The table structure in Flexible G/L now includes cost element in the data fields.   In the Flexible G/L, SAP gave us the ability to activate Real-Time Reconciliation between FI / CO.  This has two impacts.  First CO allocations that cross organizational bounderies can now be updated in real-time in FI.  No more KALC.  It also gives us the ability to create a document in the FI table for CO transactions using secondary cost elments.  The FI document does not impact the G/L, it just gets us into the table.  Last hurdles crossed.

Once all this has been done, we can go to the FAGLFLEX table for Painter and have all our data in one structure.  We can still write CO only reports from the CCSS table.


Hopefully you now ready to begin creating your own reports with Report Painter or Report Writer.  To help you with this endeavor, SAP is offering a promotion for education classes.  If you have any questions about the promotion or course offerings, please contact SAP Education Registration.

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