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APO alternative unit of measure conversion based on characteristic value

Dec 01, 2017 at 10:39 PM


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Hello community,

I am seeking feedback from fellow Mill product community on possible modeling options to address following scenario within an ECC 6.0 DIMP / SCM 7.0 environment

Within APO PPDS, how can we enable alternative unit of measure conversion based on characteristic values for Planned Orders for a single variant material.

We understand the options available for batch specific unit of measure in material master but are under the assumption that this is related to batch level conversion not planned order.


Let me explain further below

Background/Process Flow -

  • We have setup variant materials using Make to Stock planning segment
  • When variant material "A" is configured with characteristic "roll width" value = 100" inches the estimated lbs per roll should be 1000 lbs however when "roll width" = 50" inches the estimated lbs per roll should be 500 lbs.
  • Current state functionality is that it will only read the Unit of measure conversion for rolls defined in the product master which is defaulted based on 100" width value (ie 1 RL = 1000 lbs)


How can we achieve functionality that allows the user to change the unit of measure in product view from LB to RL so that Planned order #1 for 12,000 lbs (100" roll width) says 12 RL and Planned order #2 for 12,000 lbs (50" roll width) says 24 RL?


Thank you for any feedback you may have on this request

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2 Answers

Alfred Becker
Dec 15, 2017 at 02:06 PM

Got to use batches and LO-VC (=variant configuration).

The material master, BOM, routing, classes & characteristics are all fed into APO PDS (or PPM).

You have to model the various dimensions or UoM of your product as characteristics of the requirement (=the sales order item) using VC. Also the conversion factors between UoM need to be modeled as a characteristic. The individual UoM conversion factors can be calculated for each individual product configuration by using so called object dependencies of LO-VC.

Coming back to your example above: This will result in the correct calculation of number of rolls based on overall quantity and width. If I'm not mistaken, the APO product view can be tweaked to show material characteristics, too, which would be in your case the number of rolls. Please note that MRP is executed in base UoM always, and that is true for PP/DS, too. In your case that would still be "lbs".



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Hello Alfred,

Thank you very much for taking the time to respond. I have a few clarifying questions.

1) When you say "Got to use batches and LO-VC", are you referring in general to using the Batch Specific Unit Measure functionality (specifically "Product Unit of Measure")?

2) If so, is Batch Specific Unit of Measure functionality integrated with APO? Is there any specific ECC configuration required to integrate Proportion/Product Unit of Measure with APO?

I have read extensive documentation on Batch Specific Unit of Measure configuration setup such as example link below but I am not aware of any specific points around integration of this functionality with APO

Thank you again


Batch Specific Unit Measure can help only once batches were created. But I understood your issue occurs during planning phase already. Material characteristics can describe the requirement but also the valuation (of existing batches).

I talk about the phase of requirement definition: When you enter the required material plus configuration in the sales order, it can already perform object dependencies and calculate additional UoM and the respective conversion factors if you had defined those as characteristics, too. Using object dependencies allows to model the logic of UoM conversion. As a result alternative UoM (e.g. expected number of rolls based on length and weight) is available as a characteristic in VC and can be CIFed to APO.


Thank you Alfred and Happy Holidays. You have confirmed my understanding that Batch Specific UOM would not be applicable to this requirement as the timing in the process of my question is at planned order creation time (ie before batches are created).

I also understand what you are suggesting regarding ability to have a VC object dependency calculate a characteristic such as "Number of Rolls" and have that displayed in APO product view. However that will not address our requirement (which i probably should have explained more clearly in the above.)

The specific requirement we are looking for is as follows:

Requirement : If user manually creates an APO planned order in an alternate UOM (ie RL unit), the system should convert to Base UOM (lbs) based on a conversion factor that is specific to the Roll Width characteristic value entered (see table below).

We don’t want the system to use the standard (single) Material Master conversion value. We understand the conversion factor could be calculated dynamically in a characteristic via object dependency.

In above example - if user creates planned order for 10 RL of 100" width rolls, base UOM order qty should be 10,000 lbs If user creates planned order for 10 RL of 50" width rolls, base UOM order qty should be 5,000 lbs. Current system behavior is that it only refers to the single (static) Alternate UOM conversion in Product master.

Excluding APO, this question applies to an ECC scenario as well such as when creating a Purchase Order in ME21N. If user wanted to create a PO in RL, we would want the system to convert to base UOM in the same exact way as described above (ie by reading a conversion factor specific to the Roll width entered).

Summary - In either APO or ECC scenario, when user creates an order (planned order, Purchase Order), what options exist for the system to read a conversion factor specific to characteristics entered (in our scenario, "roll width") and to use that order specific conversion factor (ie not single Material Master conversion factor) when calcuating back to the Base UOM

This is what we are trying to understand. Thank you again very much for your time

Andy Yeri Jan 18 at 04:43 PM

Here is my take on the requirement you've highlighted:

  1. In APO:
  2. Products that are fully configured/predefined (with all the characteristics predefined) will have no issues adopting the characteristics from the Product Master & giving you the correctly calculated value on the Product View screen, regardless of the UoM (base or alternate) & like Alfred mentioned, you can switch the UoM on the Prod View & it adopts the quantities accordingly.
  3. For Products that are partially configured: currently I do not see a way in the system to read the characteristics & calculate the right quantities. My take on that is the lack of ability to write VC object dependencies (like we do in ECC) directly onto the PDS' (& to have them kick-in as we create Planned Orders/P Reqs) is the undoing.
  4. In ECC:
  5. Assuming you've allowed configuration of stand alone Purchase Orders in SPRO. Per Alfred's initial response, with the use of the right characteristics & some heavy object dependency coding you should be able to have the right conversion available from the UoM you create the Order with. I see no issues there.
  6. For Planned Orders in ECC, I am actually not sure that I've seen a place in SPRO where I can enable manual configuration (read as entering characteristics needed) of a Planned Order.
  7. The fully defined (those with characteristic values for width, diameter etc) products should not have an issue, either creating Planned Orders or Purchase (they have all the values on them anyways, so should calculate out correctly, without issues).

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