Exploring Business Partner

Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Explain how the master data records for vendors and customers are structured
  • Explain the difference between the different business partner categories and roles

Master Data Records

Scenario

You want to set up your business partners (customers and vendors) in your S/4HANA Fashion system. Therefore, you learn how business partners are structured and classified.

Business Partner

Basics about business partner:

  • Business partners are legal or natural persons with whom you have a business relationship. Customers and suppliers are business partners with whom you have a relationship involving the transfer of goods and services.

  • The basic elements of the business partner concept can be explained as under:

    Overview of General Business Partner Terms

    ConceptExplanation
    Business Partner CategoryThe data that is available for your business transactions depends on the business partner category.
    Business Partner RoleA business partner can take on different business partner roles , which allow different views of the business partner data depending on the business function.
    Business Partner RelationshipA relationship connects two business partners and is characterized by the business partner relationship category.
    Business Partner Group HierarchyYou can represent the structure of an organization using the business partner group hierarchy.

While creating a business partner, we must first select the business partner category. This can be either a:

  • Person
  • Organization or
  • Group

It is not possible to create any other business partner categories. Once assigned, this cannot be changed at a later stage.

The BP role General Business Partner is assigned to the business partner by default. Depending on the function of the business partner involved, the following roles can be selected:

  • Contact person
  • Employee
  • Organizational unit
  • Internet user

A business partner can be a customer and a supplier at the same time if, for example, your customer also supplies goods to you or if a supplier is also one of your customers. In this case, you must create a customer master record and a supplier master record for the business partner. You can create a link between the two master records by entering the supplier number in the customer master record and the customer number in the supplier master record. Plants are a good example of this kind of a relationship.

Business Partners are created in the system using transaction BP.

Business Partner Categories and Roles

Customer Master Data

The figure shows the overview screen Display Organization.

Customer master data is divided in three parts:

  • General data - 000000 Business Partner
  • Company code data - FLCU00 FI Customer and
  • Sales area data - FLCU01 Customer

General data is valid client wide, whereas the company code data is only valid for the respective company code, which is entered. It is possible to maintain the same customer within different company codes with different data. The same applies to sales area data: the same customer can be maintained for different sales areas each with different data.

The Customer Partner Functions typically are:

  • Sold-to Party
  • Ship-to Party
  • Bill-to Party
  • Payer

Vendor Master Data

The figure shows the overview screen Display Organization.

Supplier master data is divided in three parts:

  • General data - 000000 Business Partner
  • Company code data - FLVN00 FI Supplier and
  • Data for purchasing organization - FLVN01 Supplier

General data is valid client wide, whereas the company code data is only valid for the respective company code, which is entered. It's possible to maintain the same supplier within different company codes with different data. The same applies to purchase organization data: the same supplier can be maintained for different purchase organizations each with different data.

The Supplier Partner Functions typically are:

  • Ordering Address
  • Goods Supplier
  • Invoice Presented by
  • Alternative Payee

Business Partner - Consumer

Facts about consumer records:

  • A consumer is a natural person for whom you create a customer master record and a master record as a central business partner. In an operative transaction, only the customer data are of any significance.

  • Consumer maintenance allows you to enter all the data on a single screen. If you're working with a consumer, then reference data (known as the reference customer) must be available for creating the master data and processing sales.

  • You can create the following general information for a consumer:

    • Personal data

    • Address

    • Banking details

    • Payment cards

  • The business partner category Person is used in this case.

Reference Customer

The reference customer can be created using the BP category Organization. Only one reference customer can be created per client. The reference customer must be created in the system as the company code data and the sales area data for consumers are determined from this.

The assignment of Consumer to Reference customer ensures/defines the maintenance of consumers in specific sales areas with its corresponding company code data.

Note: The assignment of the reference customer to a consumer isn't a "mass transaction". Currently the assignment can only be maintained via the SAP GUI transaction. The transaction to be used for the assignment is VD07.

Business Partners - Others

The process of creating other types of business partners remain the same as the Customer & Supplier BP:

E-commerce Customer
Use BP category Organization.
Sales Employee

Use BP category Organization. The sales employee must be assigned to a corresponding customer.

Intercompany Business Partner

For intercompany transactions, and intercompany supplier and intercompany customer must be maintained. This is generally setup as 1 business partner in the system. BP category to be used is Organization.

Postprocessing Desktop

Sometimes the saving of the business partner isn't possible, because mandatory fields aren't maintained. By pressing continue - the error message is gone and not visible anymore. We can view these messages and rectify them using the transaction MDS_PPO2. This transaction can be used only from the SAP GUI.

Log in to track your progress & complete quizzes