How to Configure and Implement Shift Notes and Shift Reports in PP and PM: Part 1

  • by Jawad Akhtar, Head of SAP Delivery, AbacusConsulting
  • December 14, 2011
Learn how to configure and implement SAP’s shift note functionality with the installation of SAP ERP Central Component (SAP ECC) 6.0 enhancement package 3 or above. Find out how to use shift notes in the production planning (PP) and plant maintenance (PM) modules to record important details related to any specific shift, such as those pertaining to a defective production batch, a problem in the equipment, a labor issue, or simply a few notes on the routine activities performed during a shift.
Key Concept
With the installation of SAP ERP Central Component (SAP ECC) 6.0 enhancement package 3 and above, you can activate the versatile shift note functionality and use it to record the day-to-day activities of different work shifts. The shift note derives its origin and concept from the notification functionality included in the plant maintenance module. A notification is a formal indication that a problem or an issue has occurred and needs to be addressed. In a shift note, the options to record important information, especially for production teams, are far greater than those available in a notification, and it includes the added benefit of relating information to production for reporting and evaluation purposes.

There has been a long-standing need for a provision to record production-related activities and issues and make them subsequently available for reference, analysis, and remedial action. With the installation of SAP ERP Central Component (SAP ECC) 6.0 enhancement package 3 and above, you have the option of shift notes and shift reports to cater to these requirements.

Shift notes are integral when, for example, during a night shift, a machine malfunction results in defective products being produced. The machine has to be immediately stopped by the line supervisor and corrective actions need to be taken, such as adjusting the gauges and the heating temperature. After these adjustments are made, the machine then begins to work at the optimum level. At the end of his shift, the line supervisor records all the pertinent information related to this event in a shift note, including:

  • Shift time when the problem occurred
  • On which machine the problem occurred
  • The production order number of that night shift
  • Types of problems encountered
  • Checks conducted to ascertain the root cause analysis of the problems
  • Corrective actions taken
  • How long it took to fix the problem
  • Any preventive maintenance or other suggestions that can help in ensuring that the same does not reoccur in future

The next day, when the line manager reviews the previous day’s shift notes, he or she has all the necessary information on the issue that occurred, and can also add further instructions or engage relevant departments or persons as deemed necessary. All of this comprehensive information also acts as a reference to someone encountering a similar problem in the future. 

Jawad Akhtar

Jawad Akhtar earned his chemical engineering degree from Missouri University of Science and Technology. He has 17 years of professional experience, of which nine years are in SAP. He has completed eight end-to-end SAP project implementation lifecycles in the areas of PP, QM, MM, PM, and DMS in the steel, automobile, chemical, fertilizer, FMCG, and building products industries. He also has worked as an SAP integration manager and an SAP project manager. He has been proactively involved in a business development and solution architect role for seven years. He is the author of Production Planning and Control with SAP ERP, it's filled with in-depth infomation on discrete, process, and repetitive manufacturing types. His profile on LinkedIn is at You may follow Jawad on Twitter @jawadahl. Currently, he is associated with AbacusConsulting as Head of SAP Delivery.

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