New and noteworthy for SAP Business Network Material Traceability – Q2 & Q3 2023
This is the second of a series of blog posts giving more insights into the latest releases of SAP Business Network Material Traceability. If you’d first like a brief introduction to our solution, read What is Material Traceability? by Mark Averskog.
First: Upgrades to the Define Destination URLs app
Since November 2022, Material Traceability administrators have been able to define destination URLs and decide from which product batches or serialized products you can navigate to these URLs. The user-defined destination URL can be a direct link to the user interface of an external app that provides extra information. It could be another Material Traceability app, an app from another SAP solution, or a non-SAP app or website. You just need URL templates for the target system. For example, you can find URL templates for SAP Business Network Global Track and Trace here.
After a URL is configured for a product batch or serialized product, the Navigate to button on the product details page becomes active.
The upgrades to the Define Destination URLs app we introduced in Q2 make the URL-defining process more flexible and less error-prone. Our users can now use their own user-defined properties, in addition to SAP-defined attributes, as URL parameters. So, if they need to use something else as a URL parameter, they just create another property in the Define Properties app. There is now also a validation check in place.
The auxiliary conditions specify for which product batches or serialized products the navigation URL will appear. To make it easier to set these, there is now a drop-down menu with all known attributes and properties.
A video introduction to the Define Destination URLs app:
Second: Getting ready for Catena-X
We are continuing our efforts to get ready to support the vision of the Catena-X Automotive Network to offer: “the first open and collaborative data space for the automotive industry to boost business processes using data driven value chains” (https://catena-x.net/en/vision). (I’ve already talked about what we got up to last year to meet this goal in another post.)
In the last few months, we have released three new features relevant to Catena-X.
The Catena-X Identifier (CatenaXId) is the UUID specific to a serial or batch number in the Catena-X network. We needed to make it possible to map each unique event in Material Traceability to a unique CatenaXId. Since each Material Traceability event is identified by a unique set of key attributes, that meant mapping the key attributes of an event to an alternative identifier. So now the CatenaXId can be shown on the UI of the Material Traceability apps, included in our APIs, and integrated into the backend.
(If you’re asking: Wait, what are key attributes? Actually, what do you mean by “event”? Then read my earlier post.)
Furthermore, to identify and collaborate with the relevant Catena-X Business Partner within the Catena-X Network, we introduced the Catena-X BP ID for vendors and customers.
So, our users can now map the key attributes of a Material Traceability event to an alternative identifier and then search for product batches or serialized products with that alternative identifier as a filter. This makes it quicker and easier to identify an event. This feature can also be used in contexts other than the Catena-X Automotive Network.
Participating in the Catena-X network
For the Catena-X Automotive Network to achieve its aims, loads and loads of different companies are going to need to set up Material Traceability in a way that allows them to use the solution in the Catena-X network. We have made it possible for this to happen with only a slight variation to our standard setup procedure for network participants.
Customer Product Number
In the automotive industry, the customer product number (customerProductId) is essential for accurate communication between suppliers and customers. By adding customerProductId as an optional attribute in deliver events, our users can now see their customer’s product number in the Material Traceability apps.
Third: Improving user experience by implementing personalization features
SAP is setting a new standard by offering a personalized, responsive, and simple user experience (ref). In Material Traceability, we make personalization features available to our users. In the last few months, we’ve made it possible for our users to save their customized table settings as a view and to adapt the product details screens in our apps.
Want to know more?
If you have any questions specific to Catena-X, you can contact Janina Reintjes.
Did you miss our updates for Q1 2023? Then read Mark’s post.
And… subscribe to our What’s New to stay up-to-date with new features in Material Traceability!