Monday, March 10, 2008

SAP Modules and Solutions Overview

In the past when people were discussing SAP, the conversation very quickly boiled down to modules, for Example:

  • SAP’s courses were structured along module lines so that you would attend MM 101, 102 and 103. While at the course you would learn many things about MM, but not much about the rest of the SAP system and how MM fits into it.

  • A conversation with a SAP recruiter might go something like this:

Recruiter … “which modules do you work with?”

Candidate … “well, I have a lot of purchasing process experience”

Recruiter … “yes, but which modules do you work with?”

Candidate … “well, it’s purchasing functionality … so that would be, umm, MM, FI and CO mainly”

Recruiter … “great I have just the job for you”

Candidate … “fantastic, is it purchasing?”

Recruiter … “well it says here that they want an MM, FI and CO person and that’s you, right?”

Not necessarily! A MM, FI, CO role might include Inventory

Management (MM), Accounts Receivable (FI) and Profitability Analysis

(CO) – none of which a purchasing person is guaranteed to have

  • Many programme teams were organised along module lines, so that you would have a FI/CO, an MM and a HR team, for example. Training courses were (therefore) often prepared and delivered along module lines too. The result of this was that solutions were frequently optimised along module lines, and less often well integratred, and as for users, well, they were pretty much trained up in a module and left to get on with it post go-live. Fortunately those days are mostly passed, and more and more programmes (from design to build to training) are being organised along process lines such as:

Order to Cash (including parts of SD, FI-AR and probably TY as well)

Purchase to Pay (including MM-Purchasing and FI-AP)

Record to Report (FI-GL etc)

SAP now are moving away from describing their system as a set of modules, and now are using the term ‘solutions’, which is much better. If you visit SAP's website (as we urge you to do) you will find that they have structured their Solutions tab as Follows:

  • Financials

  • Human Resources

  • Customer Relationship Management

  • Supplier Relationship Management

  • Product Lifecycle Management

  • Supply Chain Management

  • Business Intelligence

If you’re still looking for that list of modules, here They are:

FI Financial Accounting – essentially your regulatory ‘books of record’, including

  • General ledger

  • Book close

  • Tax

  • Accounts receivable

  • Accounts payable

  • Consolidation

  • Special ledgers

CO Controlling – basically your internal cost/management accounting, including

  • Cost elements

  • Cost centres

  • Profit centres

  • Internal orders

  • Activity based costing

  • Product costing

AM Asset Management – track, value and depreciate your assets, including

  • Purchase

  • Sale

  • Depreciation

  • Tracking

PS Project Systems – manage your projects, large and small, including

  • Make to order

  • Plant shut downs (as a project)

  • Third party billing (on the back of a project)

HR Human Resources – ah yes, people, including

  • Employment history

  • Payroll

  • Training

  • Career management

  • Succession planning

PM Plant Maintenance – maintain your equipment (e.g. a machine, an oil rig, an aircraft etc), including

  • Labour

  • Material

  • Down time and outages

MM Materials Management – underpins the supply chain, including

  • Requisitions

  • Purchase orders

  • Goods receipts

  • Accounts payable

  • Inventory management

  • BOM’s

  • Master raw materials, finished goods etc

QM Quality Management – improve the quality of your goods, including

  • Planning

  • Execution

  • Inspections

  • Certificates

PP Production Planning – manages your production process, including

  • Capacity planning

  • Master production scheduling

  • Material requirements planning

  • Shop floor

SD Sales and Distribution – from order to delivery, including

  • RFQ

  • Sales orders

  • Pricing

  • Picking (and other warehouse processes)

  • Packing

  • Shipping

CA Cross Application – these lie on top of the individual modules, and include

  • WF – workflow

  • BW – business information warehouse

  • Office – for email

  • Workplace

  • Industry solutions

  • New Dimension products such as CRM, PLM, SRM, APO etc.,,

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