If you are contemplating implementing SAP Event Management, you will need to be prepared to answer a series of questions to be able to establish a design that caters to your needs. These list of questions should help guide your JAD whiteboard session. No substitution from standing up there and guiding the discussion with questions that need answering -> that ultimately lead to a solid, scalable and efficient solution design.
The following list of questions is a comprehensive list of what needs to be asked…
1 Project Management
1.1 Do you have the right level of project engagement?
If you are going to embark on a SAP EM project, which is heavily intertwined in the business process, are you sure that the business has bought in to the solution and that solid representation is going to be available during the project?
Do we have executive sponsorship / buy in for the project?
1.2 Do I have access to the following resources: Functional and technical resources?
Do you have detailed knowledge in SAP EM and if not, what is your plan for getting up to speed on SAP EM?
Do your ABAP folks have knowledge in SAP EM? SAP EM’s ABAP is a little different to normal ABAP code in that it is object oriented in nature and tied to configuration. I.e. You need to know both to develop and unit test in the SAP EM space.
Who has authorization to do configuration and who has authorization to do development? Can external consultants do these activities?
1.3 Do you have the right change management resources and process in place?
Do you have the right focus on change management and education to drive out the intended advantages of the project?
What is the change control process for both configuration and development objects?
1.4 How are project documents managed?
Where are the project documents to be stored?
What documents are required for the project? SPA EM Design Template, Functional Specifications, Technical Specifications, User Acceptance Test Script, …
2 Design Process
2.1 Do you have a SAP EM Solution Architect?
Do you have an expert in SAP Event Management to drive the design workshops? SAP EM is a “framework” providing Track and Trace functionality to any business process. With this being said, it is possible to implement any solution in many ways, with many of them being incorrect, based on the requirements
2.2 What is the design philosophy for the project?
What is the current design and adapt vs. adopt philosophy of the company? I.e. Does the company prescribe a standard approach to any change made to the system?
3 Trackable Processes
3.1 Which processes do I want to track?
Having a good understanding of what SAP Event Management is used for is key here. One of its main functions is to monitor a business process matching the execution of the process against the plan of the process to uncover exceptions or opportunities in the process.
Another key function of SAP EM is to provide visibility of the status of the business process to interested parties to that business process.
If your need for your business process falls in one or both the above 2 categories then the business process is a candidate for tracking…
E.g. Order to Cash, Procure to Pay, Outbound Delivery, Incoming Vendor Payment
3.2 Which objects of these processes should be monitored?
Once you have determined which business processes are in scope you need to be able to isolate the objects that are utilized in the business process
E.g. Order to Cash: Sales Order, Outbound Delivery (Warehouse scenario), Purchase Order (Drop ship scenario), Customer Invoice
3.3 For each trackable object do you now at which level you want to track the object?
Most trackable objects within SAP are broken down in to header and item level. Some are down to schedule line level as well. At which level do you want to track each object?
Do you understand the relationship between the objects? Can they be correlated with each other based on data in the sending system?
3.4 For each trackable object what data needs to captured? (Parameters)
For each parameter do you have the following detail?
Description of parameter
Data length and type
What is the source location (table and field) for each parameter?
Are there lookup values for the parameter and if so where do they come from?
3.5 For each trackable object what historical data do you want to retain in the user view of the data?
Do you want to see past Expected Event history?
Do you want to see past status history?
Do you want to see past measurement history (if applicable)?
4 Visibility Processes
4.1 Will I use the out of the box scenarios or will I be customizing the delivered scenarios?
Firstly, are you familiar with what comes pre-delivered with SAP EM?
Once you have an understanding of what is available can you recognize common processes or business objects that meet some of your needs?
Any advantage of pre-delivered content should be leveraged. Understand that all pre-delivered scenarios (visibility processes) need to be tweaked in some way in order to make it work in your environment.
5 Trackable Events
5.1 Which events within my processes am I interested in tracking?
For each object in your business process you will need to determine which events are relevant for tracking. Be sure to address changes to the business object as well. E.g. Sales Order create, Sales Order complete, Sales Order Changed, Delivery Created, Delivery Picked, Delivery Packed, Delivery Issued, …
For each event was is the condition that needs to be upheld before the event is triggered?
5.2 For each event what data needs to captured? (Event Parameters)