Tailor the Severity of System Messages to Your Needs

  • by Anurag Barua, Independent SAP Advisor
  • March 15, 2008
Learn how to determine if a particular message is configurable and the required steps to alter the severity of a message. Follow this phased approach to ensure proper configuration in your SAP ERP system.
SAP production support and implementation teams sometimes need to change the severity of a system-issued message, such as when an error message is inappropriate. Although you cannot change the severity of all system messages, you can configure a certain percentage of them. Based on my experience, many users are unaware of this technique due to inadequate documentation and end up developing unnecessary extensive solutions. Although you can’t customize some messages because they are required to execute a business function successfully in SAP ERP, I’ll show you how to configure several messages to meet your company’s specific needs.

The approach to adjusting the severity of a message consists of three phases: message control customizing, transactions SM30 and SM31, and user exits/Business Add-Ins (BAdIs), depending on the type of message you want to alter. All three phases range in difficulty and system impact. For example, phase 1 (message control customizing) only changes a message’s severity in a specific module, such as Materials Management (MM). Phase 2 (transactions SM30 and SM31) modifies message severity across modules. Lastly, phase 3 (user exits or BAdIs) alters message severity throughout your ERP system and could potentially disrupt or transform several business processes across your landscape.

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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