Your goal is to make sure that the items you purchased will arrive on time. To do so, you must make sure your suppliers acknowledge, up front, the PO sent to them.
Solutions such as:
– Supplier portal costs the company dearly and yields burden over the supplier. suppliers need to log-on to the company’s supplier-portal whenever interaction is needed.
– E-invoicing services are expensive and still force the suppliers to key-in everything twice. Supplier onboarding involves money transactions and is time-consuming.
– EDI screens out those not sophisticated-enough suppliers who do not have the required infrastructure.
– Calling suppliers by phone is time-consuming and the supplier acknowledgment could not be authenticated.
When a PO assigned to the PO-Collaboration process, is released (T-code ME9F – Message Output: Purchase Orders), an email is sent to the corresponding supplier. The mail contains:
HTML Message asking the supplier to take action along with a table describing the PO items,
The PO layout is attached to the mail
An HTML form with the list of items enabling the supplier to split lines and update delivery dates.
In most cases, the supplier approves the PO content – both quantities and delivery dates. In this case, the Confirm button should be pressed sending back to SAP the authentified supplier’s acknowledgment. Back in SAP, this reply is registered and the PO confirmation tab is filled accordingly.
Should the suppliers request to change the PO terms (quantities/delivery dates), the HTML form is to be invoked. Using the split button together with the date/quantity pickers, the request is formalized. Remarks at item level could be entered as well. Pressing the Send button, ship the request back to SAP.
The buyer will review the supplier request in the PO Collaboration Monitor. In case the request is acceptable, the data will be, yet again, registered in the PO confirmation tab.
Reverse Advance Shipping Notice (ASN)
Couple of weeks ahead of the shipping date (configured at SAP side per supplier/material), the PO Collaboration will send the supplier an email. In this email, the supplier is requested to re-confirm the delivery dates as appeared in the PO. By pressing the Confirm button, the supplier confirmation is logged into the buyer’s monitor.
We spend 20% the time and resources we had spent before PO Collaboration was installed. Nowadays, our resources (only 20%) are addressing exactly those 5% problematic POs, focusing on problem-solving only. The stunning fact is that the 80% saved resources were previously wasted on futile phone calls with suppliers and endless data typing, trying to sync back our SAP ECC system.
Some of us have started over 20 years ago with SAP R/3 4.0B. We keep pushing SAP’s state of the art technology forward.
We deeply understand the power of SAP and its huge potential for running organizations. But we also believe in simplicity and easy to implement and to use solutions.