The new release of SAP S/4HANA Cloud, 2108, is here and with that of course comes this new blog on innovations for the professional services industry.
You can find a collection on overall professional services insights for SAP S/4HANA Cloud in this collection blog.
As usual, in the video below you can find a short summary of the three most important highlights of this release, but in this blog, you will also find more innovations than just the three highlights.
Let’s kick it of again with the new project billing functionality. The mid to long-term goal is to replace this new functionality with the original one in SAP S/4HANA Cloud for professional services. With this release we are introducing the first steps in this direction.
The scope item 4E9 is now marked as a standard scope item and this will be set as a default for new customers starting with 2111. On the other side, in the original billing functionality, the apps “Release Billing Proposal” and “Edit Billing Request” will be marked as to be “depreciated”, but of course you will still be able to use with them. This is just the first step in the journey to making the new project billing the only billing functionality in the professional services scenario.
At this point in time it is not yet defined at which time the original billing functionality will be finally depreciated, but customers should be aware this is the strategy and familiarize themselves with the new project billing functionality.
Enablement of contract type periodic service in project billing
With this new feature, a billing specialist can now prepare project billing requests and billing document requests for billing elements of contract type Periodic Service in the “Manage Project Billing” app.
In the “Schedule Project Billing Preparation” app, it is now possible to schedule the preparation of billing documents requests for billing elements of contract type Periodic Service. This is of course a great benefit for project billing scenarios which follow the periodic service procedure.
Enabling down payments in project billing for project-based services
With this new feature, a billing specialist can prepare billing document requests for prepayments of item usage down payment for billing elements of contract type “Time & Expense” and “Fixed Price” in the “Manage Project Billing” app. In the “Schedule Project Billing Preparation” app,
it is now possible to schedule the preparation of prepayments of item usage down payment. This enables users to monitor and prepare billing for billing elements with item-usage down payments, create a billing document request for a billing element upon submitting the prepared project billing request and provide insight on the status of the down payment in the Manage Project Billing app.
Notes handling across the process in project billing
In this release we enhanced the “Prepare Billing” screen of the “Manage Project Billing” app with the feature of viewing and editing Note texts, wherever applicable. If you are a billing specialist, you will now be able to view and edit the note texts added in the Manage Project Billing app. Please note that you can view and edit the note text for Time and Expenses billing type, and you can only view the note text for Fixed Price billing type.
The users will not only be able to view the note but also change the note field added by a consultant during time or expense recording. Capturing the note during time or expense recording, transferring the note field to financials, viewing and change the note field in the Manage Project Billing app and including the note field in the itemized list of a customer invoice.
Similar transfer of the note field of a fixed-price billing plan item across the process; however, there is no ability to change it in the “Manage Project Billing” app.
Service Rendered Date transferred from SAP Concur
Another smaller addition with this 2108 release is the filling of the service rendered date in SAP S/4HANA Cloud with transaction date from expense report line item.
With a dedicated decision in additional posting settings for financial posting, you can decide, whether to forward the service rendered date through checking the checkbox. With this addition we are leveraging the service rendered date in the “Manage Project Billing” app.
As in the previous releases, you can also find more information on the new project billing functionality in this blog post from Andreas Hammerschmidt.
Next up, let us talk about the greatest innovation within this release, the integration of solution order and professional services projects.
Integration of projects into solution orders
With 2108, the Solution Orders are enhanced with the capability to sell projects together with physical goods, services, and subscriptions in a single order. The Solution Order orchestrates the creation of a project with the release of the project item. The Solution Order Specialist is informed in case of relevant project changes. Financial Analysts can monitor the solution order profitability including projects.
This new functionality supports business transformations from selling products to providing higher-margin solutions and increases the revenue by selling combinations of physical goods, one-time services, recurring services, subscriptions, and projects
Next on the list are 2 topics from the resource management functionality on the SAP Business Technology Platform.
Intelligent resource recommendations
First, in order to find the right resources for a resource request it is important to consider skills, but as well consider different levels of experience across different employees. The new skill proficiencies which can be used in the resource request to define in a more granular way what is needed and the enhanced matching checking which candidates do bring in the right proficiency.
Team Utilization View with assignment information
The Team Utilization View now allows you to drill down into the assignments for a Project Team Member for a specific period. You can directly open the resource request and change the assignment. This facilitates to identify and as well solve conflicts by shifting assignments to another period or to another person.
This functionality will support users with transparency on which assignments are leading to the utilization and identification of conflict and change of conflicting assignments.
Thanks for taking the time and reading this summary.
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