Entering content frameFunction documentation Time-Dependency of Master Data Locate the document in its SAP Library structure


You can maintain master data for cost centers, cost elements, activity types and business processes with time-based dependencies. You can make changes at any time for any time interval. The saving of data is also time-dependent. This can result in multiple database records for a master data record, with different information stored in each database record.


SAP has determined the times when a field may be changed - these cannot be changed. The following time-dependencies are possible:

The corresponding fields are only valid for the whole period of time in which the object exists, and can only be changed during this period.

Example: Hierarchy area

You can change the corresponding fields as often as you wish, and they are also valid for one ore more days.

Example: Lock indicator

The corresponding fields are valid for one period (for example, a month) and are not changeable during this time.

Example: Profit centers

The corresponding fields are valid for a whole fiscal year and cannot be changed during that year.

Example: Cost center currency

For fields that are time-dependent on a daily basis, you can set an indicator to specify whether they are to be saved on a time basis (and so become historically relevant) in customizing for the given master data. See, for example, Specifying Time-Dependent Fields for Cost Centers.

Fields with period-based and fiscal year-based time dependencies are always historically relevant.


Note that time-dependent storage can lead to large volumes of data. Therefore, define only important fields as historically relevant.


If the contents of all fields marked as historically relevant are identical in consecutive analysis periods, the SAP System replaces the multiple data records during master data maintenance with a data record for all the single record periods.



You create an object (such as a cost center) valid from 01.01.1996 to 31.12.1999, with the manager Brown. You then change the object by defining a different cost center manager for the period from 01.01.1997 to 31.12.1997. You marked the Manager field as historically relevant during Customizing.

The SAP System saves three data records. To display these in master data maintenance, select the Person responsible field and choose Drilldown:


You proceed as with the previous example, but change the Person responsible field without defining a new analysis period. The SAP System creates only one data record for the Person responsible field from 01.01.1996 to 31.12.1999, Manager: Smith.


You have set the indicator for Person responsible to not historically relevant. Proceed in the same way as the previous example. The SAP System creates only one data record for the Person responsible field from 01.01.1996 to 31.12.1999, Manager: Smith.

The change document lists the master data field changes. To display the individual changes, choose Environment ® Change documents ® For field/For cost center in the master data maintenance, for detailed information on each change. Double click to call up the detail information for each change.


You have created a cost center with the following data:

This entry has the advantage that the cost center can be processed in the SAP System until 31.12.2000 inclusively.

On the other hand, you have created a cost center with the following data:

This has the disadvantage that cost center 4110 must be created again if you require it for the following fiscal year.

This rule applies to other objects in Cost Center Accounting, such as cost elements, activity types and business processes.


In the example above, the analysis periods correspond to year boundaries according to the calendar year. You can, however, define periods not based on the calendar year.

This is especially necessary when you have used the fiscal year variant in Financial Accounting to define a postponed fiscal year, an over-long fiscal year or a shortened fiscal year. In these cases, the master data is not based on the fiscal year variants.

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