Copy Control Gives You Flexibility to Manage Your SD Document Flow

  • by Mitresh Kundalia, Director — SAP Practice, Quality Systems & Software
  • January 1, 2005
Your system has to manage a multitude of sales, delivery, and billing documents. R/3 offers a powerful piece of configuration that controls how the source documents are copied into target documents in a document flow.
Key Concept
In R/3, copy control allows you to move critical data from a source document to a target document and plays a key role in creating documents that make up a document flow.

Document flows are sequences of documents that make up a business transaction in ERP systems like R/3. They link documents together and allow relevant data to be copied from one document in the flow to another. When a delivery document is created, for example, the system copies the relevant information from a sales order. Document flows are crucial to the Sales and Distribution (SD) module.

With copy control, documents such as sales orders can be generated based on information in existing sales, delivery, and billing documents, which are the components of some of the most common document flows in SD. The copy control function also provides the mechanics for performing other tasks such as checking what prerequisites must be met before any copying can take place.

Copy control settings are a flexible piece of the configuration that determine how information is moved from source to target documents in a document flow. Copy control's role in this process is to manage all the copying required for subsequent documents.

In this article, I will provide you with an overview of the copy control functionality and the various flexible features it offers. My focus is primarily on the copy control settings for billing documents, but the concepts are similar for copying information into sales and delivery documents. I will also detail the role that source and target document types and pricing types play in the process as well as explain how ABAP routines control certain copying prerequisites.

Mitresh Kundalia

Mitresh Kundalia heads the SAP practice at Quality Systems & Software (, a consulting firm specializing in SAP S/4HANA, SAP General Ledger, and complex System Landscape Optimization (SLO)-type reorganizations. Mitresh is widely acknowledged as a leading SAP expert, with multiple publications and an SAP-PRESS book to his credit. He has published more than 50 peer-reviewed articles and white papers, and he has given presentations at various SAP conferences and events. Mitresh is the chief solutions architect of General Ledger Migration Optimizer (GLMO), a leading product to accelerate and jump-start the SAP S/4HANA and SAP General Ledger initiatives; SAP Data Reorganization Optimizer (SDRO), an SLO-type product for managing complex system landscape reorganizations; and Group Currency Activation and Conversion (GCAC), a product suite to manage introduction of parallel currencies and conversion of data in a live SAP system.

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