Give Meaning to Job Names in a Process Chain for Better Tracking

  • by J Michael McNally, Independent BI Consultant
  • January 1, 2008
When you check a process chain in transaction SM37, all the jobs have the same name, so it’s difficult to differentiate among them. However, you can create a variant for your job that provides it with a unique name so that you can view or check your job easily.
Key Concept

BI business analysts and production support teams usually verify if a certain job is completed by looking it up in transaction SM37 (job overview). However, process chain technology does not offer a way to identify a job uniquely. The same basic job runs all the process chains, so your process chain is indistinguishable from all others.

Say you have a process chain that is active and runs on a schedule. When you use transaction SM37 to check on the job run status, all the jobs have the name BI_PROCESS_ LOADING. This tells you nothing about your process chain because all process chains generate the same job name after they run. You can try to identify the run by the time displayed for the entry, but this is inefficient.

Let me share with you a little-known way to overcome the meaningless job names that appear in transaction SM37. The solution is to create a job variant that you can schedule with the scheduler’s start condition, a variant of transaction SM36 that is available in all Basis systems.

My example involves using a job variant to assign the name G/L MASTER DATA to one of the BI_PROCESS_ LOADING jobs. You first obtain the technical name of your process chain. Then you create a variant for RSPROCESS. Next, delete any scheduled starts for your process chain. Finally, schedule the job. These four steps provide you with a way to check your process chains quickly before you lock them down and hand them over to production support. When you finish, confirm that the new name appears by going back to transaction SM37. This process works in SAP BW 3.5 and later, including SAP NetWeaver BI 7.0.

J Michael McNally

J. Michael McNally is an independent consultant working mainly on SAP NetWeaver BI implementations. He began working with R/3 in functional configuration in Service Management in 1996. Prior to that, he was a business process management consultant for four years where he worked on large business process data modeling and analysis studies. Earlier he spent almost a decade with Ernst & Young and PricewaterhouseCoopers as a management consultant, focusing his efforts in manufacturing, accounting, supply chain, and human resource projects.

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