Release 4.6C Enhances Assignment of Open Items in A/R

  • by Shamshir Karim, Senior Consultant, Clarkston Consulting
  • September 15, 2004
Accounts receivable (A/R) is a communications process that is the lifeblood of any company. If your collections process isn't running smoothly, you are putting your company at risk. Consider the typical problems of an A/R department. Deductions, underpayments, on account payments, and aged receivables keep collection specialists busy year-round. The author describes an enhancement in Release 4.6 that speeds up this process.
Key Concept
In the past, when you wanted to clear open items, you had better be ready to take the process all the way through to posting, because saving your work beforehand wasn’t an option. New functionality available since Release 4.6C allows invoices and credits to be assigned and saved in what SAP calls an assignment of open items. This assignment has a unique number assigned to it via payment advice numbers. It can be displayed, edited, downloaded, and finally used in a clearing transaction.

In the past, if you wanted to propose to clear open items in the Accounts Receivable module from a customer's account by netting invoices with credits, you would, for example, have to download the open items into Excel from either a report or a query, sorting and manipulating the ones you wanted to net. This would typically be a time- consuming analytical process to make sure you found all the open items. You would then correspond with the customer proposing this netting and wait for the reply. Once a reply was received, and assuming the proposal was accepted, you would have to go back into the system and reselect all the open items previously identified. You did double work just by having to look for the open items again.

New functionality available since Release 4.6C called assignment of open items enhances this process by allowing you to save the work you have done to identify what you want to clear or net. The results are retrievable so you can pull them up at a later point. This differs from traditional clearing methods (e.g., using transaction F- 32), which do not allow you to save your work before the posting. I will give you two business scenarios that display the functionality and then I will look at what configuration steps are necessary.

Shamshir Karim

Shamshir Karim is a senior consultant with Clarkston Consulting, a nationally recognized management and consulting firm that creates successful business strategies and implements technology solutions. Shamshir has been working with SAP since 1994, focusing on the FI/CO modules with emphasis on business process design, re- engineering, and cross-module integration to FI/CO. Shamshir graduated with honors from Bristol University, England, with a degree in computer science.

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