Use DCS EDI experience to Lower Shipment Notice Chargebacks
A manufacturer of sporting goods sold through mass merchants recently completed a conversion to SAP and then started receiving a significant number of charge backs because they sent flawed Shipment Notices. Realizing the proper setting of the IDoc enabled 1) accurate EDI ASNs and 2) prepared them for RFID required changes, they called DCS. They did not have the time to properly address this challenge. Because they wanted to be self-reliant for EDI mapping, a half day of training was included.
DCS reviewed their ASN process and created in-depth documentation discussing ASNs, how they are implemented in SAP, highlighting custom programs associated with their specific implementation and creating a new-trading partner set-up checklist and instructions. In addition, DCS provided the customer a list of recommendations and issues with their EDI and ASN processes. DCS also created a customer matrix listing each ASN customer so that they knew at a glance each customer’s charge back policies.
The EDI Manager had many years experience with EDI and took WebMethods™ training classes. Unfortunately, the SAP upgrade took longer than planned so assistance with EDI was needed. Prompt support was needed as chargebacks were beginning to accumulate.
When working with ASNs it is important to become familiar with some of the terminology related to them. ASNs communicate data in levels (HL Levels). There are five commonly used levels: shipment: Order, Tare (pallet), Pack and Item. The levels for brevity are referred to as SOTPI. Some customers require less then the five levels (SOI or SOPI) while other customers require the levels in a different order (SOIP). The order required generally relates directly to how the customer wants the order packed and shipped. You will likely be required to provide more than one hierarchy.
The DELVRY01 IDOC is created using transaction VL01 and is executed at post goods issue and creates the ASN with one order on it.
The SHPMNT03 IDOC is created using the VT01 transaction and includes multiple orders on the shipment. This ASN is created after the Shipment is created with the associated deliveries that have been previously post goods issued.
Shipping processes vary. If shipping large shipments, the standard SAP pick, pack and ship process (either VL or VT transactions depending on the type of ASN) can be used. However, smaller parcel carriers often provide third party software, which means there is an additional integration point to feed critical information into SAP for the ASN creation. If you ship using both parcel carriers (such as FedEx and UPS) and large trucker (Truckloads and Less-then-Truckloads), then you should be ready for an important distinction as each are handled by separate processes in SAP.
- Parcel packages use UPS OnLine World Link™ a manifest system to pack, label and ship orders.
- Larger shipments are shipped using the standard SAP pick, pack and ship process (either VL or VT transactions depending on the type of ASN) in conjunction with a custom label program integrated with SAP.
- For both types, the custom label program (transaction ZASN) is executed in order to create the appropriate customer labels.
ASN Set-up Requirements
There are several items that are required to be set-up in SAP to process and send ASNs. Generally ASN development occurs sometime after the inbound Purchase Order and outbound Invoice transactions are complete, so some of the set-up has already taken place for those transactions. PROD uses WMPROD, TRN uses WMTRN and DEV uses WMDEV. This means that the WE20 transaction does not need to be maintained for every new EDI trading partner if all Trading Partners use the same IDoc for each Delivery transaction.
This customer was able to understand their EDI ASN processes, reduce charge backs and became more self-reliant. Because the I.T. staff is now self-reliant, customers can be added quickly as demanded by marketing. Critical EDI functions were also expanded and manual processes were eliminated or streamlined during the successful conversion to SAP. Knotty technical challenges can be solved quickly with expertise. The first step to obtain SAP EDI expertise is easy, e-mail DCS for our FREE assessment.