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Preparing for S4 EWM Fit/Gap Sessions – Activate Best Practices

The goal of this blog is to provide the consultant some pointers how to prepare for Fit/Gap sessions for S4 EWM implementations that are making use of the Best Practices.

 

  • Locating Best Practice Content:

There should be solution manager installed and you might find the best practices already uploaded in there. However, this may not always be the case.

There are different versions, depending on the country you are in or the on premise versus cloud.

https://rapid.sap.com/bp/BP_OP_ENTPR This will point to the on premise version with the different releases and countries.

https://rapid.sap.com/bp/BP_CLD_ENTPR This will point to the cloud version.

It is important to understand that cloud and on premise are very different from a content prospective and I am focusing on the on-premise version here since that seems to be more common in the market at this point.

While you can access part of the best practices, you will need a S user and login with that to get full access

 

  • What is included in the on premise version

If you access the website you will find under Supply Chain the processes using the standard EWM license but also an outbound process using transportation units and wave planning requiring the advanced license.

The most important content pieces available are the process flows and test scripts. You will also find configuration building blocks that explain you the settings in the system and can be helpful if something does not work as expected.

 

  • Preparing the system

When logging into your system, you should find preset master data as described in the test scripts. Look for EWM* business partner and materials. There are manual cutover steps required, some of these can be performed by the basis team that did the installation but more often than not I ended up doing it.

You will need to locate the “Administration Guide to Implementation of SAP S/4HANA with SAP Best Practices” for your version. For 1809 for example you would find under section “3.5.4.6 Post-activation steps for EWM scope items” the setup of the integration described.

Without these steps completed system obviously will not work.

Interestingly master data exists however no inventory is available in the system.  Check with your finance and material management counterpart to see if they are ready for the load. Look for OSS note 2483936. In the attachment you will find load files that let you execute best practice “1FU – Initial Stock Upload for Warehouse” giving you a headstart of having inventory in all the right storage types to execute the test scripts.

Note: I had an implementation that had the best practices without client 000 content installed. As a result, standard configuration that was not explicit provided in the best practice was missing. For example RF exceptions codes  had to be manually merged in. This is not recommended and discussed  nowadays under section 2.2 in the admin guide.

 

  • Preparing for the workshops

You are essentially getting a pre-defined warehouse structure that looks like the below:

 

I do believe it makes sense to educate your audience on the layout so that it is easier for them to follow the system demonstration. Also it is a good hook to explain some foundational terms like Storage Types, Warehouse Orders and Tasks and such before you jump into the process demonstrations.

For conducting the best practice demos, the test scripts will list the roles required. However due to the volume of roles involved the FIORI launchpad might look very cluttered so I would recommend strongly to create users specific to the scenario your demoing. There still will be tiles that you may not need and it can be helpful to declutter and personalize the UI.

Note: Out of the box the FIORI user are sometimes set  to display all tiles rather than just the tiles for your tab. Changing this in your own user settings will improve performance a lot.

After running through the test scripts I very quickly realized that they would not demo very well in the setting I was expected to conduct the workshops. In my opinion they are great for an implementation team to familiarize with the best practice solution and built prototypes quickly but would take too long to execute in an actual workshop. So the preparation task at hand is to actually identify relevant content from the test script and translate that into a process demo script that does not confuse the participants too much. Sometimes this might involve loading inventory into a specific storage type within the warehouse, adjusting number of materials or simply quantity used within the test steps.

 

  • Common gaps

Out of my experience there are classic gaps that I always have hit. There is for example no Customer Return process yet and support for special purchasing process variations like Stock Transport Order or Vendor Returns are missing. I tend to create these processes manually, sometimes reusing input from cloud based best practice or prior SCM EWM versions rapid deployment solution. It is important to note that the required document types are not delivered with the best practice so you have activate the respective business functions and merge missing content in.

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