A precise planning and controlling mechanism is of the utmost importance for the execution of competitive order processing with guaranteed efficient and timely delivery to the customer of the required order quantity. Unforseen problems, such as production deficits or increased demand can have critical consequences for order processing and must be brought under control as soon as possible.
Product allocation is a function provided by the R/3 system for carrying out these control options intended to help your company to avoid critical requirement and procurement situations. This should enable you to keep production to a minimum at the same time as allowing you to react quickly to bottlenecks and changing market situations.
In the R/3 system, product allocations represent an ordered allocation of production for certain periods. Product allocations can be created according to various criteria (i.e., customer, regions).
Product allocations are created in the logistics controlling area in the planning hierarchy (Logistics® Logist. controlling ® Flexible planning ® Planning create/change ® Planning type: COMMIT for SAP standard planning type). Product allocations are always divided right up to the lowest level in the hierarchy. The basis for the planning hierarchy is info structure "S140", which SAP issues as the standard info structure. It determines the criteria of the hierarchy. You can define your own info structures in Customizing for LIS (Logistics General ® Logistics Information System ® Reporting ® Standard Analyses ® Change settings).
When creating product allocations, make sure that you use version number "000".Because updates are carried out for this version number.
If a product allocation of 5000 pieces were to be entered at the material level as depicted in the diagram below, it would be automatically distributed among the lower levels
(= consistent planning). Changes are possible at every level, but the other levels are still adjusted automatically.
As of Release 3.0F, it is possible to carry out an availability check against product allocations. The check is still carried out if neither the availability check nor transfer of requirements are activated in Customizing. This ensures, for example, that when production is low, the first customer does not get the full amount, resulting in following sales orders not being confirmed or being confirmed far too late. The check is carried out on the basis of the confirmed quantity from the ATP check against the corresponding product allocation.
To get reliable information and to recognise critical situations, the actual requirements are compared with the planning product allocations throughout the entire product allocation period.
To carry out availability check against product allocation, certain requirements must be met:
- Material master
- In the material master, the product allocation determination procedure must be entered in the basic data screen for general data.
- Statistics update
In Customizing for the Logistics Information System, statistics updating must be set for the information structure. This is required at customer, material and header level. The update group must also be maintained in Customizing for the Logistics Information System.
- In Customizing for SD, the settings must be made for availability check against product allocation. You will find the necessary steps described in the Implementation Guide in section "Availability check against product allocations". This is where, the necessary Customizing activities for the statistics update are described.