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Author's profile photo Roopa Ravikumar

Classification Standards in SAP Intelligent Asset Management


Classification Standard are represented in SAP Intelligent Asset Management in the Templates application by classes, subclasses, templates and associated Attributes and – if applicable – code lists.

A certain set of classification content is delivered with SAP IAM, i.e. classification content coming from ISO 14224 (version 2006), EN 15380 (version 2006). With SAP Asset Intelligent Network (SAP AIN) there is additionally the option to use eCl@ss classification content (version 10.1).

This blog first describes the general use of classification content in SAP IAM, and – in the second part – also introduces the use of eCl@ss classification content.

Classification Modeling

Classification Modeling is done using the Templates application in the SAP Intelligent Asset Management solution.

– Structural objects

– Classes and Subclasses

– Templates for Models, Equipment, Locations, Spare Parts, and Systems

– Attribute Groups, Attributes, Code Lists (associated with an attribute) – all are associated with a Class, a Subclass and/or a Template


Consumption of Classification objects is done in the Data Sheet section of a business object that has Subclass and/or Template assigned.

Classification objects are loaded as SAP IAM Template objects, i.e. classes, subclasses, attribute groups, attributes and – where applicable – templates. The templates can be differentiated by the object types that they can be used with, i.e. Model Template, Equipment Template, Location Template, System Template and Spare Part Template. To use an attribute in a business object it needs to be assigned to at least one attribute group which itself also needs to be assigned to at least one class, subclass, or Template.

In general, classes and subclasses are either delivered by SAP or a classification content provider. If the classification standard also contains attributes, these are also part of the delivered content. Delivered content can be re-used by customers, but it cannot be edited.

Customers (= organizations) can create own Template objects and own attribute groups, attributes and code lists. Here the organization owns its objects and can decide how they are being used, e.g. used only internally or get shared with selected connected partners (in SAP AIN).

In cases where customers create own template objects and share those with connected partners, they are also responsible for their content, e.g. if Template objects get created which are based on a classification standard not delivered by SAP, it needs to be ensured by the creator of the content that use respectively sharing in the network is allowed by the classification content owner.

Use Cases

Organizations want to classify by:

– A pre-delivered classification standard

– A pre-delivered classification standard and organization-owned templates*

– Multiple pre-delivered classification standards

– Multiple pre-delivered classification standards and organization-specific templates

– Organization-owned templates.

Note: Organization-owned can be company-specific objects, but also classification content from industry standards which are not pre-delivered by SAP and/or a classification standard provider (please refer to Note above).

Use Case Implementation

Example for a classification structure and the relationship to model and equipment

The following example explains how classification objects are delivered and get used:

1. Classes – delivered by SAP (based on an industry standard) or by a classification standard provider can be considered the top-node of the classification used in SAP Asset Intelligence Network, SAP Predictive Maintenance and Service cloud edition, SAP Predictive Maintenance and Service, on-premise edition or SAP Asset Strategy and Performance Management.

Note: A class does not have a parent object but can have multiple subclasses as child objects.

2. Subclasses – also delivered by SAP (based on an industry standard) or by a classification standard provider can be considered as the child objects of a class. It is possible to model multiple subclasses under the top-level subclass. Each child subclass will inherit attributes or attribute groups from its parent objects, that is, class and subclasses.

In the example:

– Subclass 1 (Power transformer) would inherit from Class (Transformer)

– Subclass 2 (Dry-type transformer) would inherit from Subclass 1 (Power transformer) and Class (Transformer)

3. Model Templates – usually created by manufacturers– can be child objects of a subclass or be used without a parent object. It is possible to have multiple model templates under the top-level model template. Each child model template will inherit attribute or attribute groups from its parent objects, that is, class and subclasses and model templates.

4. Equipment Templates – usually either created by manufacturers for operators or directly by operators – are used to provide equipment-specific attributes or attribute groups. You can use equipment templates as only reference for an equipment or in combination with the templates coming via a model.

Similar to the model template it is possible to have multiple equipment templates under the top-level equipment template. Each child equipment template will inherit attribute or attribute groups from its parent object, that is, equipment templates.

SAP Asset Intelligence Network and eCl@ss

eCl@ss is a cross-industry product-data standard for the classification and unique description of products and services. For more information on the company as well as the standard itself, please refer to the official eCl@ss Web pages (

SAP Asset Intelligence Network (SAP AIN) and eCl@ss have a partnership, and eCl@ss acts as a Content Provider in SAP AIN. This means that eCl@ss is a participant in the network, and eCl@ss classification objects get created by eCl@ss in their account and will be shared by eCl@ss in the network as follows.

In SAP Test and Demo system

– A subset of eCl@ss classification content will be made available for trial use to all customers in the Test and Demo system.

– Trial use of this subset of eCl@ss classification content is free for all customers in the Test and Demo system.

– NO migration option from Test and Demo system to a later use in Production system.

In SAP Production system

Sequential upload of eCl@ss classification content based on customer requests.

eCl@ss will share their classification content with customers who have an eCl@ss license.

Note: eCl@ss licensing is handled directly by eCl@ss office (contact:

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      Author's profile photo Shyam Mamidi
      Shyam Mamidi

      Very well explained. One who has some industry experience understands the importance of item and equipment classification and hierarchy or grouping. These define how well an organisation is designed.
      By creating templates by Industry standard you have eased the adoption and perhaps reducing the need for custom templates by most customers. Well done

      Author's profile photo Roopa Ravikumar
      Roopa Ravikumar
      Blog Post Author

      Thank you Shyam Mamidi for reading this blog and for the encouraging words.

      Best regards,


      Author's profile photo Oliver Mainka
      Oliver Mainka

      It is impossible to read the second graphic, and not great to read the third. Can you replace them with legible versions?

      Author's profile photo Roopa Ravikumar
      Roopa Ravikumar
      Blog Post Author

      Thank you Oliver Mainka for pointing that.  I have now replaced all the graphics. ?

      Best regards,


      Author's profile photo Jeya Shankar Murugesh
      Jeya Shankar Murugesh

      Hi Roopa , do we have a list of class and subclass delivered as standard (looking for exact numbers available currently in ACF) and how is the class library getting expanded in every release ? is that based on industry standard




      Author's profile photo Gaurav B
      Gaurav B

      Hello Roopa,

      What is the purpose/advantage of linking Model templates to back-end Class in S4 HANA in terms of a scenario, where we have an option to link the external ID within a Model Template? Does it facilitate some sync between S4 and AIN, e.g a manufacturer adds an attribute  in AIN which gets added as a characteristic to the class in S4 ?

      In equipment templates it seems important because attribute data might flow from S4 to AIN and vice versa but wanted to understand from a Model Template perspective?.


      Author's profile photo Karandeep Singh
      Karandeep Singh

      HI Gaurav,

      This synchronization of attribute values is possible with out of the box solution -AIN integration with EAM.


      Author's profile photo Deepak Pendyala
      Deepak Pendyala

      Hi Roopa,

      Its really an informative article. Helped understand some pieces of eclass component and the role it plays with the AIN. However, i have couple questions around how the integration between eclass and AIN works. We have a demo AIN tenant integrated with one of the demo S/4 systems in our landscape. We'd like to explore the integration of eclass content into our demo landscape. How can this be achieved?

      Appreciate the help.




      Author's profile photo Ramesh Rana
      Ramesh Rana


      We are currently using equipment classes and material classes in SAP ECC Plant maintenance.  We want to move to HANA Cloud extended version that uses AIN, ACL and uses ecl@ss.

      My question is that how do we use Leonardo, AIN ect and work with our existing classes from legacy ECC.  Is there a process for this?


      Ramesh Rana

      TCS EAM Lead

      Author's profile photo Karandeep Singh
      Karandeep Singh

      HI Ramesh,

      Once you onboard to AIN, you can sync your existing classes in ECC to the Templates(customer defined classes in AIN). This is possible by integrating ECC and AIN via standard Integration provided.