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SAP RPA : Electronic Bank Statement – Automate Customer Open Items Clearing

A. Introduction

In order to explain bank accounting in SAP, a global view presentation may be helpful to understand the different actors and interactions we have. To implement SAP treasury process, the following pre-requisites should be ensured;

  • Master data: Business partners data should be maintained with bank details
  • Master data: Bank master data must also be maintained
  • Full configuration of SAP (FBZP, OT83, OTPM, DMEE, OBMP….)

SAP treasury processes make business ensure primary interactions with partners (outgoing and incoming payments) and permits a total visibility of financial banking transactions through bank reconciliation process.

In this article, we will explain a feature that can be very useful in financial accounting: The EBS Integration with Customer Open item clearing

But before explaining how SAP allows to do Customer Open item clearing. we will first take a glance a global view of treasury processes.

Then, we will explain the aim of EBS integration (Bank reconciliation) and go to the particular case of Customer Open item clearing.

B. SAP Treasury: Global view of Automatic processes

You may know that SAP offers different treasury solutions like you can see in the figure below. In addition to manual processes, automatic processes are very useful in financial accounting. Automatic processes allow the business to do payments campaigns based on several criteria. As you can see, Business partners and cash pooling are in the center of these processes.

Incoming and outgoing payments are performed like explained on the diagram below. Supplier payments can be made based on a business calendar (condition terms, etc..)

Customer Direct Debit can also be part of your treasury processes. If you are concerned by SEPA format, SEPA Mandate can be managed in SAP. After Payments run, SAP System generates files that contain the details of cash operations.

Those files are communicated to the Bank in order to ensure Business transactions with partners. Based on the operations performed, the bank sends back files to SAP in order to do Bank movements reconciliation.

C. Electronic Bank Statement purpose

The Electronic Bank Statement Process is used to do bank reconciliation. Using Bank External transaction and mapping in SAP (OT83 Menu), the system allows the creation of bank posting related to company treasury activities. For example, in case of incoming payment, after EBS integration, the following accounting document is created automatically based on the configuration made. 

While integrating the EBS movements, the search string features can be used to :

  • Manage Assignment values to easy reconciliations
  • In case of credit cards movements (Retail business) assign Cost centers for fees posting
  • Choose a special accounting rule based on a particular Word or Mention
  • Etc…

D. EBS Integration with Customer Open Items clearing

One of the interesting features allowed by the EBS process is the ability to perform Customer Open Items clearing based on the information on the bank file (BAI, SWIFT MT940 or else..), SAP Configuration and financial accounting information.

We assume that all the EBS setting are already implemented and we will only create the necessary setting for the customer open item clearing while integrating EBS.

D.1. SAP Configuration

To be able to implement such a process, the following configuration is to apply on your system regarding the concerned external transaction

D.1.1. Create appropriate posting rule :

As you will see in the below screenshot, a second line must be added to your Posting Rule with Posting Area 2 (Subledger accounting).

In the line of Posting Area 2, you should custom the needed posting scheme.

As you can see, we had choosen the posting type 8 (Clear cred.subl.acct) to be able to clear Customer open item.

D.1.2. Assign External transaction to transaction type :

The created posting rule “AC01” with the positing area 2 must be assigned to the concerned external transaction in the appropriate transaction type.

The Standard Algorithm 001 must be indicated in the Interpretation Algorithm. This will allow the program to search the Open Item to Clear based on Amount and Reference field (XBLNR).

D.2. Process flow

In this part of this article, we will describe the global process of Open Item clearing after an EBS integration.

In fact, this diagram summarizes is what is exactly expected for this process

The following paragraphs of section C.2. describes in detail the macro process outlined above.

D.2.1. Customer Invoice:

Let’s suppose that we have two Customer Invoices with the global amount of 378 EUR (177,10 and 200,90) with the reference values 10100001 & 10100002 like below:

D.2.2. Customer Line Item Display FBL5N

With the line items display, we see that the two invoices have a red indicator (due date exceeded)

D.2.3. Electronic Bank Statement (EBS) received

Let’s assume that treasury department received a credit posting in the EBS with reference to the two invoices mentioned before (Reference 10100001 & 10100002) and for an amount of 378 EURO (177,10 + 200,90)

This means that the Customer payment have been received and we should clear the corresponding Open Items.

 D.2.4. Electronic Bank Statement (EBS) Integration

EBS Integration program can be launched like below (with reference)

After a successful run, the program will allow the creation of the following documents:

  • Bank clearing document for the Amount 378,00
  • Customer payment document with 378,00 Euro which allows open items clearing

The below screenshot shows the postings made

 D.2.5 Bank Postings after FF.5 Run

Bank clearing Document for the Amount 378,00

Customer payment document 378,00 which will clear the open items

D.2.6. Customer Line Item Display FBL5N

After launching the FBL5N with the appropriate criteria, the Customer Open Items are now displayed with a green indicator (Cleared Document).

D.2.7. Global view of the process

From an accounting point of view, the process can be shown like below:

E. Project Management

E.1. Project tasks

For a successful implementation, you should at least take into consideration the following tasks. If your bank flow is already maintained, this task will not be applicable as indicated in the figure below.

E.2. Project Plan

Depending on your project scope, the project plan will look like in the figure below. The greater the number of companies and bank accounts concerned the longer will be the plan.

F. Conclusion

Now that you;

  • have global treasury processes view
  • know how to set EBS- open items clearing
  • and have a project plan

I am sure that your financial department will soon raise a change request to automate open items clearing

2 Comments
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  • Hi Abdellah,

    Thank you for your sharing, it’s a really great blog. Based on this blog, Now I can know how to clear AR Open Item using Bank Statement. I need your help with my case in EBS.

    I have many AR open items in a customer, say 20 invoices and all these invoices have different “Reference” and “Document Number”. Currently, I’m clearing based on Document Reference.
    The customer wants to pay all these invoices in a single payment. If we ask them to write all “Reference”, maybe they will refuse and of course the length of “Note to Payee” field not enough.
    What algorithm will you use? Thank you.

    Regards,
    William