Automate CO Data Loads with BATCHMAN

  • by Darshan Shah, Platinum Solutions Consultant, itelligence Consulting
  • May 15, 2005
An SAP R/3 Enterprise functionality called BATCHMAN enables the easy upload of selective CO data, including activity rates and statistical key figures for allocations and reporting.
Key Concept

Most SAP CO implementations need CO data periodically entered in SAP R/3. That could be loading the activity prices for use in calculation of standard costs or statistical key figure values by cost centers for use in allocations. Usually this data is stored in Microsoft Excel spreadsheets and manually entered in CO by users. Sometimes this data is entered into R/3 by custom programs or the Legacy System Migration Workbench (LSMW). Transaction BATCHMAN puts the control of these data loads in the hands of the controlling department by providing an efficient user interface.

SAP R/3 Enterprise has a standard functionality, BATCHMAN, that allows you to automate some of your data loads to CO using Business Application Programming Interface (BAPI) technology. BATCHMAN is a front-end transaction to a BAPI that makes the BAPI easier to configure and use for CO data loads. You use the R/3-delivered BAPIs in combination with Business Add-Ins (BAdIs), which take care of the user interface and message handling. BATCHMAN eliminates the need to write custom ABAP code or to use the Legacy System Migration Workbench (LSMW) to load monthly data.

BATCHMAN is a built-in transaction of R/3 Enterprise Release 4.7 and is not related to the third-party software BatchMan, which is used for job scheduling.

I'll show you how easy it is to set up BATCHMAN, including undocumented tips, using the example of loading statistical key figure values to cost centers, which can then be used for the reporting and allocation purposes.

Let me first explain the relationship among BAPIs, BadIs, and BATCHMAN. BAPIs are a standard R/3 interface designed to perform specific business tasks. They are stored as function modules in the Function Builder of ABAP Workbench. BAdIs enable you to distinguish between enhancements that can have no more than one implementation and those that can be actively used by any number of customers at the same time. BATCHMAN is a standard R/3 transaction that depicts a front-end screen for data transfer to CO. The BAdI EXT_CO_ACTUAL_DATA must be implemented to use BATCHMAN. If it is not implemented, data is not transferred. Depending on the CO transaction, the BAdI implementation transfers the uploaded data to the output tables of a BAPI. In turn, the relevant BAPI posts the data to CO tables.

Darshan Shah

Darshan Shah is a platinum solutions consultant with itelligence Consulting. itelligence is a leading global mid-market SAP provider that offers a full scope of SAP services, including SAP consulting, licensing, managed hosting, customer support, and education. It is one of only 12 consulting firms to earn SAP Global Partner status and one of only six to earn SAP Global Hosting Partner status. With an MBA degree in finance, Darshan has managed and implemented several SAP projects over the last nine years in North America and Asia. He has extensive experience in designing and implementing solutions in conjunction with SAP. He is skilled in helping clients to make strategic decisions for overall ERP implementations.

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