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Main differences between SAP Extended Warehouse Management embedded on SAP S/4HANA and Decentral SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA, Part 1

Introduction

When customers decide either a new implementation (New customer), replacing the existing WMS solution or extend the current SAP Extended Warehouse Management solution for new Distribution Centers, sometimes is not elementary to decide what deployment option best fits with their needs. The decision must pass through aspects that impact significantly influence the decision, such as features available, scalability, solution roadmap, High Performance, TCO reducing, Sizing, and so on.

This blog aims compare some differences between SAP Extended Warehouse Management embedded in SAP S/4HANA and Decentral SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA for On Premise edition, on latest SAP S/4HANA version 2020 in order to support this decision during the discovery phase of SAP Activate Methodology.

In order to provide a comfortable reading, I will split the content in two parts. The first one will cover the aspects regarding Integration and Master Data Distribution. And the second part will cover Features and Customizing.

Main Content

This is a real question that many customers has faced due to the different possibilities for design an Enterprise Architecture which fulfill the Business Map and may achieve the capabilities expected in order to have a feasible long term solution. Usually during the Discovery Phase of SAP Activate Methodology, this question is leverage and should be treated by the experts.

Source: SAP Activate Roadmap Viewer

 

The first version of SAP Extended Warehouse Management was released in 2005 with SCM EWM 5.0. It was a solution Decentralized, based  SCM Business Suite, which was a milestone for the new generation of WMS solution. Since 2005, SAP product team, has been releasing SAP Extended Warehouse Management in different deployment options for On premise edition (embedded and Decentral) and for Cloud edition. All the variety of solutions available, has become the selection for the best solution not so elementary for the customers.

Source: Regional Implementation Group (RIG)

 

I’d like to bring to your attention for some differences between SAP Extended Warehouse Management embedded in SAP S/4HANA and Decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA for On Premise edition. At the end, the expectation is to give elements which could support customers to take the decision in move forward with best option for SAP Extended Warehouse Management. The topics which I propose to be considered in this blog are:

  • Integration with SAP S/4HANA
  • Master Data Distribution
  • Features and capabilities (Part 2)
  • Customizing (Part 2)

NOTE: Regarding the topic Master Data Distribution there is detailed SAP Notes for Decentralized deployment which describe step by step how to create the master data distribution for each object such as Material, Customers, etc. Do not expect the description of this steps in this blog.

 

Integration with SAP S/4HANA

Looking at the big picture of deployment options, the first question which could arise is regarding the difference of integration once you have one solution embedded and the other out of the box. So, make sense thinking in a difference on integration method.

But, is there any difference on integration steps with SAP S/4HANA for both options?

Well, the first assumption is about the common core. SAP Extended Warehouse Management embedded in SAP S/4HANA and Decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA are planned to share a common Core of Warehouse Management Functions, it means that common core is planned to evolve over time with new functions in both options.

In both options, the transactional data, document types, master data are the same, and both are planned to have different technical integration features with SAP S/4HANA.

For SAP Extended Warehouse Management embedded in SAP S/4HANA, take a look on the content of SAP note 2938306   SAP S/4HANA 2020: Release information and restrictions for EWM in SAP S/4HANA, following the steps described on enclosed file “BasicSettings_EWMinS4_V01.pdf”. In this SAP Note, it’s available all the steps required to integrate S/4HANA and EWM in an embedded scenario. The transaction code Tools Integration based will guide you to create the integration. If you want more details you can read into this blog wrote in 2020 regarding this integration for 1909 version.

On the other hand, for Decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA, see the steps described on the content of Sap Note 2938308   Release information and restrictions of Decentralized EWM on SAP S/4HANA 2020, checking the enclosed file “HTG_Integration_SAP_ERP_with_decEWM_on_S41909_V2_6.pdf”.

When compared both integration steps provided within SAP notes described previously, we notice that, there are less steps and simplification procedure available by the wizard transaction code ready to execute steps required for SAP Extended Warehouse Management embedded SAP S/4HANA than Decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA. Nevertheless, the simplification steps provided by the wizard transaction code ready to execute steps, bring an intuitive customizing procedure, which integrate with SAP S/4HANA easily.

Another technical consideration which matters is regarding the solution scalability. If customer needs design an Enterprise Architecture integrating multiples SAP ERP or SAP S/4HANA to SAP Extended Warehouse Management, it’s possible using Decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA. The embedded deployment is designed to connect to one SAP ERP or SAP S/4HANA.

Downtime server of ERP system is also a relevant aspect to be reviewed. In this case, Decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA solution allows to continue the Warehouse operation for a certain time, using the documents already distributed. After restore the ERP System, the documents are synchronized by qRFC,

Master Data Distribution

The master data distribution is always from SAP ERP or SAP S/4HANA towards SAP Extended Warehouse Management, it means, the sender system is always SAP ERP and the system receiver is SAP Extended Warehouse management. The master data objects distributed from SAP ERP to SAP Extended Warehouse Management are:

  • Materials
  • Customers
  • Vendors and Carriers
  • Addresses
  • Batches
  • Class System (Characteristics, Master Class and Classification

Especially in the area of master data integration, SAP offers several integration techniques. For Decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA, the master data distribution use Standard technologies Application Link Enabling (ALE)-IDoc or the Data Replication Framework (DRF). In the IDoc settings, the sender system is always SAP ERP or SAP S/4HANA and the receiver system is always Decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA. The standard SAP ALE message type and mechanism are used for integration. SAP Extended Warehouse Management mainly provided the information which ALE message type and segments are required.

Source: Regional Implementation Group (RIG)

 

IMPORTANT: For the data distribution for the customers, vendors and carriers and addresses, there is the option to use DFR, instead ALE. In this case, the BP is replicated instead customer/vendor separately. If CVI is used and the BP is the leading object this has certain advantages and should  be considered . Check this information in SAP Note 2417298 – Integration of Business Partner with Customer and Supplier Roles

In Decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management on SAP S/4HANA, the distribution based on Core Interface Framework (CIF) is not supported. So, the transactions code CFM1 – CFM7, the activation of integration model to decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management (i.e CFM2) may cause errors on target system.

The Core Interface Framework (CIF) is still being used on master data distribution for deployment option on business Suite (SAP Extended Warehouse Management 9.0-9.5).

Source: Regional Implementation Group (RIG)

 

For the Distribution Model creation, perform transaction code BD64, the integration between source and target systems are created. Use the option ADD Message Type on botton and insert the the Model View, Sender, receiver and Message Type.

Create the Distribution Model

For the Initial data Transfer use the following transaction code:

BD10 – Material

BD12 – Vendor

BD14 – Customer

BD91 – Characteristics/Classes

BD93 – Classification

BD90 – Batches

For monitoring the messages on SAP EWM system, it’s possible by transaction code WE05 or via EWM-Monitor (/SCWM/MON), on option Tools >> Idoc. It allows to see object keys and message in one step.

All the mandatory steps for full setup master data integration is available on file “HTG_Integration_SAP_ERP_with_decEWM_on_S41909_V2_6.pdf within SAP Note 2938308   Release information and restrictions of Decentralized EWM on SAP S/4HANA 2020.

NOTE: This document attached on SAP note is primarily designed for the integration of decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management with SAP ERP. It’s possible to use it for decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management with SAP S/4HANA system, even if only SAP ERP is mentioned in the text. In cases where the integration differs between SAP ERP and SAP S/4HANA, the differences are mentioned explicitly in the text.

SAP Extended Warehouse Management embedded in SAP S/4HANA offers a simplified integration into other SAP S/4HANA applications.  No Core Interface Framework (CIF) to transfer master data to the embedded application, where SAP Extended Warehouse Management directly uses business partner, material and batch master data as well as batch classification data created in SAP S/4HANA.

  • No replication of product valuation data using transaction /SCWM/VALUATION_SET for EWM tolerance checks or split valuation. Embedded EWM accesses directly material valuation data in SAP S/4HANA.
  • No replication of accounting objects using transaction /SCWM/ACC_IMP_ERP for outbound processing to internal customers like cost centers. SAP Extended Warehouse Management embedded in SAP S/4HANA accesses directly accounting data in SAP S/4HANA.
  • No replication of WBS elements. SAP Extended Warehouse Management embedded in SAP S/4HANA accesses directly project master data in SAP S/4HANA.
  • No replication of dangerous goods, hazardous substances and phrases. Embedded EWM accesses directly PSS master data in SAP S/4HANA

I hope you have enriched you knowledge, getting more background to support your customers or  implementation project.

FIND OUT MORE!

SAP EWM Community -> https://www.sap.com/community/topics/extended-warehouse-management.html

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Please add in the comment section any additional topics you think are valuable to have included in this and future blog posts.

– Brought to you by the S/4HANA RIG

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