Where Is the D-U-N-S Number in Your SAP System?

  • by Anurag Barua, Independent SAP Advisor
  • August 17, 2009
Find where an important but confusing number is kept in various parts of your SAP system.

Of all the many standards that are commonly used in SAP systems (such as ANSI, EDIFACT, and SAML), one of the least-well-known is the Data Universal Numbering System (D-U-N-S) number. It is a unique, randomly-generated, nine-digit number that is assigned to any business entity that registers with Dun & Bradstreet (D&B), the international customer information company. The D-U-N-S number is closely associated with business partners such as vendors and customers. This unique numbering scheme helps businesses reduce and eliminate errors caused by duplication of business partners in companies’ records. It has gained global acceptance since its inception in the 1960s.

In fact, in certain jurisdictions and governments, having a D-U-N-S number is mandatory for transacting business — one of the requirements of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) is that any entity that wants to receive stimulus money from a US federal government agency must have a D-U-N-S number. Given that many companies are currently vying for stimulus, the use of the D-U-N-S number is likely to increase in SAP systems.

Anurag Barua

Anurag Barua is an independent SAP advisor. He has 23 years of experience in conceiving, designing, managing, and implementing complex software solutions, including more than 17 years of experience with SAP applications. He has been associated with several SAP implementations in various capacities. His core SAP competencies include FI and Controlling FI/CO, logistics, SAP BW, SAP BusinessObjects, Enterprise Performance Management, SAP Solution Manager, Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC), and project management. He is a frequent speaker at SAPinsider conferences and contributes to several publications. He holds a BS in computer science and an MBA in finance. He is a PMI-certified PMP, a Certified Scrum Master (CSM), and is ITIL V3F certified.

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