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Methods to Leverage and Optimize
SAP Business Workflow in Your SAP
PLM Environment



                                                        Eric Stajda
                                                            LeverX

               © 2008 Wellesley Information Services. All rights reserved.
What We’ll Cover …

    Introduction
•

    Thinking about SAP Workflow?
•

    Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment
•

    Reviewing basic workflow concepts
•

    Looking at available tools
•

    Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and
•
    events
    Demo: Creating a simple workflow
•

    Determining types of resources required
•

    Wrap-up
•


                                                        1
Introduction — Today’s Discussion

    Learn how to use SAP Workflow in your engineering
•
    environment to improve processes such as document
    approvals, engineering change management, and master
    data creation, and make them faster and less error-prone.
    Find out how to use SAP’s Visual Workflow Builder to
•
    create workflows that map to your organization’s
    product development processes.
    Gain insight into how much workflow functionality you
•
    can deploy out-of-the-box to support a PLM scenario.
    Learn how to locate standard business objects quickly
•
    and easily and how to put them to use in creating a PLM
    workflow.
                                                            2
Introduction — Today’s Discussion (cont.)

    Determine if and when it makes sense to custom-
•
    develop additional business objects, methods, and
    events.
    Step through a live demo of how to create PLM
•
    workflows that route documents for approval and
    expedite the creation of the material master with
    multiple views.
    Learn what type of roles you will require in your
•
    organization to build and maintain efficient PLM
    workflows.


                                                        3
What We’ll Cover …

    Introduction
•

    Thinking about SAP Workflow?
•

    Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment
•

    Reviewing basic workflow concepts
•

    Looking at available tools
•

    Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and
•
    events
    Demo: Creating a simple workflow
•

    Determining types of resources required
•

    Wrap-up
•


                                                        4
Why SAP Workflow?

    Here is my mantra about SAP Workflow
•
      It is all about getting the right information to the right people
      at the right time
    Many processes are still based on paper or email
•
      Not efficient
    SAP Workflow can take these processes and formalize
•
    them with many benefits
      Let’s take a look at some benefits




                                                                          5
Benefits of SAP Workflow

    The quality of the process is assured by pushing the
•
    relevant information together with links to related
    transactions directly to the user.
    Cycle time is reduced by pushing the process directly to
•
    the users.
      The users receive notification of a task immediately.
    The tasks are performed consistently and diligently by
•
    the users.
      The workflow system pushes all the necessary information
      needed to perform a task, including a clear description of what
      has to be done, how to do it, and the impact this task has on
      the business process for your company.

                                                                        6
Benefits of SAP Workflow (cont.)

    The process instance is transparent.
•
      At any time, any user can check how far the process has
      progressed and which stage the process has reached.
    Deadline handing ensures that users perform the tasks
•
    within the time planned.
    Intelligent reporting highlights the weaknesses of a
•
    process.
    The process definition is transparent.
•
      You can see at a glance how the process works and who will
      be selected to perform the different tasks.



                                                                   7
What We’ll Cover …

    Introduction
•

    Thinking about SAP Workflow?
•

    Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment
•

    Reviewing basic workflow concepts
•

    Looking at available tools
•

    Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and
•
    events
    Demo: Creating a simple workflow
•

    Determining types of resources required
•

    Wrap-up
•


                                                        8
SAP Workflow in the Engineering Environment

    There are many places where workflow can be used in
•
    the engineering environment
    Many processes require data being sent for review or for
•
    further processing
    Getting the data to the right person at the right time is
•
    the key
    Some example processes where workflow can be used
•
      Document reviews
      Requesting a new material number
      Engineering change management process
      BOM review
    More details on next slides
•
                                                                9
SAP Workflow in the Engineering Environment (cont.)

    Document reviews
•
      Scenario: A document is created in the SAP Document
      Management system. At a certain point, it must be sent to an
      individual for review.
      This can be accomplished by a status change or manually
      starting a given workflow. Once reviewed, the document is set
      to be released.
    Requesting a new material number
•
      Scenario: At a certain point in the design process, new
      material numbers are required.
      A workflow process could be created to allow input of
      required material data to be input into a form and then sent
      over to a department that creates the material master in the
      SAP system.
                                                                      10
SAP Workflow in the Engineering Environment (cont.)

    Engineering change management process
•
      This is the main process that usually gets workflow enabled
      during a project
      Processes are typically somewhat similar, and usually an
      industry standard
      However, each company usually has minor tweaks based on
      business requirements
    BOM review
•
      Scenario: Similar to a document review. Once the SAP BOM is
      created, you may want to send it to another individual for
      review. This is to make sure that the content and structure is
      correct.


                                                                       11
What We’ll Cover …

    Introduction
•

    Thinking about SAP Workflow?
•

    Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment
•

    Reviewing basic workflow concepts
•

    Looking at available tools
•

    Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and
•
    events
    Demo: Creating a simple workflow
•

    Determining types of resources required
•

    Wrap-up
•


                                                        12
Basic Workflow Concepts

    With SAP Business Workflow you can map business
•
    processes in the SAP system and process them
    (several times if required) under the control of the
    workflow system
    A workflow management system can process and
•
    monitor structured processes that:
      Encompass a sequence of activities
      Reoccur in the same or similar forms
      Involve several people or groups of people
      Require a lot of coordination



                                                           13
Key Elements

    Workflow definition
•
      Triggering event
      Workflow template
      Tasks
    Elements of the task
•
      Business object
      Methods
      Events
    If you understand the key elements, you will know
•
    everything necessary to build a workflow


                                                        14
What Is a Triggering Event?

    A triggering event identifies when the workflow is to
•
    start




                                                            15
What Is a Workflow Definition?

    A workflow definition is a combination of single-step
•
    tasks




                                                            16
What Are Tasks?

    Tasks are made from business objects and events
•




                                                      17
What Are Business Objects and Methods?

    Business objects and methods are used to act upon an
•
    object
      For example, the business object “DRAW” is for the document
      information record.
      In the business
      object, we have a
      method called
      “Display.” If we
      execute this method,
      it will display a
      document
      information record.



                                                                18
What We’ll Cover …

    Introduction
•

    Thinking about SAP Workflow?
•

    Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment
•

    Reviewing basic workflow concepts
•

    Looking at available tools
•

    Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and
•
    events
    Demo: Creating a simple workflow
•

    Determining types of resources required
•

    Wrap-up
•


                                                        19
Tools Available

    SAP provides standard tools for developing workflows
•
    in the system
    The main tool is the SAP Visual Workflow Builder
•
      Graphical modeler with drag-and-drop functionality




                                                           20
Tools Available (cont.)

    Any process imagined can be modeled
•
    through the workflow builder
    Standard steps that can be inserted
•
    provide a great deal of flexibility
    Some of the steps that can inserted
•
    include:
      User Decision
      Condition
      Container operation
      Event creation
      Process Control
      Loop
      Fork
                                          21
What We’ll Cover …

    Introduction
•

    Thinking about SAP Workflow?
•

    Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment
•

    Reviewing basic workflow concepts
•

    Looking at available tools
•

    Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and
•
    events
    Demo: Creating a simple workflow
•

    Determining types of resources required
•

    Wrap-up
•


                                                        22
Table of Standard Business Objects

    SAP provides you with many standard tasks, business
•
    objects, methods, and events
    The table below shows the most important business
•
    objects in SAP PLM
    Business Object   Association
    DRAW              Document management
    BUS1001           Material Master
    BUS1080           BOM
    ECM               Change Master
    BUS1003           Class
    BUS7051           Notification
                                                          23
What’s Out-of-the-Box and What’s Custom?

    For each business object, SAP provides a standard set of
•
    events and methods for acting upon the object
      Methods: Change, Display, Create, Get Details
      Events: Created, Changed
    Standard events and methods can vary by business object
•
    What is considered custom?
•
      Business objects you create
      Your own methods or events that you add to a standard business
      object
         Example: I would like to set a certain status on all documents
         associated with an engineering change master when it is set
         to the status of closed
              For this example, you would have a custom method that
              could be called through a task to set all documents
              associated to a change master to a certain status         24
Demo: What’s Out-of-the-Box and What’s Custom?




                                                 25
What We’ll Cover …

    Introduction
•

    Thinking about SAP Workflow?
•

    Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment
•

    Reviewing basic workflow concepts
•

    Looking at available tools
•

    Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and
•
    events
    Demo: Creating a simple workflow
•

    Determining types of resources required
•

    Wrap-up
•


                                                        26
Creating a Simple Workflow

    Now I’ll show you a simple demonstration of creating a
•
    workflow in the SAP system
    Workflow scenario
•
      When the status of document information record changes
      from “Draft” to “Review,” I would like to be sent a notification
      to review the document
    Elements we will use:
•
      SAP Workflow Builder
      Business object “DRAW” with method “Changed”
        Standard SAP Task
      SAP Document Management to create and change a document
      SAP Inbox
                                                                         27
Demo: Live Demo of Creating a Simple Workflow




                                                28
What We’ll Cover …

    Introduction
•

    Thinking about SAP Workflow?
•

    Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment
•

    Reviewing basic workflow concepts
•

    Looking at available tools
•

    Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and
•
    events
    Demo: Creating a simple workflow
•

    Determining types of resources required
•

    Wrap-up
•


                                                        29
Types of Resources Required

    As demonstrated, workflow can be very simple or
•
    complex
    Your resource requirements will be based on the
•
    complexity of the workflows you intend to implement
    Resource requirements could be met by one individual
•
    or many
      You may find or have a resource that can configure the
      system, build workflows, and write any of the required ABAP
    In any workflow implementation, there is usually a small
•
    amount of Basis team support required for the initial
    configuration in the system

                                                                    30
Types of Resources Required (cont.)

    Workflow Complexity                  Resources
    Simple:
    Only use standard SAP business       SAP Workflow Creator
    objects, methods, and events
    Complex:
    Use standard plus custom-developed   SAP Workflow Creator
    SAP business objects, methods, and   ABAP
    events


      After go-live, plan to have a workflow administrator to
•
      monitor the system for workflow errors, provide support
      if a task cannot be executed, or execute reporting
      requirements
                                                                31
What We’ll Cover …

    Introduction
•

    Thinking about SAP Workflow?
•

    Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment
•

    Reviewing basic workflow concepts
•

    Looking at available tools
•

    Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and
•
    events
    Demo: Creating a simple workflow
•

    Determining types of resources required
•

    Wrap-up
•


                                                        32
Resources

    Book: Alan Rickayzen, Jocelyn Dart, Carsten Brennecke,
•
    Markus Schneider, Practical Workflow for SAP (SAP
    PRESS, 2002).
      Put together by the Developers Of SAP Workflow
      #1 Book anyone interested in SAP Workflow should have
      www.sappress.com/product.cfm?account=&product=H950
    The SAP Fan Club has a very active forum on SAP
•
    Workflow
      www.sapfans.com
    SAP Business Workflow FAQ from SAP SDN
•
      www.sdn.sap.com/irj/sdn/wiki?path=/display/HOME/SAP%2bB
      usiness%2bWorkflow%2bFAQ
                                                              33
7 Key Points to Take Home
    SAP Workflow is all about getting the right information to the
•
    right people at the right time
    SAP Workflow can be used in the engineering environment
•
    to help formalize and manage the processes surrounding
    document management, engineering changes, material
    creation, and other PLM processes
    SAP provides a graphical Workflow Builder for modeling
•
    your processes
    There are many standard tasks, business objects, methods,
•
    and events that can be used
    Standard items delivered by SAP can be enhanced to
•
    facilitate additional process requirements
    As demonstrated, creating a workflow in SAP can be simple
•
    Resource requirements will be based on the complexity of
•
    the workflow you plan to implement                            34
Your Turn! Questions?




                 How to contact me:
                    Eric Stajda
              http://www.linkedin.com/in/estajda


                                                   35

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Methods To Leverage SAP Workflow

  • 1. Methods to Leverage and Optimize SAP Business Workflow in Your SAP PLM Environment Eric Stajda LeverX © 2008 Wellesley Information Services. All rights reserved.
  • 2. What We’ll Cover … Introduction • Thinking about SAP Workflow? • Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment • Reviewing basic workflow concepts • Looking at available tools • Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and • events Demo: Creating a simple workflow • Determining types of resources required • Wrap-up • 1
  • 3. Introduction — Today’s Discussion Learn how to use SAP Workflow in your engineering • environment to improve processes such as document approvals, engineering change management, and master data creation, and make them faster and less error-prone. Find out how to use SAP’s Visual Workflow Builder to • create workflows that map to your organization’s product development processes. Gain insight into how much workflow functionality you • can deploy out-of-the-box to support a PLM scenario. Learn how to locate standard business objects quickly • and easily and how to put them to use in creating a PLM workflow. 2
  • 4. Introduction — Today’s Discussion (cont.) Determine if and when it makes sense to custom- • develop additional business objects, methods, and events. Step through a live demo of how to create PLM • workflows that route documents for approval and expedite the creation of the material master with multiple views. Learn what type of roles you will require in your • organization to build and maintain efficient PLM workflows. 3
  • 5. What We’ll Cover … Introduction • Thinking about SAP Workflow? • Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment • Reviewing basic workflow concepts • Looking at available tools • Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and • events Demo: Creating a simple workflow • Determining types of resources required • Wrap-up • 4
  • 6. Why SAP Workflow? Here is my mantra about SAP Workflow • It is all about getting the right information to the right people at the right time Many processes are still based on paper or email • Not efficient SAP Workflow can take these processes and formalize • them with many benefits Let’s take a look at some benefits 5
  • 7. Benefits of SAP Workflow The quality of the process is assured by pushing the • relevant information together with links to related transactions directly to the user. Cycle time is reduced by pushing the process directly to • the users. The users receive notification of a task immediately. The tasks are performed consistently and diligently by • the users. The workflow system pushes all the necessary information needed to perform a task, including a clear description of what has to be done, how to do it, and the impact this task has on the business process for your company. 6
  • 8. Benefits of SAP Workflow (cont.) The process instance is transparent. • At any time, any user can check how far the process has progressed and which stage the process has reached. Deadline handing ensures that users perform the tasks • within the time planned. Intelligent reporting highlights the weaknesses of a • process. The process definition is transparent. • You can see at a glance how the process works and who will be selected to perform the different tasks. 7
  • 9. What We’ll Cover … Introduction • Thinking about SAP Workflow? • Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment • Reviewing basic workflow concepts • Looking at available tools • Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and • events Demo: Creating a simple workflow • Determining types of resources required • Wrap-up • 8
  • 10. SAP Workflow in the Engineering Environment There are many places where workflow can be used in • the engineering environment Many processes require data being sent for review or for • further processing Getting the data to the right person at the right time is • the key Some example processes where workflow can be used • Document reviews Requesting a new material number Engineering change management process BOM review More details on next slides • 9
  • 11. SAP Workflow in the Engineering Environment (cont.) Document reviews • Scenario: A document is created in the SAP Document Management system. At a certain point, it must be sent to an individual for review. This can be accomplished by a status change or manually starting a given workflow. Once reviewed, the document is set to be released. Requesting a new material number • Scenario: At a certain point in the design process, new material numbers are required. A workflow process could be created to allow input of required material data to be input into a form and then sent over to a department that creates the material master in the SAP system. 10
  • 12. SAP Workflow in the Engineering Environment (cont.) Engineering change management process • This is the main process that usually gets workflow enabled during a project Processes are typically somewhat similar, and usually an industry standard However, each company usually has minor tweaks based on business requirements BOM review • Scenario: Similar to a document review. Once the SAP BOM is created, you may want to send it to another individual for review. This is to make sure that the content and structure is correct. 11
  • 13. What We’ll Cover … Introduction • Thinking about SAP Workflow? • Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment • Reviewing basic workflow concepts • Looking at available tools • Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and • events Demo: Creating a simple workflow • Determining types of resources required • Wrap-up • 12
  • 14. Basic Workflow Concepts With SAP Business Workflow you can map business • processes in the SAP system and process them (several times if required) under the control of the workflow system A workflow management system can process and • monitor structured processes that: Encompass a sequence of activities Reoccur in the same or similar forms Involve several people or groups of people Require a lot of coordination 13
  • 15. Key Elements Workflow definition • Triggering event Workflow template Tasks Elements of the task • Business object Methods Events If you understand the key elements, you will know • everything necessary to build a workflow 14
  • 16. What Is a Triggering Event? A triggering event identifies when the workflow is to • start 15
  • 17. What Is a Workflow Definition? A workflow definition is a combination of single-step • tasks 16
  • 18. What Are Tasks? Tasks are made from business objects and events • 17
  • 19. What Are Business Objects and Methods? Business objects and methods are used to act upon an • object For example, the business object “DRAW” is for the document information record. In the business object, we have a method called “Display.” If we execute this method, it will display a document information record. 18
  • 20. What We’ll Cover … Introduction • Thinking about SAP Workflow? • Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment • Reviewing basic workflow concepts • Looking at available tools • Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and • events Demo: Creating a simple workflow • Determining types of resources required • Wrap-up • 19
  • 21. Tools Available SAP provides standard tools for developing workflows • in the system The main tool is the SAP Visual Workflow Builder • Graphical modeler with drag-and-drop functionality 20
  • 22. Tools Available (cont.) Any process imagined can be modeled • through the workflow builder Standard steps that can be inserted • provide a great deal of flexibility Some of the steps that can inserted • include: User Decision Condition Container operation Event creation Process Control Loop Fork 21
  • 23. What We’ll Cover … Introduction • Thinking about SAP Workflow? • Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment • Reviewing basic workflow concepts • Looking at available tools • Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and • events Demo: Creating a simple workflow • Determining types of resources required • Wrap-up • 22
  • 24. Table of Standard Business Objects SAP provides you with many standard tasks, business • objects, methods, and events The table below shows the most important business • objects in SAP PLM Business Object Association DRAW Document management BUS1001 Material Master BUS1080 BOM ECM Change Master BUS1003 Class BUS7051 Notification 23
  • 25. What’s Out-of-the-Box and What’s Custom? For each business object, SAP provides a standard set of • events and methods for acting upon the object Methods: Change, Display, Create, Get Details Events: Created, Changed Standard events and methods can vary by business object • What is considered custom? • Business objects you create Your own methods or events that you add to a standard business object Example: I would like to set a certain status on all documents associated with an engineering change master when it is set to the status of closed For this example, you would have a custom method that could be called through a task to set all documents associated to a change master to a certain status 24
  • 26. Demo: What’s Out-of-the-Box and What’s Custom? 25
  • 27. What We’ll Cover … Introduction • Thinking about SAP Workflow? • Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment • Reviewing basic workflow concepts • Looking at available tools • Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and • events Demo: Creating a simple workflow • Determining types of resources required • Wrap-up • 26
  • 28. Creating a Simple Workflow Now I’ll show you a simple demonstration of creating a • workflow in the SAP system Workflow scenario • When the status of document information record changes from “Draft” to “Review,” I would like to be sent a notification to review the document Elements we will use: • SAP Workflow Builder Business object “DRAW” with method “Changed” Standard SAP Task SAP Document Management to create and change a document SAP Inbox 27
  • 29. Demo: Live Demo of Creating a Simple Workflow 28
  • 30. What We’ll Cover … Introduction • Thinking about SAP Workflow? • Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment • Reviewing basic workflow concepts • Looking at available tools • Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and • events Demo: Creating a simple workflow • Determining types of resources required • Wrap-up • 29
  • 31. Types of Resources Required As demonstrated, workflow can be very simple or • complex Your resource requirements will be based on the • complexity of the workflows you intend to implement Resource requirements could be met by one individual • or many You may find or have a resource that can configure the system, build workflows, and write any of the required ABAP In any workflow implementation, there is usually a small • amount of Basis team support required for the initial configuration in the system 30
  • 32. Types of Resources Required (cont.) Workflow Complexity Resources Simple: Only use standard SAP business SAP Workflow Creator objects, methods, and events Complex: Use standard plus custom-developed SAP Workflow Creator SAP business objects, methods, and ABAP events After go-live, plan to have a workflow administrator to • monitor the system for workflow errors, provide support if a task cannot be executed, or execute reporting requirements 31
  • 33. What We’ll Cover … Introduction • Thinking about SAP Workflow? • Using SAP Workflow in the engineering environment • Reviewing basic workflow concepts • Looking at available tools • Comparing out-of-the-box and custom methods and • events Demo: Creating a simple workflow • Determining types of resources required • Wrap-up • 32
  • 34. Resources Book: Alan Rickayzen, Jocelyn Dart, Carsten Brennecke, • Markus Schneider, Practical Workflow for SAP (SAP PRESS, 2002). Put together by the Developers Of SAP Workflow #1 Book anyone interested in SAP Workflow should have www.sappress.com/product.cfm?account=&product=H950 The SAP Fan Club has a very active forum on SAP • Workflow www.sapfans.com SAP Business Workflow FAQ from SAP SDN • www.sdn.sap.com/irj/sdn/wiki?path=/display/HOME/SAP%2bB usiness%2bWorkflow%2bFAQ 33
  • 35. 7 Key Points to Take Home SAP Workflow is all about getting the right information to the • right people at the right time SAP Workflow can be used in the engineering environment • to help formalize and manage the processes surrounding document management, engineering changes, material creation, and other PLM processes SAP provides a graphical Workflow Builder for modeling • your processes There are many standard tasks, business objects, methods, • and events that can be used Standard items delivered by SAP can be enhanced to • facilitate additional process requirements As demonstrated, creating a workflow in SAP can be simple • Resource requirements will be based on the complexity of • the workflow you plan to implement 34
  • 36. Your Turn! Questions? How to contact me: Eric Stajda http://www.linkedin.com/in/estajda 35