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Function documentationProblem Management


Problem management processes include investigating disruptions to be able to provide solutions and fixes, and, therefore, prevent disruptive events from reoccurring. Problem management aims at preventing incidents from happening and minimizing the impact of incidents that cannot be prevented. Processors identify problems as being the root cause of one or more incidents.

Problem messages contain all the information that relates to a disruptive event. If several incidents have been reported for the same problem, the incidents can be assigned to the problem. Processors can also create problem messages separately, without any reference to incidents, to prevent disruptive cases. The problem message can be linked to the incident messages to monitor the processing progress. You can forward the problems to SAP support or create follow-up transactions.


Structure of a Problem

A problem consists of the header details, which are organized in individual groups, and additional assignment blocks. You can customize which assignment blocks are displayed according to your requirements.

Header Level

In the header details, you specify the general data that is valid for the entire problem. This includes, for example, the following data:

  • General Data, for example, the following:

    • Description: Title of the problem

    • Support Team and Message Processor: If configured, when you enter data in one of these fields, the system suggests suitable values for the other. If this function is configured, only use the Details assignment block to enter support team and processor, that is, do not use the Business Partner assignment block.

  • Processing Data, for example, the following:

    • Status: To change the status, enter the new status and save the problem. The selection of the status depends on the configuration of your system. Ask your system administrator what status to select for which action.

    • Impact and Urgency: Calculate the recommended priority

    • Priority: To overwrite the recommended priority

  • Dates: The creation and change date; specify by when the problem should be solved.

  • Category: To categorize the problem using multilevel categories. Depending on the category, the system can execute some actions automatically.

    Solution Category: The processor categorizes the cause for a problem.

  • Relationships: To relate the problem to other messages, for example, the following:

    Related Knowledge Article: To assign an answer for a problem, for future reference

  • Reference Objects: To specify the object that is affected by the problem

Assignment Blocks

In the assignment blocks, you specify additional data, for example:

In the Related Incidents assignment block, the incidents are displayed that are connected to the problem.


You perform the following tasks to support this process:

  • A processor creates a problem message and can assign it to incidents.

  • The processors process the problem message. While processing the problem message, the processors perform various activities to provide a solution.

  • When the problem is solved, the problem message is confirmed.

  • The processors can process the related incident messages.

Creating Problems as Follow-up Transactions From Incidents

If a processor cannot find a solution to an incident message, they can create a problem message as a follow-up transaction. The relevant data from the incident message, such as the business partner, description, priority, or category, is copied to the problem message.

After saving the problem message, the system shows the problem message as a related problem in the incident message in the Transaction History and Details assignment blocks, in Relationships area.

The system locks the incident messages for further processing because the processor is looking for solutions to the problem.

Assigning Problems to Incidents

You assign an existing problem message to an incident message as follows:

  1. Choose an incident message to which you want to assign a problem message.

  2. Choose Edit to switch to edit mode for the incident message.

  3. You have the following options to assign the problem message:

    • To set the system to show problem messages that are not yet closed but that are in the appropriate category, choose Start of the navigation path More Next navigation step Find Related Problems End of the navigation path.

    • To choose a problem message manually or use the search function, in the Details assignment block, choose Start of the navigation path Relationships Next navigation step Related Problem End of the navigation path.

    You can use the search function to find a problem message. Choose Start of the navigation path IT Service Management Next navigation step Find Next navigation step Problems End of the navigation path.

  4. Save your entries.