SAP ALE Online course for beginners

Dear friends!

I and my friend Roman would like to introduce an online SAP ALE Integration Course on Udemy.com. Course is designed for beginners and covers all areas from the very first step how to setup SAP ALE, SAP RFC, Integration, Data Filtering, Performance Management and etc. A lot of things from real life experience in a large enterprises world-wide.

Course audio is in Russian language, but we provided close captions for your convenience. 

It’s only $19,99 per course and stays with you forever. 

First 100 customer will receive 50% off with a coupon code: 
VPRV_ALE_001

We’re glad to see you here and there! Share and repost to make this world a little bit better.

Here is a link to the course: https://www.udemy.com/sap-ale-for-beginners


Easy way to mass change any field in SAP

There is an easy way to change any screen field you see on the screen. SE16N.. Joke..

We can create LSMW with the transaction we want to use to change specific field. Let’s say we want to change some field in PA30 or PP02. First of all we need to point the system to a specific record. So let’s enter exact date into begda and endda to allow system to choose exactly that record. Click on Copy button so it would fill all fields with data from the database record. Change one field you wanted to change.

And here is a trick. When you return from LSMW recording to Edit recording screen there will be a set of fields you saw on the screen. Delete all of them except that one you want to change (and have changed). It means system will change only one field, not all fields with some values from a file.

It took me 10 minutes to record this LSMW, thus it’s pretty convenient way to do mass changes.

LSMS Delete Screen Field

LSMS Delete Screen Field


SAP Query Reporting Switches

Hello.

I believe you’ve had some experience with SAP Query Reporting. It’s a powerful tool when you know how to use it and utilize its all features and functionality. It’s not just about SAP InfoSets and Ad-Hoc reports, but more about powerful tool to create flexible reports in MS Excel format.

Frequently we meet issues with Queries when there are empty cells, missed rows, double rows and etc. There is a good explanation why this happens. If you look into the code SAP generates for every InfoSet and then for every Query, there are some provide loops and unions. To manage the logic SAP uses to generate code for report there are some useful switches.

Here is an old document from SAP explaining when and how to use these switches.

SAP HR QUERY GENERATOR SWITCHES


10 Steps to reduce SAP TCO (Total Costs of Ownership)

Often I’ve heard questions like why we need SAP. Then, with the progress of the project, the question was transformed into “how would we live with this”. And after a year of torment, the question changed to “how to have it if cheaper.”

TCO – Total Cost of Ownership. It’s a financial term which answers the question “how much does this cost”, including all 15 pages agreement written in a small font.

If you do not go into details, then at first it seems that owning SAP system, it’s just the cost of licenses and consulting for implementation. And servers, support, annual maintenance, updates, testing, change management and much more. Will talk about this latter.

Today we’ll try to answer the question “how to own it cheaper”, how to reduce that SAP TCO.

Being honest, there are a lot of solutions, but there is not one single 100% true. I’ll share my thoughts on this, provide some links to curios data and you’ll decide what works for you.

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5 Efficient steps to build SAP HCM Consultant Career

I’ve seen a lot of requests on different forums how to become SAP HCM Consultant, how to start consultant’s career, where to find the first job, what salary to expect and so on. It’s really complex and complicated question that we will try to open up in this article. I assume your first question would be why you should trust me or even read. Don’t want to boast but my profile says it all. Have a look here and come back to continue if you still want to be an SAP HCM Consultant in couple years and progress quickly. I’ve been working with SAP almost 15 years. Have started as a Developer who wrote couple menus, reports and then switched to Basis guy, supporting all IT infrastructure. Today I’ve played all roles in this theater from developer to project director. I’ve seen a lot of people coming to SAP market, how they developed through their career and who they are today. I’ve taught hundreds of junior sap hcm consultants, end-users and most of them are still in the market.

So, let’s have a look at the real world and how a student can enter SAP HCM market today, where to grow, and, more important, how to grow. Only practice.

First step to becoming SAP HCM Consultant (choose)

There are literally three global areas in SAP HCM (or SAP HR they used to name it). Accounting people, running payroll, motivating people. Accounting people is about how every single person is placed in a company structure. These hr consultants do organizational management setup, personnel administration, time tracking. It’s not bad, it’s more basic, foundation stuff you need to set to continue with payroll or people development and motivation. There are no projects without SAP OM, PA, PT modules, so there will be demand always.

If you like doing the math, like programming, solving logical tasks, then payroll is all yours. Time evaluation and payroll calculation are the most difficult SAP modules in a whole SAP HCM solution. You need to know the law, legal requirements, taxes, gross wages, reporting and you’ll always keep yourself busy. Laws changes, SAP changes, so you’ll be in demand all the time. These guys are paid the most in the SAP world.

If you like talking, communicating, analyzing why people behave this or that way you’d better stick with SAP talent management package, which includes a lot of functionality: SAP Learning Solution, SAP Recruiting, SAP Performance Management, SAP Talent Management and many others.

So, make a decision today cause tomorrow you’ll not be able to change it. It takes years to become a professional only in one area mentioned above. You don’t have that much time to change career paths like cars.

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Payroll report with custom filters (11 techniques)

How would you solve a task where you need to find all employees with negative taxes? The wage type in payroll report should be shown as negative as there was a retro calculation. We don’t want to list every single person in the report, only people with negative taxes should be shown. This would cut the number of rows in the tax report we’re working on to do data adjustments.

Saying in tech language, we need to run  select * from rt where lgart = ? and betrg < 0. This trivial task to run a very simple payroll report with any custom filters on wage type values is almost impossible in SAP Payroll module.

Let’s think what we can offer to our Payroll customers and end-users.

11 techniques to build SAP payroll report with custom filter

  1. Standard wage type report. We can run the report and then filter values in ALV variant. it’s a waste of time and resources as SAP needs to go through every employee, extract all the data, bring it to us and only then we can filter. In case of millions of rows, it’s almost impossible to do in ALV screen.
  2. Create a technical payslip in PE51 transaction. It’s layout would look like CSV (Comma Separated Values) file with an employee number, wage type, period, value. We can easily download this file and convert to MS Excel. It’s a little better than the previous solution.
  3. Manually run SAP BI extractor in RSA3 transaction. The one cons here is the same as in bullet one – there is no way to filter wage type by value until you get ALV output.
  4. Use 4** payroll infotypes for reporting. These are virtual infotypes SAP creates base on Payroll Result Table. We can utilize these infotypes in SAP Query and setup filters there. It is time-consuming cause it converts cluster results to the infotype records for every single payroll period.
  5. PU12 transaction to export data out of SAP HR module. It downloads data to external TXT or CSV file which could be easily processed in Excel.
  6. DEvelop your own ABAP payroll report. Boring.
  7. Develop correction payroll schema and analyze needed wage type there. If it’s negative, save it’s value in some custom technical wage type. Then we can use standard payroll wage types report to review negative values.
  8. Develop eCATT script to run several SAP functional modules to extract and analyze data from the payroll cluster. Output data in some format like SAP spool.
  9. Call payroll BAPIs to extract data from SAP into MS Excel. This could be coded in Visual Basic to get access to SAP system. SAP logon is required and it works only on MS Windows platform.
  10. Declusterize payroll cluster (or move to HANA). Thus all payroll tables will be just plain tables which could be accessed with SE16 transaction.
  11. Run BI reports to analyze anything. BI is intended for this task.

My fantasy has ended here. I’ve not found any standard way to download a list of employees who have wage type amount value under some conditions like more, less or between.

So, is there a standard way to solve this task? Share and let’s find this out!


Just STOP using SAP HCM like a calculator or how to run SAP HCM

Today we’ll talk about you, business. You’ve already purchased the most expensive calculator in the world named SAP. Why SAP – it was your decision. Why calculator – you’ve never used it another way. I’m 100% confident you don’t use most of the SAP HCM benefits, and in 99% you even don’t know of them. You’re not curious enough, your consulting company was not experienced enough – it doesn’t matter. Here we have the result – calculator, not even MS Excel. Below I’ll tell you some functionality businesses all over the world usually don’t utilize and then lose money, confidence, the pace of changes today in the digital world. I intentionally don’t take into account so-called extended functionality like talent management, recruiting, performance management, learning solutions. Business usually pays attention to the face, frontend, interfaces than to the logic, extensibility, integration, and reporting. They don’t like SAP interfaces which were before SuccessFactors. They buy other solutions, pay much money for integration and support and blame poor SAP for all their bad.

Want to notice everything being said below is free of charge, is not licensed, you’ve already paid for this. All you need is to implement and use these SAP HCM features.

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Updating SAP systems for customers

What does updating SAP systems mean? This question is being asked very frequently when I start SAP sales meeting with a customer. When it comes to implementation of such huge information system that affects almost all business processes in a company it’s a reasonable question what to do in case of software error or law and regulations changes. You can’t fix it like fueling your car or inflating tires. It just time that would cost you money and it’s better to be prepared.

I can confirm SAP AG issues updates regularly. For main functionality, I’d say monthly or every two months. So, to prevent you from quick decisions, I can say you’ll be safe with vendor service and timely updates. There are some rules to follow to make your life easier but we’ll cover this later. I’m more in SAP HCM area so could lose some details in update processes, so don’t judge me harshly.

Types of SAP updating

Updates are different. As a rule in IT we used to think of updates as a bug fixing in software, new legal requirements. It’s some sort of a package that’s being installed into the system and everything starts working smoothly as it supposed to work. It’s semi-true for SAP. One side it’s a package that fixes and updates something, another side is a complex process that usually involves a lot of people and takes months to accomplish. Business customers wait for one-click install, IT nerds demand months of testing, acceptance and rollback plan signed by the business owners. Why? Let’s figure it out.

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Mass document printing in SAP

Here is a secret way how you can save thousands of dollars on print form development.

Printing Documents

Here is an issue. Customer needs to print hundreds of the same form documents for employees. Like notices, orders or whatever.

First of all we need to create basic SAP Query report. For example I’ve created this one that includes name and company. For real doc you’ll possible need many other fields like amount from infotype 0015, address from sixth and etc. All this you can extract from the system with standard fields within SAP Query or create additional fields in Customizing.

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SAP ABAP Quality

Life throws me interesting tasks. The other day I was thinking about ABAP code quality automation. There is a tool to control ABAP quality and it’s called ATC – ABAP Test Cockpit. Guess, we can setup system to verify ABAP code for quality in ABAP Code Inspector where we set rules for naming, code blocks, conventions, etc. We can ask the system to schedule code checks before any transport request moves forward to quality or production. The system will stop any transfer in case there are mistakes in code or even variables naming.

 

Testing ABAP Code in SAP

testing ABAP code in SAP (image owner/author is unknown)

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