Overview of Approval Process for Shopping Carts and Purchase Orders in SAP Business ByDesign
[DISCLAIMER:Please Note: Any Image/data in this presentation/video is from SAP internal systems, sample data, or demo systems. Any resemblance to real data is purely coincidental]
The approval business option ensures that documents exceeding a defined total net value are approved by manager, such as a cost center manager, project manager, or Line Unit Manager, depending on Account Assignment
The Purchasing department is only informed about such requests after approval has been granted.
By using the Shopping cart or Purchase Order Business approval option, your buyers are guaranteed that every Shopping cart/Purchase Order is approved by the Person Responsible for the expenditure
- Business Background
- Approval Rules
- Scenario Execution
- Common Issues
- Reference Documents
- The Approvals view under “Managing My Area” Work Center enables managers to view, sort and find any tasks that require their approval.
- You can have single step or multi-step approval process
- You can define one or more approvers for a step in an approval process
- In Business ByDesign, we have the flexibility to use extension fields to add multiple conditions.
- You can also scope Skip Re-approval and automatic approval for purchasing documents.
- Apart from standard approval rules, you can define Workflow rules to get the Notification / E-Mail for respective document type.
- Once you have scoped Self-Approval feature, the buyer responsible or the creator of a purchasing document can approve the same, depending upon certain scenarios.
- A business process can require manager approval when, for example, certain thresholds are exceeded, such as Total Net value, or when an employee sends a request for Shopping Cart and so on.
- When the business process requires manager approval, the system accesses the organizational structure and searches for the manager responsible.
- For example:If the business process needs to identify a cost center manager for a shopping cart that has been created in the system, the system identifies the Requestor and search for the responsible cost center manager. The shopping cart then appears for approval in the Manager’s worklist.
- Define Employee Work Distribution Rules
- Scoping of Advanced Approval Limits
- Define Access Rights
You can select relevant questions under Business Configuration-> Scoping Questions-> Purchasing
Shopping cart approval Scoping:
Purchase Order Header and Item Level Scoping
You can flag the parameters under Business Configuration->Activities list
Parameters for purchase order item approval :
Purchase Order Approval Filter Specification:
Employee Work Distribution – Define Purchasing Approval Value Limit:
Advanced Approval Limits:
You can scope Advanced Approval Limit question in Business Configuration Scoping questions and then you can find this option in Application and User management-> Common Tasks-> Define Advanced Approval Limit
You can assign limit based on cost center and it is only applicable for purchase orders and shopping carts and not other purchasing documents (e.g supplier invoice)
Note:Once this rule is scoped, no other value limit will be considered.You have to maintain the value limit here if you have scoped this question otherwise system will not trigger the approval correctly
(CC* refers to cost center and M* refers to manager, E* refers to employee, PM* refers to project manager)
Manager of CC4-> M1
Manager of CC5-> M2
Manager of CC3-> M3
Define Access Rights:
You have to assign the relevant MMA work center view to the approver
Types of Approval Rules for Purchasing:
- Direct Approvers:The Direct Approvers rule enables you to send an approval task to an employee or employees directly as mentioned in the Approval Process Definition.
Document is submitted for approval and Person Responsible gets the business task in his Approvals view.
If two approvers are assigned in the Direct Approvers list, system sends task to two users at a time. If any one of them approves, the task gets completed.
If “All Approvals Required” is flagged, then all the approvers must approve the document
In case , if the requestor, creator, or recipient is assigned as the direct approver, and if the approval process consists only of a single step involving the same person as the direct approver, then system will skip the approval and the document will be requested.
Example: In this case, Manager is creating document and he himself is the Direct Approver. When user submits the document for approval, system determines him/her as a Manager, however no task will be created and document will be submitted and Requested.
In such case, if the same person still wants to receive the task, you have to scope Self Approval question in Business Configuration scoping questions
2. Approval by Cost Assignment:
- This rule enables you to determine an approver based on the cost assignment. Based on the account assignment, the document is either sent to the cost center manager, or the project manager for approval.
- For purchase orders, the document can also be sent to the reporting line manager if it contains stock materials(to-stock Purchase orders) or inventory items.
- For multiple items in Purchase order, system will send task to managers of all the cost assignments.
If Shopping Cart or Purchase Order is assigned to Cost center, then cost center manager has to approve the relevant Purchasing document.
If Shopping Cart or Purchase Order is assigned to Project Task, then Project Manager has to approve the relevant Purchasing document.
3.Approval by Reporting Line Unit Manager
The Approval by Reporting Line Unit Manager enables you to send an approval task to the reporting line unit manager of the Requestor / Buyer responsible.
System determines Reporting Line Unit Manager of the Requestor or the Buyer Responsible as an approver.
If the Creator, Requestor, or Recipient / Buyer Responsible and the approver are same, then these users are filtered out from the list of approvers. (If Manager is creating a shopping cart / purchase order on behalf of employee)
If the Automatic Approval checkbox is selected, no approval task is created and the purchasing document will be processed.
If the Automatic Approval checkbox is not selected, then an Unassigned Task is created.
4.Approval by Next Level Reporting Line Unit Manager
The Approval by Next Level Reporting Line Unit Manager enables you to send an approval task to the Manager of the Reporting Line Unit Manager of the Requestor / Buyer Responsible. The system first determines the line unit manager of the Requestor / Buyer Responsible and then sends an approval task to the manager of the reporting line unit manager.
5.Approval by Reporting Line Unit Manager by Value Limit
- The reporting line unit manager of the Requestor / Buyer Responsible is the approver, if their approval limit defined in the employee work distribution rule matches.
- If it exceeds the value limit, system determines higher level managers from Org Structure, based on the Approval Value Limit.
- Maintain the Employee Work Distribution Rules based on Org Structure hierarchy to determine the correct Approver.
6. Approval by Reporting Line Unit Managers up to Value Limit
This rules works in the same way as Approval by Reporting Line Unit Manager by Value Limit. Except that, task will go to all the approvers in the Org hierarchy, until it finds the manager with the specific approval Value Limit.
Advanced Approval Limit -Scenarios:
If Advanced Approval Limit is not scoped, system will follow the default rule i.e. Employee Work Distribution Rule.
Approval by all cost center managers by value limit of a project task
- This rule enables you to determine an approver based on the approval limit only if the business document is assigned to a project.
- When you create shopping cart / purchase order containing project task, system determines the cost center manager of the project task. (Responsible Unit maintained under Accounting tab)
- If the net value of the business document exceeds the approval limit of the approving manager, the system automatically determines the next eligible approver from the cost center hierarchy.
- Approval task is triggered for all the cost center managers of project task up to the value limit
Approval by Cost Center Manager by Project or Cost Center Manager Value Limit:
- If the document is assigned to project, project manager approves if the value is in the limit, else the approval limit of the managers of the cost center hierarchy of project task is compared.
- If the document is assigned to cost center, cost center manager approves if the value is in the limit, else the approval limit of higher level cost center managers is compared.
Approval by Cost Center Manager by Value Limit
Cost center manager approves if the approval limit matches or exceeds the shopping cart value. If the limit for the cost center manager is exceeded, higher level cost center manager approval limit is compared.
All Cost Center Approvers by Value Limit
- Cost center manager approves if the approval limit matches purchasing document value limit. If the limit for the cost center manager is exceeded, higher level cost center manager approval limit is compared.
- Approval task is triggered for all the cost center Managers up to the value limit.
Approval based on Purchasing Unit Manager
- This rule enables you to send an approval task to the purchasing unit manager. If there is no purchasing unit assigned, the system determines the purchasing unit of the buyer responsible
- This is applicable specifically for Purchase Orders.
Approval by All Line Managers of Recipients up to Approval Limit
- The reporting line unit managers of the employees who received the products is the approvers if their approval limits defined in employee work distribution match or exceed the purchase order value. Otherwise, higher level managers are determined until their approval limit matches or exceeds the purchase order value.
- This is applicable specifically for Purchase Orders.
- If you do not maintain the purchasing value limit in the Employee Work Distribution rule, system will determine all the line unit managers of the recipient.
- In case, if the value limit exceeds, then system will determine all the line unit managers of the recipient.
Reference Help Documents:
- Approval Rules for Purchasing
- Setting Up Approvals
- Approval Processes
- Defining Advanced Approval Limits
- Purchase Order Approvals
- Configuration: Purchase Order Approvals
- Shopping Cart Approvals – Configuration Guide
What exactly do you mean with "In Business ByDesign, we have the flexibility to use extension fields to add multiple conditions." ?
Is it possible to refer to Extension fields (created by a Key User) in the approval flow?
When you set up approval process , you have option to add conditions. Few fields are already added as standard fields for setting up conditions.
If you need to add customized conditions , you can create a custom(extension) field in the respective document and then extend this field to the approval conditions and create customized conditions as per your requirement.
Well documented, Nice Blog
Thanks for this blog. I was wondering if we can set up approval process for Purchase Requests created through Shopping Carts.
Right now, we have the option to set up approval for manual purchase requests only which can be created for to-stock items.
You can check this help document: Purchase Request Processing->Purchase Requests Processing for Purchase Request (Manual) .
Thank you for your reply Ishita Biswas