For those not familiar with the calendar, and as a reminder, the Advent Calendar is a Christmas tradition originating in Germany, which counts down the days until Christmas beginning with December 1st. For more examples of what these blogs are you may refer to the old SAP EWM one we started in 2021 and then repeated the year after with the SAP EWM Advent Calendar 2022.
Unlike the previous years however, this year we will provide a weekly blog instead, which will compile topics both already known and new. This way the content will be more easily digestible and make the content more accessible for future reviews and repeat reads.
The SAP Logistics Private Cloud family of solutions, consisting of SAP Extended Warehouse Management, SAP Transportation Management and Core Logistics, have been brought this year even closer together, and the trend will continue strongly. Thus this year’s Advent Calendar will reflect this trend through our selection of topics. We hope you enjoy this year’s series of articles and that the information you will discover proves useful and exciting. And we begin this year with a recap of all the relevant logistics product releases.
We have begun this year with the SAP EWM SAP S/4HANA 2022 Feature Pack 1 update. As with most Feature Packs, the delivered enhancements not only improved and complimented the SAP EWM features delivered in the SAP S/4HANA 2022 release, but also added new features to our strategic warehouse solution. Some of the highlights from this release are:
Machine Learning for Slotting - With slotting by Machine Learning (ML), the system derives storage concepts for new or modified products by analysing existing or past products. With this new capability, warehouse analytics experts and clerks can use Machine Learning (ML) to reduce the effort of initial setup by lowering implementation efforts to derive slotting rules automatically from current and historic product data.
Segmentation in Advanced Production Integration - With segmentation, users can divide materials logically based on certain attributes, such as quality or customer segment. When materials that are relevant for segmentation are used, they can be managed in the warehouse for individual stock segments.
SAP Fiori App “Load or Unload Freight Orders” - With the “Load or Unload Freight Orders” app Warehouse Clerks can use the planned freight orders from Transportation Management (TM) to process loading activities in Advanced Shipping and Receiving.
Alongside SAP EWM, in February 2023 we have also released the SAP Transportation Management Feature Package 1 (FPS1) for the SAP S/4HANA 2022 release. With this Feature Pack we delivered innovations for our supply chain execution platform with a strong focus on Integration aspects and scenarios to the market. Additionally, to new features in Advanced Shipping & Receiving (ASR) we strengthened the established and well proven TM-EWM integration and improved usability and interoperability. Some of the highlights worth checking out are:
Transport Driven Outbound Process with Advanced Shipping & Receiving (ASR) - The focus of prior Advanced Shipping & Receiving scenarios have been warehouse or execution driven. With the SAP S/4HANA 2022 FPS1 release we support a transportation driven ASR process. This means, that the transportation planner is using all of the capabilities of TM like the VSR Optimizer, Package Building and Load Optimization to finalize a cost optimized transportation plan and in a second step this cost optimal plan is handed over to SAP EWM for warehouse processing.
Strategic Freight Procurement: Flat view format for Carrier RFQs and using Spreadsheets - As a shipper you can work now with a single user interface (UI) for capacity demand and rates when negotiating freight agreement requests for quotation (RFQs) with carriers. You can manage your capacity demand and rates for an item in a consolidated flat view in a freight agreement RFQ master. The flat view is based on a capacity demand and rates profile that you define in Customizing.
Strategic Freight Procurement: Create RfQ Master from Freight Agreement, also for an advanced RFQ type - With this feature, as a shipper you are able to use capacity demand and rates in a RFQ master that is created from a freight agreement.
This year we further strengthened end-to-end logistics processes through tighter integration with SAP Transportation Management, we have also delivered additional capabilities to support production warehousing scenarios with integration to production systems, as well as a wide range of usability, extensibility, industrial specific and functional enhancements. The main theme of this year’s release is decentral integration, as enabled it for Advanced Shipping & Receiving, KANBAN, repetitive manufacturing and defect handling. Here is just a measure of the highlights delivered in this release, and we begin with a decentral themed topic:
Decentral Advanced Shipping & Receiving - You can now make use of the Advanced Shipping & Receiving integration in decentralized Extended Warehouse Management (EWM) and Transportation Management (TM), which are deployed on a single SAP S/4HANA decentralized system. Thanks to this, users can work independently in their EWM and TM system after the deliveries have been transferred. Please note that, currently this is only available for outbound processes, and we plan to expand this option for inbound as well in a future release. For the other decentral themed integrations, I highly encourage the reading of the release blog linked above.
Fiori App “Advanced Shipping & Receiving Cockpit” - With it, users can monitor multiple freight orders (FO) as well as loading and unloading points throughout the warehouse. The following actions are available when using this app:
Navigate to the Load or Unload Freight Orders app by selecting one or more stops associated with the same freight order
Handle EWM-managed and Inventory Management-managed deliveries
Indicate whether a vehicle arrives at or departs from a door
Indicate whether goods are loaded completely on stop level
Indicate the staging area, staging area group, and staging bay of the goods on stop level
Search based on freight order, consignment order, stop, or freight unit
Cancel Goods Receipt after Putaway - It is possible to reverse goods receipt of received HUs before final putaway using the Warehouse Monitor app, in the HU in Process With the new feature, you can also reverse goods receipt of HUs from production after final putaway .You can also use the API interface /SCWM/IF_API_RVS_HU_PTWY in a custom development to perform the reversal of goods receipt for HUs received from production after final putaway.
Customer Connection Improvement Requests – In this year’s release we also supplemented our roadmap with several improvement requests that came from the Customer Connection 2022 program. Just this release alone saw 13 improvements delivered, such as PMR based staging, more monitor methods, a more streamlined process flow for automatic packing in outbound processes, and more. Please check out the linked “What’s New” document linked above for more details.
Also as part of the SAP S/4HANA 2023 release, SAP Transportation Management delivered new exciting innovations and consistent quality of life improvements across a wide range of categories, from integration capabilities to Package Building, Load Planning, Scheduling and Planning. As there are too many topics to cover, as in the previous paragraphs I would like to go over just a few key highlights and leave the rest for your own exploration.
Support of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions (CO2) for road Freight Orders - GHG emissions are considered during automatic & manual planning, calculated in the freight order and finally distributed to the items and stages. Firstly, Vehicle Scheduling & Routing (VSR) Optimisation can take into account emission related factors to consider the impact of emissions and select the least emission generating solution based on the given inputs. The calculation of emissions uses master data (equipment group & type) where the emission parameters for an empty and fully loaded truck are stored. These values are evaluated, and the emissions are calculated per stage and aggregated to document level using a distance-weight based calculation of the truck.
Display of emissions during planning phase
New Free Positioning Load Planning Engine - For load planning, the user is free to choose which load planning engine to use based on the scenario. By using the new approach, much better utilisation of load planning can be achieved. Manual reworking of load planning can also be reduced.
New Driver Time and Working Hours Constraints - In previous releases, legal restrictions were supported with approximate calculations. However, the new capabilities introduced with SAP S/4HANA 2023 take the functionality to a new level by supporting country-specific regulations such as driver times, breaks, daily and weekly rest periods. Embedded VSR takes these driving and working time restrictions into account to create an executable plan that includes scheduled breaks. Rest periods and driving times are displayed in the Transportation Cockpit in various lists and hierarchies and are nicely visualised in the Gantt chart.
What’s New for SAP Warehouse Robotics
Aside from the typical Logistics product releases, I would also like to quickly summarize the updates that were delivered for SAP’s newest robotics onboarding and management solution aptly named SAP Warehouse Robotics. Just like SAP EWM and SAP TM, there were two releases this year, namely:
SAP Warehouse Robotics 2305 - In the 2305 release, we mainly enhanced the integration with non-SAP fleet management systems, which allows SAP Warehouse Robotics to be able to integrate with various kinds of autonomous mobile robots (AMRs). Together with the direct robot integration that was launched in previous releases, there are now two integration scenarios that are supported by SAP Warehouse Robotics (please see the linked blog for more details). In addition, we provided a new app to define fleet management systems, map the warehouses in these systems to the warehouses in SAP Warehouse Robotics, and create robots, as well as an app to monitor warehouse orders and the corresponding robot tasks that are sent to a fleet management system.
SAP Warehouse Robotics 2308 - Released shortly after May’s 2305 update, the SAP Warehouse Robotics 2308 release brought new features to automate warehouse operations using robots to move handling units (HUs) from source storage bins to destination storage bins. In this latest update, SAP Warehouse Robotics has introduced several exciting additions that further streamline the integration with fleet management systems, improve integration with SAP EWM and support error handling through the use of clarification bins to solve destination bin errors for Fleet Management Systems.
FIND OUT MORE!
This is only part 1 of this season’s Advent Calendar, and if you’d like to know what other topics we cover, then stay tuned for more.