Load Time Data from an External System Into CATS with Ease

  • by Manuel Gallardo, SAP HR System Architect
  • March 15, 2008
Learn how to avoid problems when you import time data from a spreadsheet or external systems into the Cross-Application Time Sheet. Selecting the best method to develop an interface is the key to success.
Key Concept

Cross-Application Time Sheet (CATS) is a standard SAP transaction that allows users to capture time data for multiple SAP modules (e.g., Human Resources, Plant Maintenance, and Project System) in a single screen. Occasionally, companies use both CATS and external third-party systems to capture time. To centralize all their time data in the CATS system, these companies must build interfaces to load time records from the external systems into CATS.

Many companies that implement Cross-Application Time Sheet (CATS) run into the same predicament, which is the need for a central repository where all time data resides. This dilemma arises because companies use CATS as well as other external time recording systems. There are several company-specific reasons to use a different time capturing method, such as physical restrictions at the work site, infrastructure limitations, and a lack of funds to replace every time terminal.

CATS was specifically designed for manual time entry only, not for batch load. Consequently, there is no standard- delivered method to load external data into CATS via a program. Therefore, companies that want to feed external data into CATS must develop their own custom interface.

Based on my experience, I’ll describe the process that I recommend to efficiently load time data from external systems into CATS. This process uses standard BAPIs to load the data. Although you could develop different methods to load data, always make sure you carefully review the design and thoroughly test your interface to ensure proper data load. Refer to the sidebar, “Should You Always Load Time Data Directly Into CATS?,” below to evaluate your options.

Manuel Gallardo

Manuel Gallardo is the director of HCM consulting at /N SPRO. He is a former SAP platinum consultant and his area of expertise is SAP HCM enterprise architecture, SuccessFactors, and enterprise mobility. Since working on his first SAP implementation in 1994, he has also worked on a wide variety of SAP HR modules, as well as SAP NetWeaver Portal and ABAP development. Manuel is the author of Configuring and Using CATS, and is a frequent conference speaker.

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