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Author's profile photo Ramesh Karanam

Comparison of simplification and functionality in S/4 and ECC in procurement process

We are hearing a lot about S/4 HANA now-a–days and the interest it evoked lead me to collate and evaluate information available on S/$ HANA. During this course, I made following notes about the comparison between ECC and S/4 HANA which will give a snap shot about the simplification and the functionality in procurement process. I hope this will be useful for some enthusiasts of SAP S/4 HANA.

Functionality/Element ECC S/4
Material Master
  • Material Number length is 18 characters
  • Service Master is used for Services.
  • Material Number length 040 characters
  • MRP fields – Quota arr. Usage, SLoc MRP indicator, spec. proc. type SLoc , reorder qty and replenishment qty are not required to be switched on.
  • A new Material type ‘SERV” for service material. However, service material type “DIEN’ is also available.
Vendor Master
  • Master data is maintained separately for Vendor and Customer.
  • Only one single address
  • No integrated classification data
  • No time – dependency
  • Supplier evaluation is only on hard facts only and supplier evaluation for soft-facts using questionnaire is not available but only in SAP Supplier Life cycle management.
  • No integration to Dun &Bradstreet Information Services


  • Business partner concept is used as a replacement for Vendor and Customer Master.
  • The roles available are “000000” – Business Partner (Gen), “FLVN00” – FI Vendor and “FLVN01” – Supplier.
  • Multiple addresses are possible.
  • Multiple roles
  • Time dependency object attributes and relationships
  • Purchasing Category: Suppliers can be managed according to specific categories of goods and services.
  • Classification: Assign important characteristics to suppliers. A score card for each supplier to monitor supplier’s social responsibility compliance
  • Own questionnaire can be defined directly and evaluation requests can be created and distributed directly to appraisers.
  • Support of Dun &Bradstreet Information Services  data



Purchase Requisition
  • If no source of supply is assigned automatically by the system, Buyer needs to do this manually.
  • System proposes automatically a set of available sources of supply to facilitate and accelerate assignment of source of supply.
  • Grouping, filtering and downloading capabilities of open purchase requisitions.
Purchase Order processing
  • Search for existing POs is time –consuming, no provisioning of existing documents.
  • No prefilling of other fields based on supplier.
  • No pre-filtering of value help search results.
  • Only at the end get a list of errors that need to be corrected.
  • Dynamic prefilling and provisioning of fields based on selected supplier or material type.
  • Restricted list of available value help fields to avoid subsequent errors in purchase order.
  • Draft purchase order is created automatically when session is lost or retrieved automatically upon returning.
Output Management
  • The output management configuration is based in NAST.
  • The configuration is based on BRF+ (Business Rule Framework Plus) based on Adobe server and Adobe Forms. But NAST configuration is still supported for New documents.


Contract Management
  • Only one-time search for contract documents is possible.
  • No action can be done directly in the contract list
  • Approval information is missing
  • Notes are missing
  • All activities can be executed in one screen
  • Contract target value or target quantity update
  • Approval details, notes, business card for supplier are provided
Invoice processing
  • Inflexible search functionalities
  • Confusing visualization of Supplier invoice to detect issues
  • Administrator has to resolve business issues in case of faulty supplier invoice
  • Flexible and dynamic search capabilities
  • Defect issues in one glance
  • Directly resolve issues finish the process

Hope this information is useful for a quick grasp of the simplification features in procurement area.

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      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Nice Overview

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Good and very useful document Ramesh..expecting more such post from you.

      Author's profile photo Leonardo de Freitas
      Leonardo de Freitas


      Good to consider and update the note regarding output management that, The solution is not stable yet, less dissemination of success cases. Very restricted support for IDOCs, does not support ALE connections.

      The purpose of the framework (BRF+) managing outputs for SAP is the future, but not for this moment.

      It is good to stay with NAST for many reasons. Cost, time spending, effective SAP support and so on.

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Yes Really good comparsion. in case output management i will accept Leonardo's views..




      Author's profile photo Ronald Kuiper
      Ronald Kuiper

      Hi Ramesh,
      You know whether there are more of these comparisons. I'm looking for a Plant Maintenance (Asset Mgt) Finance, Asset Accounting, Supply Chian and Quality management and WM(EWM)?
      kind regards
      Ronald Kuiper