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SAP R/3 for Everyone: Step-by-Step Instructions, Practical Advice, and Other Tips and Tricks for Working with SAP

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SAP R/3 for Everyone: Step-by-Step Instructions, Practical Advice, and Other Tips and Tricks for Working with SAP


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The first book to provide practical instruction on working with SAP for the non-technical end-user

° SAP has more than 10 million end users, yet there is not a single book on the market for them
° Uses real-life examples, plain non-technical language, and lots of illustrations
° Based upon the authors' years of experience training end-users in SAP


  • Copyright 2006
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/4"
  • Pages: 320
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-186085-2
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-186085-8

SAP R/3 for Everyone is the nontechnical user's guide to working with SAP R/3, the leading business enterprise software product in the world. Written and road-tested by experienced SAP R/3 users and trainers, this book saves typical SAP R/3 users time and trouble by providing them with the universal skills needed to work with any module of this complex software.

SAP R/3 can be used effectively by anyone who can perform a handful of simple procedures that are employed in nearly every SAP R/3 transaction. The authors explain these procedures in plain English, using illustrations and real-world examples.

After a brief explanation of the architecture and operation of SAP R/3, readers get step-by-step instruction in

  • Logging on and off, managing passwords, and customizing the SAP application window and screens
  • Navigating between screens with menu folders, transaction codes, and the menu bar
  • Setting up customized favorites folders with quick links to the initial screens of transactions and other useful resources
  • Understanding the four basic transaction types
  • Working on initial screens, including tips and techniques for entering codes, searching for codes, customizing initial screens, and using multiple selection screens and selection options
  • Customizing output reports with filters, sorts, sums, and display variants
  • Exporting output reports to Microsoft Excel and Word and e-mailing output reports to other SAP users

Practical and jargon-free, SAP R/3 for Everyone provides readers with the skills and confidence they need to efficiently conduct any business activity with SAP R/3.

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SAP R/3 for Everyone: Navigating to Initial Screens With the Favorites Folders

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Table of Contents


About the Authors


Introduction: Design and Operation of the SAP.

    Application Window

    Menu Bar

    Standard Toolbar

    Title Bar

    Application Toolbar

    Status Bar

    Central Work Area

    Popup Screens

    SAP on the Web


Lesson 1: Logging On and Logging Off.

    Logging On

    Procedure: Logging On With the SAP Logon Pad

    Procedure: Logging On With a Desktop Shortcut

    Logging Off

    Procedure: Logging Off

Lesson 2: Working With SAP Sessions.

    Controlling the Application Window Geometry and Location

    Creating Multiple Application Windows

    Procedure: Creating Multiple Application Windows

    Killing a Session

    Procedure: Cancelling a Transaction

    Customizing the Layout of Application Windows and Screens

    Procedure: Customizing With the Options Command

    Procedure: Customizing With the New Visual Design Command

    Customizing the SAP Easy Access Screen

    Procedure: Customizing the SAP Easy Access Screen

    Creating Desktop Shortcuts

    Procedure: Creating Desktop Shortcuts

Lesson 3: Entering User Profile Data.

    Procedure: Entering User Profile Data

Lesson 4: Changing Your Password.

    Changing Your Password

    Procedure: Changing Your Password When You Log On

    Procedure: Changing Your Password After You Log On


Lesson 5: Navigating to Initial Screens With the Menu Folders.

    Navigating With the Menu Folders

    SAP and User Menu Folders

    Searching for Transactions

    Procedure: Searching for a Transaction With Keywords

Lesson 6: Navigating to Initial Screens With the Favorites Folders.

    Working With the Favorites Folders

    Adding Favorites Folders

    Procedure: Creating a Favorites Folder

    Adding Transaction Links to the Favorites Folders

    Procedure: Adding a Transaction Link With Its Code to the Favorites Folder

    Procedure: Adding a Transaction Link Without Its Code to the Favorites Folder

    Adding Web, Intranet, and E-mail Links to the Favorites Folders

    Procedure: Adding a Web or an Intranet Link to the Favorites Folders

    Procedure: Adding a Link to Your External E-mail Application in the Favorites Folders

    Changing the Names of Favorites Folders and Links

    Procedure: Changing the Name of a Folder or Link in the Favorites Folders

    Deleting Favorites Folders and Links

    Sharing Your Favorites Folders

    Procedure: Downloading Your Favorites Folders

    Procedure: Uploading Favorites Folders

Lesson 7: Navigating to Initial Screens With Transaction Codes.

    Navigating With Transaction Codes

    Procedure: Selecting Transaction Codes From the Command Field List Menu

    Identifying Transaction Codes

    Procedure: Displaying Transaction Codes on the SAP Easy Access Screen

    Procedure: Identifying Transaction Codes With the Menu Bar

    Procedure: Identifying Transaction Codes With the Status Bar

    Searching for Transactions by Transaction Codes

    Procedure: Searching for Transactions With Keywords

Lesson 8: Navigating Between Screens With Menu Bars.

    Navigating from the Initial Screen of a Transaction

    Navigating from the Output Screen of a Transaction

    Exploring SAP


Lesson 9: Entering Codes and Text.

    Tips for Entering Codes and Text

Lesson 10: Searching for Codes.

    Short Hit List Screens

    Multiple-Tab Search Screens

    Procedure: Searching for a Code With a Single Search Criterion

    Procedure: Searching for a Code With Multiple Search Criteria

    Tips for Using Multiple-Tab Search Screens

    Structure Search Tree

    List-Display Search Screens

Lesson 11: Entering Codes on Multiple Selection Screens.

    Design and Operation of a Multiple Selection Screen

    Procedure: Copying Multiple Codes Onto the Multiple Selection Screen

    Using the Multiple Selection Screen: An Example

    Using the Multiple Selection Button

    Procedure: Searching for Multiple Codes for the Multiple Selection Screen

Lesson 12: Using Selection Options on Data Entry Fields.

    Attaching Selection Options to Data Entry Fields

    Procedure: Attaching a Selection Option to a Data Entry Field

    Procedure: Removing a Selection Option From a Data Entry Field

    What Do the Green Selection Options Do?

    What Do the Red Selection Options Do?

Lesson 13: Working With Screen Variants.

    Adding Data Entry Fields With the Dynamic Selections Button

    Procedure: Adding More Selection Criteria to an Initial Screen

    Creating Screen Variants

    Procedure: Creating a Variant of an Initial Screen

    Changing a Screen Variant

    Procedure: Changing a Screen Variant

    Procedure: Changing a Screen Variant 2

    Calling Up a Screen Variant

    Procedure: Calling Up a Temporary Variant

    Deleting a Screen Variant

    Procedure: Deleting a Screen Variant

    Procedure: Creating a Single Default Data Entry on an Initial Screen


Lesson 14: Sorting, Filtering, and Summing Up Line-item Reports.

    Sorting and Grouping Line-item Reports

    Example 1: Single-Column Sort of a Line-item Report

    Procedure: Single-Column Sort of a Line-item Report

    Example 2: Multiple-Column Sort of a Line-item Report

    Procedure: Multiple-Column Sort of a Line-item Report

    Example 3: Single-Column Sort of a Hit List

    Filtering Line-item Reports

    Example 1: Filtering the Line-item Report of the IH08 Transaction

    Procedure: Filtering a Line-item Report

    Example 2: Filtering the Line-item Report of the Cost Center A/P/V Transaction

    Procedure: Filtering Positive and Negative Values in a Line-item Report 1

    Example 3: Filtering Positive and Negative Values on the Usual Filter Screen

    Summing Up Data Columns in Line-item Reports

    Procedure: Summing Up Data in a Column of a Line-item Report

    Procedure: Grouping and Subtotaling Data in a Line-item Report

Lesson 15. Display Variants for Line-item Reports.

    Accessing the Display Variant Functions

    The Change Layout Screen

    Creating a Display Variant

    Procedure: Creating a Display Variant for a Line-item Report

    Saving a Display Variant

    Procedure: Saving a Display Variant

    Applying a Display Variant

    Procedure: Applying a Display Variant After the Fact

    Deleting a Display Variant

    Procedure: Deleting a Display Variant

    Working With Display Variants on Other Screens

Lesson 16. Exporting Line-item Reports to Microsoft Excel and Word.

    Front-Door Exports

    Procedure: Exporting to MS Excel With the Option/Office Integration Button

    Procedure: Exporting to MS Excel With the List Menu

    Back-Door Exports

    Procedure: Back-Door Export of a Line-item Report to MS Excel

Lesson 17. Sending Line-item Reports via SAP E-mail.

    The Create Document and Send Screen

    The Upper Subscreen

    The Lower Subscreen

    Entering and Searching for the Names of Recipients

    Procedure: Searching for Recipients

    Working With Distribution Lists

    Procedure: Creating Distribution Lists

    Procedure: Searching for Distribution Lists

    Reading SAP E-mail Messages

    Procedure: Reading E-mail in the Business Workplace

    Procedure: Storing or Deleting an E-mail Message

    Sending E-mail From the Business Workplace Screen

    Procedure: Creating and Sending New E-mail

    Procedure: Replying to E-mail

    Procedure: Forwarding E-mail

    Coda: The Basic Transaction Types

    Transaction Type 1: Displaying an Object

    Transaction Type 2: Displaying a List of Related Objects

    Transaction Type 3 : Creating an Object

    Transaction Type 4: Changing an Object

Appendix: Create a Plant Maintenance Order (IW31).



Untitled Document

Welcome to the world of SAP! You are now embarking on a journey into the workings and use of SAP R/3, the leading business enterprise software in the world.

This book is written for the non-technical user of SAP R/3: that is, an average person in a company who has perhaps had some experience with desktop applications like MS Word and Excel but little or no experience with more complex enterprise software. Its purpose is to provide these users with detailed instructions for working with this outstanding and versatile software product.

These instructions do not address any specific purpose, such as working with budget and cost data or managing the inventory of a warehouse. Rather, they describe general or universal procedures for working with any part of the software for any purpose. We firmly believe that a solid grasp of these general procedures and the development of the skills for executing them are the real secret for learning and managing SAP R/3 and using it effectively at your job.

In addition, this book is not intended to be comprehensive. SAP R/3 is very complex in its design and operation, and a comprehensive description of this software would require a much larger -- not to mention more expensive -- bible of a book that most people could not lift. Rather, this book describes the techniques and procedures that are most frequently employed by non-technical users when they work with SAP R/3. We decided on its contents after years of using this software, after consulting with other experienced users (the so-called super users) like ourselves, and after many hours in the classroom teaching it to people like you.

Finally, this book is not intended to be a technical treatise about SAP R/3. If you were looking for instructions about programming, developing or implementing the software at your workplace, you bought the wrong book. We will not describe the inner workings and architecture of the software (except very briefly in the following pages), because we have found that such information does not help the typical user work with the software any more effectively. We will also avoid the use of technical jargon throughout this book, and instead will say our peace in plain simple English. We will not use a 25-cent word when a 5-cent word will do.

But before we describe the contents of this book, we must devote some words to the origin, design and operation of SAP R/3.

What Is SAP R/3?

SAP R/3 is a package of integrated applications called modules that are used to record and track the activities and costs of doing business. Its roots extend back to 1972, when five system analysts, all former employees of IBM in Germany, created the software for collecting large volumes of business data in a single computer, and then processing this data in real time, when the user needs it. Real-time processing was a particularly novel development at the time, because the computers of the 1970s were slow, lumbering machines that required minutes and sometimes even hours, to process large volumes of data.

Since that time, SAP has grown from a small regional company to the leading provider of business enterprise software in the world. At last count, SAP R/3 is now installed at 84,000 locations in 120 countries around the world, and it is used by more than 10 million people every day. SAP is now the world's third-largest independent software vendor, and it is still growing strong.

The great strength and utility of SAP R/3 are due to a large degree to its architecture or structure, which consists of functional Modules, the SAP database and the graphical user interface. We use the term system throughout this book to describe this tri-part assemblage of software.

The functional modules are discrete software packages which are dedicated to specific tasks, such as accounting, payroll management and inventory control. They are typically installed in Application servers, which are computers that are capable of rapidly processing or crunching large volumes of data and then assembling the output of their work in a format that can be read by the user.

The database is the actual collection of business data. This data is stored inside database servers, which are computers with huge amounts of storage memory and the capacity to rapidly exchange data with the application servers.

The graphic user interface or GUI appears on the desktops of the computers or clients that you use to access the software. The centerpiece of the GUI is the application window (called a session by SAP), where you enter commands and data on scenes or screens with your mouse and keyboard.

There are many modules in the complete version of SAP R/3, but most business enterprises do not use all of them. Rather, they purchase and install only those modules that they need to do their business. The selected modules are then integrated or tied together to one another and the database servers and clients by programmers, and the screens are customized or configured to fit the enterprise s needs. Once they are integrated, the boundaries between modules vanish, and they work with one another as a single, seamless software package. This aggregation of modules is also very flexible: the enterprise can often add more modules whenever they want, so that the software grows as their business needs grow.

SAP Transactions

The word transaction describes a single business activity that is conducted with SAP R/3. Some examples of end-user transactions are:

  • Creating a purchase requisition
  • Generating a budget report for a company department
  • Scheduling the shipment of a material to a plant
  • Recording the activities of a maintenance job
  • Entering employees weekly work hours
  • Displaying the yearly sales for a product

Every transaction progresses through a four-step workflow of actions, commands and events. The typical workflow begins when the user logs on the SAP system (Step 1). This action calls up the SAP Easy Access screen, which is the default home page for the software. The user works with the elements on this screen to call up or navigate to the initial screen of a transaction (Step 2), where they instruct the software on its specific objectives and then execute it (Step 3). A few seconds later, the output of the transaction appears (Step 4) in one of two forms:

A confirmation that some business process, such as the creation of a requisition or the entry of an employee s work hours into the database, was accomplished. This message usually appears at the bottom of the initial screen.A display of data from the database. This usually appears on its own output screen.

A good bit of the communication between the SAP R/3 software and the end-user is accomplished during Steps 3 and 4 of this SAP workflow via technical object codes.

A technical object is any thing which is monitored and tracked by SAP R/3. This includes tangible objects, such as employees, consumable materials, equipment, and physical plants, and intangible ones, such as work orders, purchase requisitions and shipping orders.

Every technical object has a unique object code, which is assigned to it when its specifications are entered in the SAP database and which is the primary shorthand means of identifying it. There are literally thousands of such codes in every SAP database, but fortunately, the software provides a way to search for them, so you do not have to memorize or record them.

Organization and Contents

The body of this book consists of 17 lessons on the general use of SAP R/3. They are grouped into four parts, which correspond to the SAP workflow:

  • Part I, Getting Started, describes the procedures for logging on and off the SAP R/3 software, customizing the SAP application window and screens to suit your preferences, entering personal and logistical data about yourself, setting default values for the use of the software, and managing your password.
  • Part II, Navigating Between Screens, describes three methods for navigating from the SAP Easy Access screen to the initial screens of tranactions, and a fourth method for navigating between initial and output screens.
  • Part III, Setting Up Initial Screens, describes the procedures for entering and searching for object codes and creating customized versions of initial screens.
  • Part IV, Working with Output Reports, describes the procedures for customizing the output reports of certain transactions and e-mailing them to other SAP users.

These lessons are preceded by the Introduction, which describes the design and operation of the SAP application window and its screens, and followed by a Coda, which presents a simple model of the four basic transaction types that are commonly executed by end users.

The instructions in the lessons of this book were written around and illustrated with screens from version 4.7 of the SAP R/3 software. However, they can also be applied to SAP 4.5 and 4.6, which are very similar in their design and operation to SAP 4.7. And with a little effort, they can also be applied to SAP 4.0, which differs slightly in its screen design but not its operation.


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