SAP batch determination is a key feature of SAP software to automatically suggest a batch of materials that are to be used in a business process. For example, batch determination can be used to automatically suggest the batch of finished goods that need to be issued to a customer or raw materials that should be consumed in the production process. Manufacturing and distribution companies almost always manage their stock in batches. Hence, SAP batch determination is a mission critical functionality that they require from SAP ERP and SAP S/4HANA.
Batch is an object in SAP which is used in materials management, sales and distribution, and production planning modules. When it comes to production and planning batch plays a pivotal role. There are products which are managed and produced in batches. Their individual batches have their own characteristics. For example, expiry date. When manufactured goods have its own characteristics or properties, we can use SAP batches to manage those material stocks more efficiently.
Batch management is a concept that is used to maintain these specific properties of the batches. SAP batch determination is the process by which batches are selected from the system based on the properties of the batches.
When it comes to production and planning, SAP batch determination is used to decide which batches of the materials are going to be used or consumed with in the manufacturing process. As an example, if the materials have a specific expiry date, we might need to consume those material before times run out. So, we can use methods such as first in first out (FIFO), where the batches which were produced first will be consumed first.
Prerequisites for SAP Batch Determination
SAP batch determination process has several configurations that must be done, and there is master and transactional data which must be maintained. Before starting batch determination, we need to setup the following activities:
- Batch management needs to be setup in configuration. Batch can be made unique at material, plant, or client level. As an example, if the batch is unique at client level, two materials in the same client cannot have the same batch number.
- Batch management must be enabled in the material master. Without this master data, material will not be picked during batch determination.
- Materials must be classified. Material must be created with the classification view in the material master. Batch class need to be assigned to the material. This will be used in the batch determination process. Batch class is defined in SAP with type 023. In this batch class, we must assign the characteristics of the batches. These characteristics will be used to save the information about the batches. Later we can use this information for the batch determination process.
- Number range for the batches must be defined. Batch umber consist of ten characters. We can define internal or external number ranges for the batches.
SAP Batch Determination Configuration
There are several configurations which must be carried out to enable batch determination.
Define Condition Tables
This is first configuration that must be done. Follow the below IMG path to create condition tables.
IMG -> Logistic General -> Batch Management -> Batch Determination & Check -> Condition tables -> Define Production Order Condition Tables
There are pre-configured condition tables in SAP. We can use these for our process. Condition tables will have many fields which we can use. These fields represent how the batches are searched in the system.
Define Access Sequence
Next, we need to define the access sequence. Purpose of having an access sequence is that it allows the strategy type to read the condition tables in sequential method. Access sequence can be created by following the below IMG menu path:
SAP IMG -> Logistic General -> Batch Management -> Batch Determination & Check -> Access sequences -> Define Production Order Access sequences
There are several access sequences available in SAP by default. We can use these or create a new access sequence if required. In the access sequence we need to enter the condition table that we selected in the previous step. There can be more than one condition tables in the access sequence.
Define Strategy Type
Strategy type determined what type of conditions and criteria are used with the batch determination process. Strategy types can be defined by following the below SAP IMG path.
SAP IMG -> Logistic General -> Batch Management -> Batch Determination & Check -> Strategy types -> Define Production Order strategy types
In the strategy type we need to assign the search class, sort rule and the access sequence. Search class is used to search for batches according to the characteristics that we want. Search class is not assigned to the material. We need to create another class that will be assigned to the material. This batch class will have the characteristics of the batch and when the batch is created, those characteristic values will be populated.
Sort sequence is used to define the sorting method for each characteristic. We can select sorting methods such as ascending or descending. Sort sequence can be created by following the below IMG path.
SAP IMG -> Logistic General -> Batch Management -> Batch Determination & Check -> Define sort rules -> Create sort sequence
Define Batch Search Procedure
Batch search procedure has the method in which batches will be searched. We can define the search procedure by following the below SAP IMG path.
SAP IMG -> Logistic General -> Batch Management -> Batch Determination & Check -> Batch search procedure definition -> Define production order search procedure
Batch Search Procedure Allocation
This is the final configuration in the batch determination process. The search procedure which we created must be assigned to the movement type. When this allocation is done, when we trigger that movement, we can use the automatic batch determination for those materials with that specific movement.
Follow the below menu path for allocating the search procedure:
SAP IMG -> Logistic General -> Batch Management -> Batch Determination & Check -> Batch search procedure allocation and check activation -> Allocate IM search procedure
As an example, we can assign the search procedure that we created to movement type 261 which is the goods issue movement. When we are issuing materials to a production order, we can use the batch determination if this is activated. Like wise we can assign the search procedure to multiple movements.
Similarly, if we allocate the search procedure to movement type 311, it will allow us to use batch determination during location-to-location stock transfers. This is important function in the material management module. Similarly, when the deliveries are picked, we can use batch determination to select which batches need to be delivered.
This completes the SAP batch determination tutorial.
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