Effectively Manage Your Customer Service Business Function by Using SAP’s Integrated Service Order Functionality

  • by Muralidharan Sethuraman, Director Enterprise ERP IT Finance, Johnson Controls
  • June 17, 2011
See how service order functionality integrates with the controlling function to record, track, and manage both costs and revenues resulting from service functions for some of the common customer service scenarios.
Key Concept
Customer service (CS) order functionality helps you capture the desired level of detail pertaining to activities and resources used to carry out service, cost incurred, and revenue generated. CS order functionality also provides information to help you make critical decisions. With the help of this integrated solution, controllers and management accountants can periodically measure the effectiveness of the service function using various profitability analysis (CO-PA) solutions and tools in their SAP systems.

In the current competitive business environment, customer service (CS) is no longer a simple overhead function. As customers become increasingly service focused, organizations have to spend a significant amount of money and resources on this business function. Therefore, managers face an increasing requirement to analyze its profitability and to have a drill-down view of costs booked at each service order level.

In this context I provide you with a practical insight and detailed solution on how the SAP CS module integrates with the managerial accounting (CO) module to meet this management objective. I explain the basic process flow associated with service order functionality in an SAP system, starting from the creation of a service order based on notification to the generation of debit memos to bill customers. I also discuss some of the unique process scenarios associated with service orders and controlling approaches. For readers who are not familiar with the CS business function, I have provided a sidebar (“Introduction to CS”) explaining some common terms associated with the CS business function.

I begin by discussing some of the configuration elements in the CS/CO module that are relevant to my discussion on integration of customer service business function with the CO module. I then explain a very important aspect related to the service billing process — the dynamic item processor (DIP) profile.

Muralidharan Sethuraman

Muralidharan Sethuraman is director enterprise ERP IT finance at Johnson Controls. He has more than 16 years of industry experience leading and managing multiple SAP implementation and business transformation programs across geographies. Muralidharan is currently leading the SAP S/4HANA program at Johnson Controls. He specializes in SAP Financials and has done design lead, solution architect roles in global SAP implementation programs. Muralidharan is a subject matter expert in the areas of product cost analysis and management, inventory and working capital management, management reporting and profitability analysis, financial analytics and reporting, and business planning. He has published multiple articles in Financials Expert in these areas.

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