Keeping it simple with SAP Disputes Management reporting

28 March 2015

Ana Porfido

Ana Porfido

S/4HANA Consultant

As part of a recent SAP Disputes Management implementation, a Collections Manager asked me how he could get a smart suite of disputes reports with minimum roll-out effort. I’ve been asked this a number of times, even from users who are already using it because there is very little you can get out of reporting within ECC.

From a roles perspective, Disputes can be divided into Processors, Persons Responsible and Coordinators. But only the reporting needs of the Processors are fully covered in ECC. So how can you cover the reporting needs of the Management and Coordinators involved in the process?

A set of standard SAP BW queries are delivered for this purpose, however...

  • What needs to be taken into consideration during the design of SAP Disputes Management to facilitate meaningful reporting?
  • Which of those standard BW queries can give you a smarter insight with minimum implementation effort?

Aligning your design to meet your reporting expectations 

What kind of questions do you want your reports to answer?

  • If you’re interested in reducing the number of disputes that are created, then you might need to ask the business users to identify the real cause behind the creation of their dispute cases before you start building the solution. Is your logistics partner delivering orders incorrectly too often? Is your pricing scheme frequently misunderstood or incorrectly applied? Once you’ve identified them, your list of root causes will be ready to drive your future remediation actions and add more value to your SAP solution
  • If you’re looking to improve your disputes resolution time, you might want to gain some insight into the approach that is taken in certain types of disputes that are resolved in less time than others. This may be the case because one of your team members knows more about a specific area from where some dispute cases stem or simply because he/she has a better working relationship with a certain customer. This can be easily achieved by grouping disputes by reason code and/or category. The best way of making the most out of that grouping is to train your processors to own specific resolution areas or groups of customers.
  • Finally, what percentage of your outstanding receivables is explained by disputed invoices? Or simply put how much money you are unable to collect just because there’s an issue with the invoice. This type of insight might be particularly relevant if your business is influenced in some or many ways by seasonal factors. BW queries are ready to help you assess the impact on receivables without doing anything specific during the build of your Disputes solution. 

Fewer queries, more insight

From a SAP BW perspective, two queries will help you achieve the results you’re looking for. From one of those queries, two reports can be defined.

  1. One aimed for Team Leads or Coordinators – a volume and value metrics report
  2. One aimed at Senior Management and other decision makers – a performance evaluation report.

The data source for both will be all available dispute case attributes, including bespoke fields. The “Volume and value metrics” report will give you the snapshot of existing and resolved cases, workload of team members, “bundles” of issues and bottlenecks. The “Performance evaluation” report will help you keep an eye on SLA’s, monitor the performance of your teams and take strategic decisions towards reason codes and categories groupings, disputed amounts and resolution times.   

A third report can be built out of a second query, which covers the AR big picture. This “Disputes compared with AR” report shows the percentage that your original disputed amounts represent in your open receivables. This report is not at all crucial to monitor the progress of your disputes and manage your team in an effective way, it is more of a “nice to have” that can be implemented along with the other two, but could well be worked out from ECC data.

Conclusion

So why should an SAP Dispute Management project go for the SAP BW reporting option?

Because with just two simple, but accurately designed reports, SAP Disputes BW reporting can provide you with enough insight to:

  • Proactively rearrange your disputes resolution strategy in order to achieve your  SLA’s
  • Attack the root causes of dispute-triggering issues
  • Identify the bottlenecks in your SAP Disputes Management process
  • Enhance your customer experience as a whole
  • Reduce your DSO (which ultimately is the whole point of adopting this solution!).

The only prerequisite to achieve this is to focus on the right points during design phase and then extract the data from BW the way that best suits your business needs.  

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