In the first article on use cases for SAP Event Management (EM), I took you through some of the use cases for SAP Transportation Management (TM), Global Trade Services (GTS) and Supplier Network Collaboration (SNC), as well as the highly popular Track and Trace where folks simply want to know from their carriers or freight forwarders that their goods are on time. It seems simple, but SAP EM is the standard tool that SAP provides for this functionality. Now let’s take a look at a few more use cases.
Order to Cash
Several years back, in 2006, I chaired the SAP EM Influence Council for SAP where I helped gather requirements from the users of EM at the time. The number one request for additions to SAP EM was to provide an Order To Cash (OTC) visibility process. Well, six years later, SAP delivered: They never delivered a free visibility process, but they delivered a “for fee” Rapid Deployment Solution, called “Order Track and Exception Management.” I worked a little with SAP on the design, so at least I know that it covers the essentials. It’s not quite how we implement it, but in the end, it will work just fine. For more details on the scenario check out Berthold’s blog posting on SCN.
Reveal has implemented SAP EM to cover the OTC several times now, and we like to refer to it as WIMO: Where Is My Order? Simply put, it tracks the lifecycle of a sales order line from creation through payment from the customer. A typical lifecycle of order goes through order management where delivery blocks, incompletion, CR holds and status management are typically addressed. It then flows through fulfillment through outbound delivery, purchase order or production order. These we track as individual event handlers and tie them together in the SAP EM Web UI. We finally end up with the invoice and its payment, hopefully within terms. Just a note here: Track and Trace plays a part in this scenario as well. Because if we use a carrier or freight forwarder to deliver the goods, then we would expect to receive EDI 214 / 315 messages to tell us the status of the shipments, which, in turn, will become part of the WIMO visibility report. Below is an example of a custom report pulling SAP EM data to provide end-to-end visibility to the OTC process.
P.S.: the custom report was only developed because the sales reps were using a similar custom order entry screen, and they wanted the same experience for them. Elsewhere we try and stick to the standard SAP EM Web UI.
Procure to Pay
Now let’s move on to the second most widely used SAP EM use case: Procure to Pay (PTP). Let’s call it WIMPO: Where Is My PO? Again, we take the process through order management together with order confirmation (with or without changes), Supplier Advanced Ship Notice (ASN) as it relates to the inbound delivery (and any discrepancies found there), the goods receipt and ultimately invoice receipt and payment. At each step in the PTP process, we could have a supplier potentially not executing according to the order agreed to upfront. The dates, prices, products, and quantities could vary between each of these stages, and SAP EM is there to catch these variances and to notify the correct people to address the issues. Ultimately, this data should also be pulled in to your vendor scorecard so that vendors can be held accountable for their discrepancies. Below is an example we implemented for a large movie studio, and you can see that we also integrated the EDI process into the outbound PO process because there was some doubt in the POs always getting through to the supplier on time via an EDI X12 850 message.
With this solution in place, WIMPO was born, and end-to-end procurement visibility was in place. Suppliers could miss expectations, but big brother EM was watching.
So now we have all that was mentioned in Part 1 of this article, as well as monitoring for exception and status management for your OTC and PTP processes. I feel like that is plenty to mull over so I’ll continue in the third part of this blog in the near future.