SAP® Pur­chase In­fo Re­cords

My next blog post is dedicated to the purchasing info records in SAP ® R / 3 systems. These info records are the intersection of material and vendor. It defines which material can be ordered from which vendor with which conditions.

Figure 1: Info Record

Re­quired Mas­ter Da­ta

For the generation of a purchasing info record, the master data of the vendor and the material are used.

Figure 2: Required Master Data

Via the SAP transaction code "XK01", a supplier can be created. It is important that the purchasing view of the vendor master record is maintained too. It outlines the relevant purchasing organization like the terms of payment, delivery and minimum order value.

Figure 3: Vendor Master Data

A new material can be added with the transaction “MM01”. In addition to the basic data (e.g. name) also the purchasing view is important. Therein the order unit, delivery tolerances and reminders are set.

Figure 4: Material Master Data

To create a purchasing info record, you can now use the newly created master data or the existing master records of course. With the SAP transaction “ME13” you can enter the creation view of the purchasing info record.

Figure 5: Purchase Info Record

To this combined material and vendor master data, the negotiated conditions (e.g. price, surcharges, discounts, cash discount) are entered in the purchasing info record. The conditions may be time-dependent or time-independent. As the name suggests, the time-dependent conditions are set to a certain validity period. The time-independent are valid as long as the purchasing document has to be valid.

Cre­at­ing a new pur­chase re­que­si­tion

If you create a new purchase requisition on the material, the source determination returns the potential vendors. The source determination takes into account following sources:

  • Outline Agreements
  • Purchase Info Records
  • Supply Plant

To identify a unique source, the validity and the ranking of the sources can optionally be entered in an order book or using the quotation. Should you still have identical sources; the outline agreements get the preference.

If the info record is the source of procurement, following figure is showing how the automatic pricing works.

Figure 6: Automatic Pricing

When source determination is fully implemented at the company system, the buyer can thus rely on the best terms and conditions for procurement.

In the purchasing info records the order price history is updated by the activation of the info update indicator and thus material prices are saved from the existence of the info record. This is among other things a very useful data analysis approach, with which one can identify blatant price developments in the purchasing info records. Atypical price fluctuations of the material or constantly rising prices can be taken as an opportunity to negotiate new terms or to change supplier.

As in many areas of SAP, it makes sense to consider segregation of duties topics too. No employee should be able to insert all necessary master data (material, supplier, info record) and to initiate a purchase requisition. In general the number of employees who are allowed to make changes in these areas should be limited, because the source determination could be affected.

In conclusion, we can note that the purchasing info records are a good support for the purchase. Very often it brings the company favorable terms or prioritized delivery advantages. Similar to outline agreements, the mindset "always been that way" should break through and reconsider agreements on necessity and usefulness. For example, the costs of materials in the production procurement in the area of renewable energy reduced drastically. "Old" agreements may thus have a direct impact on the competitiveness of a company.

If you have any questions on this topic or want to place a comment, feel free to contact me on info@dab-gmbh.de.

Best Regards Florian Popan

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