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Moving to S/4HANA: Some Personal Thoughts About Controlling

Tom KingMy company is in the early stages of moving from ECC 6.0 to S/4HANA. I thought it would be interesting to give you my initial impressions of what I found out about Controlling in S/4HANA. Since we started out with ECC 6.0, we don’t have the baggage of things like classic G/L versus new G/L.

We first got access to an S/4HANA sandbox for a test drive of the system. This is an important step in the transition and has helped me get a much better understanding of how the new system works rather than reading documentation and watching training videos. What follows are my initial impressions. Hopefully, this will be useful if you are making the move, or contemplating it. 

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Explore Various Cost Objects in SAP Controlling

Ashish SampatI often get asked about difference between a Production Order and Process Order. When is it beneficial to use one over another?
As such, from controlling point of view, both objects have similar features. It is mainly on the Production Planning and Shop Floor Execution side where we see a difference. The main advantage of using Process Order is use of Process Instruction Sheet, or PI Sheet for day-to-day shop-floor activities. Whereas both the scenarios use Material Masters and Bills of Materials; Production Orders use Work Center (Machine) and Routing (sequence of operations) – Process Orders use Resource (Machine) and Recipe (sequence of operations and which component is issued during which operation). The decision on whether to go with Production Orders or Process Order would depend upon type of industry and fitment and is largely driven by the Production Planning team.

While we are on this topic of Production Orders and Process Orders, it might be beneficial to speak about other Cost Objects that are offered in Controlling.

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Why should you attend SAP Controlling 2018 conference?

Marjorie WThrough my careers as a cost accountant, accounting manager, project manager, and an education
consultant I’ve attended countless conferences on SAP FI-CO. My first experience with this particular
conference was in 2014. I was quite impressed with the roster of speakers, the breadth of the topics,
and the size of the event. It is just large enough to draw a diverse cross section of SAP CO users and
consultants and just small enough for you to be able to connect with individuals. Where else could
you chat over lunch with the legendary Janet Salmon?

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Explanation of FI Line Item Texts created by Material Ledger

Paul Material LedgerIf you use Material Ledger’s Actual Costing, then you would know that the Post Closing Step creates accounting documents depending on how the variances for the Material have been distributed. For example, a material with a price (or exchange rate) difference of $100 could be sold, scrapped, used in a production order that is complete, used in a production order that is not complete, transferred to another plant, or left in inventory. And this only refers to the differences that are created on the material itself (single-level), and not the differences that are transferred from other materials (multilevel) which have their own slew of Material Ledger postings.

 Because of this, it is easy to be overwhelmed by the volume of postings that are created by the Material Ledger’s closing entry and what they mean. Some companies choose to label the General ledger accounts appropriately to indicate what the posting is for, but if you do not understand the posting, it is easy to incorrectly label the General Ledger account. Also, you may not need a separate general ledger account for each scenario as that may lead to more General Ledger accounts than you need, and may create even more confusion.

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Why do I need to activate Profit Center Accounting in SAP S/4 1709?

IMG 0321We recently upgraded a test system from S/4 1610 to S/4 1709 and one of the interesting things that we found was that SAP recommends that the switch for activating profit center accounting (PCA) should be activated. This was a surprise because I found no mention of this in the Simplification document for 1709 or in on-line searches.

Since release ECC 5.0 clients using the new general ledger with the profit center or segment scenarios active were warned against activation of classic PCA. With the new GL scenarios profit center functionality was incorporated in the GL and the old profit center ledger 8A was not activated. In this case the classic reports in the information system for PCA would not return any results if they were executed.

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SAP S/4HANA Finance Frequently Asked Questions


Dive into this list of the top FAQ's on SAP S/4HANA Finance.

 Is merging of actuals & plan into ACDOCA versus ACDOCP? Is the planning data going to go to ACDOCA or ACDOCP?  If we copy actual to plan for each monthly forecast version, will the P table end up with 12 times the records of the A table?

Planning data will update to ACDOCP. In your copy function you would have to decide at what aggregation you updated ACDOCP (1:1 or roll-up e.g. production orders to not have quite so much data in your forecast). 

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Fundamentals of MM-FI Account Determination

AshishSeveral colleagues have asked questions about integration between Materials Management (MM) and Financial Accounting (FI) module:

- How do postings from MM flow into FI?

- How do we find out what occurs behind-the-scenes?

- How do we identify which movement types are pointing to a specific GL Account?

- Is there a way by which we can change the posting to a different General Ledger (GL) Account?

- How does one create a new movement type and assign it to a specific GL Account?

Many SAP practitioners – IT and business alike – are in similar situation and do not know where to start on MM-FI data flow and reconciliation. This blog is an attempt to clarify the fundamentals of MM-FI account determination.

Configuration transaction OBYC forms the core of SAP’s integration between the MM, FI, and Controlling (CO) modules in a traditional SAP ERP system.

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Fundamentals of MM-FI Account Determination

AshishSeveral colleagues have asked me questions about the integration between Materials Management (MM) and Financial Accounting (FI) modules:

- How do postings flow from MM into FI?

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Activity Type Post Blog Series Final Recap

TomKingOver the last seven weeks expert Tom King has shared detailed information on SAP activity types . This blog post provides a recap and link to each post in the series.

Activity Postings Part 1: Activity Types an Overview

My company began its journey with SAP back in 2007, and I was a charter member of the FICO team because of my work with product costing in our legacy world. I quickly discovered the way SAP handles costing and Controlling is different. The concepts were familiar, but the structures and processes were not. One of the first items that I ran into was the activity type.  Ah, I thought, a familiar concept!

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Activity Postings Part 2: Category 1 Activity Types and Posting

Our journey through activity type postings begins with activity type category 1 (manual entry, manual allocation).  I think of category 1 as the vanilla ice cream of posting activity. This is the most common and straightforward method to use and understand. Activity types defined with this category must be directly posted to a cost center and at the same time have a receiver cost object assigned.  Look at the definition of activity type CATEG1 below.  In this case, the actual allocation category is left blank, which means that it will be the same as the plan activity type category.  For CATEG1, that means the actual category is 1.

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Activity Postings Part 3: Category 2 Activity Types and Posting

Category 2 activity types are for indirect determination and indirect allocation.  If category 1 activity types are vanilla ice cream, category 2 activities are more like hot fudge sundaes.  There is a lot of power built in to how postings are made with these activity types.

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Activity Postings Part 4: Category 2 Activity Types and Posting – Part 2

Previously, we discovered how to automate activity type postings using the indirect activity allocation cycle and category 2 activity types.  The example chosen was to use a statistical key figure which was posted to the receiver cost centers as the means for calculating the sender activity type quantities.  This still required some manual postings for the statistical key figure, but the calculation of the activity type quantity and the actual postings were handled automatically when running the cycle.

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Activity Postings Part 5: Category 3 Activity Types and Posting

We have gone into a lot of detail on how indirect activity allocation cycles work with category 2 (indirect determination, indirect allocation) are used.  The main takeaway from category 2 type activities is that the quantity of activity posted is calculated based on information derived from the receiver cost objects.  You either don’t know or find it difficult to determine how much activity should be posted.  What if you do know how much activity should be posted, but don’t want to manually determine how to allocate the posting to other cost objects?  That is where category 3 (manual entry, indirect allocation) activity types come in.

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Activity Postings Part 6: Category 4 Activity Types and Posting

Category 4 activity types are unique in that they do not allow any sort of allocation at all.  They are manually posted like category 1 and category 3 activity types, but that is the extent of it.  The activity stays in the cost center.  You might be saying to yourself, “Why have an activity type that cannot allocate costs between cost objects?  Isn’t that the main purpose of the activity type?”

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Activity Postings Part 7: Category 5 Activity Types and Posting

We come to the end of our tour of activity type posting with category 5 (Target=actual allocation).  This one is the low-fat frozen yogurt of activity types.  It tastes great, but you don’t have to work as hard to keep a trim figure.  This works similarly to the category 2 activity type, but does not require an indirect activity allocation cycle in order to post the activity.

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2020 | Controlling Conference

Register by July 31st for only $999 Over 50% Off

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SAP Controlling Tip 100: Frequently Asked Questions

Tip 100 from 100 Things You Should Know About Controlling with SAP (2nd Edition) by John Jordan:

You can reference SAP Note 552486 for answers to frequently asked questions about Product Cost Controlling (CO-PC). Process orders provide you with extra functionality, such as phases and process instructions for process industries. 

The Online Service System (OSS) contains a database of useful information and advice on fixes for SAP system issues, consulting notes, and frequently asked questions. OSS Note 552486 contains advice on 14 SAP Controlling frequently asked questions. In this tip, we'll discuss how to access OSS Note 552486 adn we'll go over the note's first couple of questions and answers. 

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