Early Warning System (EWS) is built on SAP logistics information structure that allows you to monitor & receive alerts for specific configured exceptions. It can help various logistics departments personnel’s like production manager, procurement manager, material planner & Quality supervisor to optimize their business processes & have better decision making.
In real world; due to lack of coordination & availability of data at real time, numerous supply chain problems rises. Following and numerous other business processes can be avoided if simple functionality of EWS is implemented:
1. Negative sales trend for particular group of products lasted for couple of weeks; however; senior management only got aware of this trend in quarterly sales meeting.
2. The scrap quantity of high value product never exceeded more than 3% but yet it already crossed threshold value of 7%. Production manager only came to know about it long after the loss already incurred.
3. Procurement of certain raw materials shows a decreasing trend but procurement manager was unware of this due to which he was unable to take advantage of falling price by ordering more.
4. A vendor repeatedly misses delivering target which in turn effected inventory of raw material. Management only came to know of this development once significant production/procurement losses had already incurred. Timely information would help management find other source of supply.
Configuring EWS is fairly simple with absolute no involvement of ABAP; the first step is identification of key figures (Production Scrap, Delivery date etc.) you want to monitor for any deviation, monitoring of key figures can be configured as trend (positive or negative) or by threshold value. You can then group these exceptions based on color-coding, the last step is to define periodic analysis in which we set the frequency based on which the user will be informed if any deviation has occurred (E.g. Daily, weekly or monthly)
As you can determine it’s fairly easy functionality that can be implemented and high benefits can be reaped out of it.
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