This document aims at explaining steps for variant configuration in service product with integration of configurable task list.

Background:

In de-regulated utility gas industries, customer whether ‘Domestic’ or Industrial and Commercial’ in nature request works with respect to ‘Meter Works’ of different category. As the customers are distributed across geographies, the job creation and giving a quote values of the job requested by the customer in a web based portal is of utmost importance to the service provider.  The solution should be able to provide one upfront and accurate (to the extent possible) price to the customer so that customer can choose to confirm proceeding with service provider.

The solution should be able to do the following.             

  1. Customer requirement should be captured though user friendly questionnaires
  2. These questions internally derive the quote price and give customer an option to confirm the same.
  3. Upon confirmation, if the customer is a credit worthy one, system should be able to give a reference number to customer through which customer will communicate with service provider in future otherwise system should look for 100% prepayment after acceptance of the job.
  4. Customer should be able to select a appointment window based on the availability of the service engineer
  5. Customer should be able to see the status of the job given at any point of time.
  6. Once the job is completed then in case of credit worthy customers, periodic billing should happen.

The end to end scenario contains other relevant step in addition to above, however this document will focus on the requirement number 1, 2 and 3.

Detailed Solution Design:

In order to satisfy the above requirement 1,2 and 3 following solution in SAP is proposed.

  • All category of the service will be created as Service product in SAP. Service product would be a material with type KMAT.
  • All possible operation related to a category of the service will be created as master task list in SAP PM. These task lists will be configurable task list.
  • There will be one to one relationship maintained between service product and master task through transaction OISD.
  • A service notification will be created from portal once user gives the credential and answer for few questions and click on ‘Quote Price Please’.
  • SD contract will be created with customer with validity dates and relevant service product. Service notification will be created with respect to the SD contract.
  • Questions will be dynamically populated based on the business logic in portal from front end point of view however will be created as characteristics in back end SAP.
  • All relevant questions(SAP characteristics) for a category of service will be associated for a class of type 300. Each category of service will have corresponding class.
  • There will be two additional derived characteristics created for the below purpose
    • One for price combination
    • One for determination of the relevant operation from the master task list.
  • Answers to a questions which are drop down values in portal will be mapped to characteristics values in backend SAP.
  • There will be one variant table created to map the combination to a price and another variant table to identify the relevant operation(s) in service order from the master task list. All combinations for above requirement will be maintained as data in the variant table.
  • As there is no standard BAPI available to create service order with configurable service product along with characteristics values, a BDC recording is suggested.
  • Service order will be created with respect to notification with a service product which will be identified from the portal along with its characteristics.
  • Sale order is created through RRB(resource related billing) batch run(DP97) with reference to the service order with Service product and its characteristics values.
  • During sales order creation, RRB should not pass the actual cost from the service order but transfer the service product and its characteristics values. Hence during creation of the sale order, based on the variant pricing, pricing will be determined.
  • One Configuration profile is created for each service product.
  • Each configuration profile will contain two global dependencies as procedure.
    • One for deriving the price combination in sale order
    • The other for operation selection in service order from master task list.
  • Local dependencies are to be assigned to the individual operation of the master configuration task list.

Challenges from the standard SAP behavior:


Standard SAP behavior

Customized solution suggested

As there is no standard BAPI (like BAPI_ALM_ORDER_MAINTAIN) available to create service order with configurable service product along with characteristics values

A BDC recording is suggested

Once service order is created with respect to notification, the configuration values (characteristics values) cannot be changed.

It is suggested to create service order independently not with respect to Service notification which is linked to the contract.

As per standard resource related billing, cost from service order should be the basis for the sale order pricing, however here customer is already given the price in portal without creating a sale order. A simulated price is shown to the customer in portal and customer can change the answers to the question and see the change in price and then decide whichever is suitable to him.

Custom RFCs(remote function call) were suggested to read the price combination from backend and show it to customer in portal.

Regarding RRB in DIP profile and billing form as ‘fixed rate’ used service order

There was no standard methodology available which can determine the task list operation without having complicated/conditional dependencies for each and using variant table for the combinations

Innovative way to suggest with global dependency at configuration profile at service product level and simple one liner dependencies at operation level.



Steps to configure the Variant configuration model



1. Create characteristics with values and additional data(CT04)

Normal Characteristics which are directly mapped to customer requirement

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Special Characteristics one for Price determination and one for Operation selection.

Price determination

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Operation Selection(additional data is not required)

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2. Create class and assign the characteristics(CL02)

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3. Create service product and assign the class to material (MM01)

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4. Create variant tables(CU61)

For Price

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For Operation selection

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5. Maintain values in variant table for pricing key combination and key combination for task list operation selection (CU60)

For Pricing

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For Operation Selection

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6. Create configuration profile for service product (CU41)

Don’t create Config profile for Configuration task list.

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7. Maintain global dependencies for variant pricing and task list operation selection (CU01)

Pricing(Below both the dependencies are procedure)

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Operation Selection

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8. Maintain master task list and Maintain local dependencies to individual operation of master task list. (IA05)

Header

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Local Dependacy(selection condition) for 0010

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For 0020

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For 0030

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9. Maintain price for key combination(VK11)

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10. Maintain mapping between Service product to Master task list assignment(OISD)

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creating Service order (IW31)

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Only operation related above combination populated

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Cost tab

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Create billing Request (DP90) as one time or as batch DP97

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Document flow

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Sales order

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Process Flow Diagram


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Option Analysis

Option 1: Variant pricing with configurable task list

Option 2: Custom functionality for pricing and task list selection

Option 1:

Option 2:

Pros:

  • Standard SAP Functionality
  • Less master data of service product and task list master
  • Change to any existing service category is easy by changing the key combination

Pros:

  • Relatively simple by implementing BADi for selection of service product and task list operation
  • Simpler data maintenance of custom table
  • Can use standard BAPI_ALM_ORDER_MAINTAIN to create service order

Cons:

  • It is technically little complicated
  • BDC to be used for creation service order.

Cons:

  • Huge number of service product and task list master data

Conclusion:

SD Variant pricing is a standard SAP functionality and found a lot of document in various forums, however didn’t find any single document which combines the variant pricing with configurable task list. Hence this document has been prepared.

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5 Comments

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  1. Amber Naseer

    Hi Shiba,

    The document is very helpful ..Can you please attach the screen shots on the the main page as it becomes more accessible..

    Thanks

    (0) 

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