The configuration and the relevant attributes to influence the determination are described in former blogs. This blog describes now the principles how a contract or a contract item is determined automatically by the application.
Service Contracts are determined in Tickets and the determination happens on item and on header. The relation is from ticket header to contract header and from ticket item to contract item.
The determination for header and item is independent from each other. This means that on the ticket item a contract item can be determined, which is not a contract item of the determined contract on the the ticket header.
The described standard behavior in this blog can be influenced by the PDI BADI to fulfill specific customer requirements (e.g. deactivate the determination on header level). A detailed description will follow in one of the next blogs.
Start of the determination
The contract (item) determination is started automatically in the ticket, if one of the relevant attributes is changed.
The attributes are:
- Customer (only if the determination strategy is configured as customer centric)
- Requested Date (only if the determination strategy is configured as date based)
- Reference Product
- Installed Base
- Installation Point
- Serial ID
- Usage Restriction
- Item Product
The determination logic selects in the first step all contracts (items) for the main selection criterion. If the system is scoped as “Customer Centric”, the main selection criterion is the customer.
If the system is scoped as “Object Centric”, the main selection criterion is the reference object (e.g. the serial number).
Additionally the status of the contract (item) is relevant. If the system is scoped as ‘Status Based’, only contracts (items) with the status ‘Active’ are relevant. If the system is scoped as ‘Date Based’, only contracts (items) with the status ‘Active’ or ‘Ready’ or ‘Obsolete’ are relevant. A contract (item) with the status ‘Blocked’ can never be determined.
With the selected contracts (items) the system creates a ranked list of determined contracts (items). This list can include one most applicable, one or more also applicable and one or more inapplicable contracts (items). A contract (item) can be inapplicable due to not matching parameters (e.g. Usage Restriction, Serial ID, Item Entitled Product).
Ranking of Contracts (Items)
For Covered Objects and Item Entitled Products it is possible to define in the contract (item) specific attributes (e.g Serial ID) or leave one or more fields empty. The meaning of an empty attribute is, that everything is covered or entitled. During the determination logic an exact match of two specific attributes (e.g. Serial ID is equal) is higher ranked as an general match. A general match means, that the content of the ticket is compared with an empty field.
Example: Contract A with empty covered objects and Contract B with Serial ID ‘SER3958’ as covered object. If in the ticket the Serial ID ‘SER3958’ is entered, than Contract B is the most applicable and Contract A is also applicable. If any other Serial ID is entered, than Contract A is the most applicable and Contract B is inapplicable.
For the ranking also the hierarchy information of customers, installation points and product categories are relevant. The hierarchy distance is analyzed and influences the ranking.
Example: Each of the three Accounts has a contract.
If in the ticket the ‘Blog Company Level 2’ is entered as customer, the contract of this customer is the most applicable, the contract of the parent customer ‘Blog Company Level 1’ is also applicable and the contract of customer ‘Blog Company Level 3’ is inapplicable.
If the system can determine one most applicable contract (item) and the contract was not assigned manually, then the contract (item) is automatically assigned to the ticket (item) and the user will be informed via an application message.
If the result of the determination leads to more than one applicable contract, the system raises a message to inform the user to select the contract manually via the OVS. In the OVS all applicable contracts (items) are displayed.
If all determined contracts (items) are inapplicable, nothing is assigned but the user will be informed via application message about the determination result.
The details of the determination result with the reasons concerning the ranking are visible in the Contract Determination Log, which will be described in one of the next blogs.