Transfer Orders 

A transfer order is a document used in the Warehouse Management (WM) system that contains all the information needed to carry out the physical movement of material into the warehouse, out of the warehouse or from one storage bin to another within the warehouse.

A transfer requirement contains information about a planned movement of stock in the warehouse. The corresponding transfer order contains the information the system needs to carry out the movement, that is, the physical movement of a specific quantity of material from one place to another. Goods are placed into a storage bin, removed from a storage bin, or transferred from one storage bin to another within the warehouse using transfer orders. Transfer orders are also used to track the logical transfers of stock. Logical transfers of stock occur, for example, when goods are released from inspection and made available for general use. These logical transfers are called posting changes in WM.

Confirming Transfer Orders

You can set up your system to require that certain stock movements are subject to confirmation. When you confirm a transfer order, you inform the system that it has been processed and that the goods have arrived at the intended destination. Depending on the movement type, not all transfer orders must be confirmed. Generally, this setting is meaningful when a transfer order is created prior to the physical transfer and the movement needs to be verified. For more information, see Confirming Transfer Orders.

Confirming Transfer Orders with a Difference

If the planned quantity (target quantity) differs from the actual quantity of stock that is moved, a difference quantity exists. When you confirm a transfer order with a difference, you must enter the actual quantity and/or the difference quantity into the system. The difference quantity is then posted automatically to an "interim storage area for differences" (see Confirming Transfer Orders and Stock Differences).

Cancelling Transfer Orders

You can cancel an entire transfer order or individual items in a transfer order. Cancellation is only possible if the transfer order (or item) has not yet been confirmed. If a transfer order has already been confirmed, you can restore the original stock situation by creating a new transfer order.

Control and Monitoring

Once they have been carried out, transfer orders also have a control and monitoring function since they document movements in the warehouse (see Warehouse Controlling).

Transfer Orders as Inventory Documents

For certain inventory methods (for example, zero stock check, inventory based on stock placement), transfer orders serve as inventory documents. In this case, when the actual quantity is confirmed (after the first putaway into a storage bin), it is updated in the system as the inventory quantity.

Transfer Orders used in Lean WM

In Lean WM, you create and confirm transfer orders for deliveries to pick stock from fixed bins in the warehouse that are not managed by the WM system. Stock that is handled using these transfer orders has no quant numbers since these bins are not managed by WM (see Using a Transfer Order as a Pick Order in Lean WM).

General Information about Creating Transfer Orders

It is possible for you to create a transfer order without referring to any other document. However, you typically create transfer orders by referring to another source document from WM or from other SAP application components. A source document can be a

When you create a transfer order manually, either from a source document or without a reference document, you normally use the tasks available from the Transfer order creation menu.

From within the display tasks for transfer requirements you can access the tasks to create a transfer order. Within the display tasks, you can select as many source documents as you want and then create all the transfer orders for these documents at one time. You can also group transfer requirements together under a single group number and create transfer orders from this group (see Posting a Goods Receipt Based on a Purchase Order).

For information about creating transfer orders based on posting change notices, see Stock Transfers and Replenishment.

Tabstrips and Table Controls

Tabstrips (tabs) and table controls have been included in most screens to improve the flexibility and ease of use of the corresponding functions. The use of tabs separates the data on each of the screens into separate "folders" (similar to card index files) that logically organize the data into active work lists, inactive or inaccessible data and processed data. The table controls make it possible for you to organize and display only the fields you want to see on the screen and, in some cases, to sort available data into the desired order for processing. Before using these screens regularly, you need to ensure that the fields you want to see are actually displayed and deactivate the ones you do not want in the display.


On most screens, icons have been added as pushbuttons at the bottom of the screen. You use all of these buttons (such as Select/Deselect all, Delete or Sort) to manipulate the data in the tab lists and tables with table controls located immediately above those buttons.

For the screens that use these buttons, the following applies:

Select all

Selects all entries in the above table

Deselect all

Deselects all entries that are marked


Deletes all entries in open entry fields for the marked lines

Sort up

Sorts all items in the selected column in ascending order

Sort down

Sorts items in the selected column in descending order


Moves selected items from inactive folder to active work list.


Moves selected items from active work list to inactive folder

Fields on Transfer Order Creation Screens

When you create transfer orders manually or when manual intervention is required, some fields are open for data entry and others cannot be changed. For data which cannot be changed, the fields are shaded. Some fields only appear when they are appropriate for the process (for example, the Batch field only appears during TO creation if a material is managed for batches).

What Information Does a Transfer Order Contain?

Transfer orders contain the following information:

The information that the transfer order needs comes from several sources:

How is a Transfer Order Structured?

The transfer order consists of a transfer order header, which contains general information about the entire order, and one or more items.

Transfer Order Header

The transfer order header contains the transfer order number and the date that it was created and confirmed. It also identifies the transfer requirement or delivery on which it is based and the movement type. If the transfer order has been printed, the Trfr order printed field is selected.

Transfer Order Item

A transfer order can have one or several items. The number of items contained in a transfer order depends on how many storage bins the system accesses in order to reach the total quantity of goods needed for the stock removal requirement or how many bins are needed to store the goods (stock placement).

An item within a transfer order contains two or three subsections that indicate the direction of the stock movement. Each item has one source storage bin and one destination bin. An exception to this rule is when more stock is picked from a storage bin than is needed. In this case, an additional subsection a return storage bin exists that identifies the bin to which the remaining quantity is to be returned.

This subsection contains the source storage bin and the quantity of material that is being transferred. It indicates the storage bin from which goods are to be picked (goods issue) or an interim storage area (such as the goods receipt area) from which goods are taken to be putaway in the warehouse.

This subsection contains the quantity of material that is being transferred and the storage bin into which the goods are to be placed. For example, it may contain a storage bin in reserve storage that has been selected for a putaway or an interim storage area (the goods issue area) for a stock removal.

The system generates a return subsection when a quantity remains after the material needed is removed from a storage bin. This can happen if, for example, when a complete pallet is removed from which only a portion of the stock is picked. In this case, the remaining quantity can either be returned to its original storage bin or transferred to another one.

See also:

Releasing Stock from Inspection