Introduction

Quite regular there is the question coming up:

– Can I share/exchange data via XML in SAP EHS Management?

– Can I share/exchange data using XML regarding Safety Data Sheets

In theory answer is: Yes (but with some but)

But you need methods etc. to do so and there is no international standard available.

E.G.: http://www.sdscomxml.eu/ as well as http://www.sdscomxml.eu/english/details/

discuss the sharing of Safety Data Sheet data using XML.


The same on: http://www.ilpi.com/msds/faq/partc.html#xml

or http://www.denix.osd.mil/shf/upload/Initiative-to-Develop-Material-Safety-Data-Sheet-MSDS-XML-Standard.pdf

or this nice “White paper”: http://www.msdsmart.com/MSDSmart%20White%20Paper.pdf

XML is used as well in context of:

IUCLID interface to SAP EHS Management (as part of SAP Product and Reach Compliance Suite)

XML data can be used as well in the context of Open Content Connector.

http://www.consolut.com/en/s/sap-ides-access/d/s/doc/YY-EHS_MD_300_10

You can create XML data streams using SAP standard methods; no problem; You can link SAP ERP to SAP PI/XI and getting an XML file via SAP PI/XI. No problem.

But why is this so “problematic” in context of Safety Data Sheet?

First we need to understand SAP EHS Management approach to create a “Safety Data Sheet”. Any body knows the answer: this is done using a WWI layout together with a generation variant. The result is a WWI report (which is a RTF file). This type of document can not be used “direct” as the data sharing via XML is only possible if the XML data is valid regarding a Schema.

But is there really no option to generate the report in such a way that a “XML” document is generated which is valid regarding a Schema? Answer might be: yes there might be an option.

With EnhPack 3 the busines function OPS_EHS_CI_1 is delivered in the area of EHS. Here it is stated:

The Business Add-In BADI_ESS_REPORT_GEN enables you to use an individual implementation to generate, display, and print reports without using WWI.

I believe this option can be used to get an Safety Data Sheet as XML data stream. But there is no “default” implementation available so therefore you have to do it by your own.

What are other options? Answer: the use of an own developped output variant. Here you can select the data you want and the convert the data in such a way that you will get a XML data stream.

This is clearly a challenge as you need to develop something which works as like WWI (collect the data etc.) but it is a clear option.

As OCC is implemented as an “UserExit” (Secondary Data Determination) it is clear that you can try to develop something to support the other direction as well. That means using an XML stream and then instering/updating/deleting data in SAP EHS Management.

The use of XML to share data will clearly be the future trend. Let us hope that SAP will support us in the future with some “default” implementations or provide additional tools for data sharing.

PS:

May be check as well: these function modules (which are only available under several circumstances):

/TDAG/CP_IM56_FILE_PREPROCESS CP: Preprocessing for REACh XML file
/TDAG/CP_IM56_MAP_SAVE CP: Map and Save Exit for REACh XML file
/TDAG/CP_IM56_PROCESS CP: Process REACh XML file

and e.g.

http://scn.sap.com/thread/3184623

http://scn.sap.com/thread/1840872

http://scn.sap.com/thread/3197207

http://scn.sap.com/thread/1330377

http://scn.sap.com/thread/3341078

http://scn.sap.com/community/chemicals/blog/2012/10/18/sap-product-compliance-managers-summit

http://scn.sap.com/thread/2132777




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5 Comments

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  1. Mark Pfister

    Great write up Christoph!

    Just as a thought:

    It would be very nice to see an MSDS that is made out of an XML and then uses an XMLT to display the data in a readable and “good locking” way.

    I wish the big companies would realize how much work they could save if they would create MSDS that way – greatly reducing the amount of time needed to re-enter the data of bought raw materials / semi finished goods into their system.

    Maybe the ESComXML implementations will show the customers that it can be done to distribute EH&S data in an automated and machine readable way….

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    1. Christoph Bergemann Post author

      Dear Mark

      don’t be so/to optimistic.  In context of SAP EHS interfaces “come” and “go”; e.g. IUCLID interface has been discussed very often; very rarely it is used (according to my knowlegde) in real life.

      As stated

      here: http:///www.cefic.org/Documents/IndustrySupport/REACH-Implementation/20101001-ESComXMLsummary.pdf

      http://echa.europa.eu/documents/10162/19081173/enes5_presentation_8_en.pdf

      (sorry only available as german version) it is obvious that only “ES” is shared (exposure scenario); and we are talking only about European region in this context

      May be as well this could be of interest: https://www.wko.at/Content.Node/Service/Umwelt-und-Energie/Chemie/EU-Chemie—REACH/REACHeSDB_12-10-2012_Stuerznickel.pd…

      or

      SDScom XML – SDS and more

      I am only aware of this “german” standard to share Safety Data via XML:

      Vorherige Vorgehensweise der GISBAU-SDB-Schnittstelle — GISBAU

      and it is a branch specific solution

      Main issue in the communication between the companies: the use of the “phrases” and the “structures” of Safety data sheet. Using XML you get clear better structured documents

      In any case: even if XMl might be used as standard to share document data in most you need to map content to your EHS structure

      An example of use of XML to generate safety data sheet is shown here: Download – SDS and more

      E.g. IMDS docummunicaiotn via XML has discussed as well very often:

      IMDS Customer and Supplier Collaboration – SAP Product and REACH Compliance – SAP Library

      C.B.

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      1. Mark Pfister

        Hello Christoph,

        I recently participated in the ESComXML Solution Acceptance Test from SAP covering the outbound and inbound process of the XML files for the Annex of the SDS (eSDS).

        SAP has demonstrated that  the technical problems (for example ESComXML Data contains exactly the same data as the WWI Report Data ) can be solved quite nicely.

        The problem – from my viewpoint – is not a technical one – at least not one that can not be solved 😉 .

        It is an organizational problem to come up with a set definition of phrases that are allowed to be used, and the definition of the XML structure (XSD).

        And last but not least you have the “chicken-and-egg” problem:

        If no one creates SDS data in XML files – then no one will create processes and software to import SDS XML data. And if no one can import SDS XML data then no one will create SDS XML data…

        It is going to be interesting to see if the ESComXML will be a success. But I think we’ll habe to wait around 5 years to make that call.

        As far as I know the SDScomXML is not covered at all by SAP and to my knowledge there are no plans to do so.

        SAP only supports (from ERP 6.0 EhP07 SP08) ESComXML.

        I had a look at the SDScom XML pages and what I am missing there are some big chemical companies participating…

        Kind regards

        Mark

        If you are interested I could share some more details about EScomXML..

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        1. Christoph Bergemann Post author

          Dear Mark

          many thanks for your feedback. I really appreciate. Quite helpful. I just foudn this file in internet:

          http://help.sap.com/saphelpiis_EHS_ESCOM/EHS_Data_Mapping_for_ESComXML_Files.pdf

          Quite interesting.

          If possible: please generate a document in which you explain the interface (in/out).

          Pay attention: your statement: SAP only supports (from ERP 6.0 EhP07 SP08) ESComXML.

          is not “100 %” correct. I found the corresponding OSS note. This note clearly indicated that SAP did “downgrade” to lower SAP releases as well (and this is quite normal as SAP is trying to support any customer if legal demand is coming up)

          I found these links on top (there should be english version available as well)

          https://www.consolut.com/s/sap-ides-zugriff/d/e/doc/YX-EHS_ESC_PREREQ_SHIP

          https://www.consolut.com/s/sap-ides-zugriff/d/e/doc/YX-EHS_ESC_PREREQ_GEN

          https://www.consolut.com/s/sap-ides-zugriff/d/e/doc/YX-EHS_ESC_SHIP

          Regarding most of your statements: I can confirm (It is an organizational problem to come up with a set definition of phrases that are allowed to be used, and the definition of the XML structure (XSD).)

          As you have particitated in the tests: can you use “passive phrase libraries” tomake sure that “your” phrases “maps” to the legal phrases (if needed).?

          C.B.

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    2. Christoph Bergemann Post author

      Dear Mark

      e.g. check: EHS – send specification data to XI in an xml

      MSDS output XML

      The main question is “how to manage the reports”? In CG54/CG50 you need to manage them based on “WWI” code. I have not really have had the chance to follow the discussion regarding SDScom XML. I know that discussions is there (and may be there might be still some support by SAP as the interest is quite “high”). But in my opinion the “only” chance tis: you need to generate two reports which should be in “sync” regarding the content. One based on WWI; second based on XML.

      What are the “issues”?

      a.) if you use ALE with XI/PI this is a “direct” communicaiotn without the chance to use a “version” for the report; only if you would start XI/PI process in “Cg54” (with released report) this might help. Luckily you can distribute released reports via ALE and therefore you can try to make a link SAP ERP => XI/PI => external system (and the other way around might be possible as well).

      May be somebody different does know current status if SDScomXMl in SAP

      C.B.

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