Using SAP Bank Communication Management: Enhancing SAP Functionality with Custom Developments

  • by Mary Loughran, Independent Consultant
  • Brent Olsen, Sr. Technical Consultant, e5 Solutions Group
  • March 11, 2016
This article expands on the topics in the Financials Expert article “SAP Bank Communication Management: What You Need to Know.” It outlines a number of nice-to-have custom developments around payment processing using the SAP standard provided alerts messages.
Learning Objectives

Reading this article, you will learn how to:

  • Leverage the benefits of the SAP Bank Communication Management module
  • Understand the end-to-end process using the SAP Bank Communication Management module
  • Understand the different alert trigger points provided by SAP
  • Know which programs or transaction codes may integrate well with SAP Bank Communication Management
Key Concept
SAP Bank Communication Management is a relatively new module of SAP’s Financial Supply Chain Management component. SAP Bank Communication Management can be used to efficiently manage inbound (current day reports, prior day reports, payment file, and transaction-level acknowledgments) and outbound (AP, HR, and Treasury payments) communications with banking partners.

SAP payments are critical to standard business operations, so timing and monitoring of these payments are vital to being able to notify key users of issues that may arise. With the use of the alerts described in this article, email notifications are sent to key users when there are issues related to payment processing.

In this article we discuss enhancements using the SAP-delivered alert trigger points in the SAP Bank Communication Management module. This article is the first of three that detail enhancing the SAP standard payment processing functionality with custom development.

The custom developments mentioned in this article should apply across all banks, countries, and companies (all legal entities within one implementation). Typically, in global implementations, there are bank- or country-specific enhancements required. The enhancements mentioned in this article, however, should apply across all payments sent from an SAP system. The enhancements make SAP Bank Communication Management a more robust tool. Before reading about the three developments we describe, read the sidebar “Prerequisites to Using SAP Bank Communication Management” to make sure your system has all the prerequisites for using SAP Bank Communication Management.

Prerequisites to Using SAP Bank Communication Management

Licensing may be required to use the SAP Bank Communication Management module. Check with your SAP account executive before activating SAP Bank Communication Management.

The SAP Bank Communication Management business function (FIN_FSCM_BNK) must be activated using transaction code SFW5. To be able to fully use the functionality offered by SAP Bank Communication Management, the payment method should be defined with the Payment Medium Workbench (PMW) output option.

To add the enhancements mentioned in this article, an ABAP developer is needed. As ABAP code changes are being made, a developer’s key is needed. The ABAP team would normally have a developer’s key.

Alerts in SAP Bank Communication Management Processing

Alerts are important notification messages triggered at specific events. In SAP Bank Communication Management, three different types of payment alerts are available. For each, SAP has provided a Business Add-In (BAdI).

A BAdI is an object-oriented enhancement option that makes it the most sophisticated enhancement type. The main characteristic of a BAdI is that it provides a mechanism to change the functionality of a well-defined business function (e.g., a Business Application Programming Interface [BAPI]) without making changes to the SAP-delivered source code. Future upgrades of the original business function can be applied without losing the customer-specific enhancements.

The three types of payment alerts are displayed in Table 1.

Alert Business Add-In (BAdI)
File Creation Error Alert
This alert is triggered if the payment file creation fails.
Timeout Alert
This alert is triggered if too much time passes between two steps in the communication process with the bank on a payment file. When this alert is triggered, the company needs to find out if the bank did not receive the payment file or if the bank failed to acknowledge it.
Payment Status Alert
This alert is triggered if in the communication with the bank (after the file was created and submitted through the external network) there is a failed status message indicating a failed payment.
Table 1
SAP-delivered SAP Bank Communication Management alerts

Mary Loughran

Mary Loughran has been specializing in the SAP Financials area since 1997 and has worked with numerous clients throughout North America and Europe in the areas of finance and treasury. She was employed as a consultant with SAP America and was a designated expert within SAP America for treasury before she left SAP in 2004. Mary’s expertise is in the areas of SAP Treasury and Risk Management, SAP In-House Cash, Liquidity Planner, Accounts Payable, payments from SAP in general, Cash Management, and Electronic Banking. Mary was an independent consultant from 2004 to 2016. 

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Brent Olsen

Brent Olsen has been a developer and technical specialist in SAP systems since 1996. He  has worked with numerous clients throughout North America. Since 2010 he has worked at e5 Solutions Group, where he has developed more of a focus on the SAP Treasury and Risk Management module.

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