Take Continuous Inventory - SAP WM

Purpose
With the continuous inventory method, you take inventory for a certain number of storage bins in a storage type. The inventory can take place at any time during the fiscal year. Continuous inventory has the following advantages over the annual inventory count at the end of the fiscal year:

  • The effort and costs for the inventory is not concentrated on a certain day or days but is distributed over the entire year. This means that the warehouse supervisor can plan the workforce needed for the workload in the warehouse more accurately.
  • Inventory can be conducted during slow times in the warehouse, such as during summer vacation periods.
  • With a reduction in the effort required at the end of the fiscal year, you can respond better to problems that might arise during a year-end closing.
  • When an inventory is carried out on a continuous basis, up-to-date information about the correspondence between the warehouse stock and the book inventory is always available.

Prerequisites
Inventory methods are defined for each storage type. To define a continuous inventory for a storage type, see Activities Physical Inventory Define Types per Storage Type in the Warehouse Management section of the Implementation Guide (IMG) documentation.

Process Flow
To run a continuous inventory, you need to complete the following steps in the order displayed:

  1. Plan the inventory by selecting storage bins, for which you want to take inventory.
  2. Create the system inventory record
  3. Activate the system inventory record
  4. Print the warehouse inventory list
  5. Take physical inventory in the warehouse.
  6. Enter the inventory results
  7. Close the inventory
  8. Process differences in Warehouse Management (WM) and record them in Inventory Management (IM).

Selecting Storage Bins
When selecting storage bins for inventory, you can only select storage bins for which there are no open transfer orders.

  1. Choose Logistics Logistics Execution Internal Whse Processes Physical Inventory In Warehouse Management Physical Inventory Document Create Continuous Inventory from the SAP menu.
  2. On the initial screen you must enter the warehouse number and storage type. You have several possibilities for selecting storage bins. In the second section of the screen there are selection criteria fields that you can use to control the extent of the inventory.
  3. Choose Program Execute to continue processing.

The system displays a list of all the storage bins that you selected. By default the list is sorted by the number of quants. You can also sort the list by date or by storage section. The system has selected all storage bins the marked for further processing. You can use the tasks in the Edit menu to select and deselect the storage bins.

Creating the System Physical Inventory Document
Once you have selected the storage bins for the inventory, you must create the physical inventory document. To do so, choose List _ Create documents from the menu bar of the list screen when you select the storage bins. The system issues a message that the inventory document has been created and places an asterisk in the first column.

What Happens in the System?

  • The Inventory planned indicator for the storage bin is set. At this point the storage bin is not blocked.
  • The Inv.status field in the header of the physical inventory document is set to N, not counted.

Activating/Changing the Physical Inventory Document
Before you can continue with the inventory you must activate the physical inventory document. However, this can be done only when there are no open transfer order items for the storage bins in the physical inventory document. In other words, all transfer orders for the storage bins must be confirmed.

  1. Choose Logistics Logistics Execution Internal Whse Processes Physical Inventory In Warehouse Management Physical Inventory Document Change from the SAP menu.
  2. On the initial screen enter the warehouse and the number of the physical inventory document. Then choose ENTER.
  3. To activate the inventory document, choose Inventory document Activate.

The system returns to the initial screen with a message that the inventory document has been activated. In the change task for the physical inventory document you can also add new items to the physical inventory document (new bins to be inventoried) or delete items from the physical inventory document. You can create and activate the physical inventory document in a single step. On the screen that lists the selected storage bins, choose List Activate (instead of List Create).

What Happens in the System?

  • The Inventory active indicator for the storage bin is set.
  • The storage bin is blocked for all movements.
  • The Inv.status field in the physical inventory document has not changed (set to N).
  • The Inventory active indicator in the physical inventory document is set.

Printing the Physical Inventory Document
To print the physical inventory document

  1. Choose Logistics Logistics Execution Internal Whse Processes Physical Inventory In Warehouse Management Physical Inventory Document Print Whse Inventory List from the SAP menu.
  2. On the initial screen enter the warehouse number, the number of the physical inventory document, and a printer ID. If you only want to display the inventory list on the screen, deselect the List field.
  3. To continue, choose ENTER.

You set the parameters for printing the physical inventory document in Customizing for Warehouse Management under Logistics Execution Warehouse Management Activities Physical Inventory Define default values.

Closing the Inventory
To complete the inventory process in WM, you must clear the inventory and unblock the storage bins. These two steps can be done with a single task. You also use this task to process any differences between the counted results and the quantity that was actually in the storage bin.

  1. Choose Logistics Logistics Execution Internal Whse Processes Physical Inventory In Warehouse Management Physical Inventory Document Overview from the SAP menu.
  2. On the initial screen you must enter the warehouse number and at least one of the selection criteria. Choose Program Execute to continue.
  3. The system displays a list of physical inventory documents that meet the selection criteria. For example, you can select all inventory documents in a storage type for which the inventory items are "partially counted". From this list you can select the desired inventory document or documents for further processing.

  4. Select the desired documents and choose Environment Clear documents from the menu bar.
    The system goes to the task for processing differences in WM. All the storage bins for the selected physical inventory document are displayed.
  5. Select the bins you want to process and then choose Clear.
    The system returns to the list of physical inventory documents with a message giving the number of storage bins that were cleared.

What Happens in the System?

  • The Inventory active indicator in both the storage bin and the physical inventory documents is set to blank, which means that no inventory is planned or is taking place.
  • The storage bin is unblocked.
  • The inventory data in the storage bin is updated.
  • The Inv.status field in the physical inventory document is set to L, which means that the inventory has been cleared in WM.

At this point, if there are no differences, the inventory process is complete. However, when differences are found between the counted amount and the book inventory, they must be processed in WM. The book inventory must be updated in both WM and IM.

Processing Inventory Differences in WM
When you enter the results of the inventory count, you inform the system that there are differences between the counted amount and the book inventory. You record these differences in WM to reflect the actual stock in the storage bins. At the same time negative and/or positive bin quantities are also recorded on the interim storage area for differences. These differences must be cleared from the interim storage area and posted in the Inventory Management (IM) component.

Process
The following steps are a suggestion of how you can use the tasks within WM to process differences.

  1. Enter inventory results with a difference between the counted amount and the book inventory.
  2. When you enter the inventory results in WM and there is a difference between the counted amount and the book inventory, the system issues a message that warns you about the difference and displays a window. While processing inventory differences in WM, this step gives you a chance to change the amount you entered in case you entered the amount incorrectly. WM also gives you the opportunity to perform a recount of materials in the storage bin.

  3. Display a list of the differences.
  4. Carry out a recount of the item or items in the system inventory record for which the differences are improbably high.
  5. Reprint the warehouse inventory list and recount the storage bins in the warehouse.
  6. Enter the results of the recount.
  7. Close the inventory.
  8. Clear differences from WM and record them in the IM component.

Displaying a List of Inventory Differences
If you feel that differences should be investigated, you can request a recount of the bins. To find
out where the differences are:

  1. Choose Physical inventory Evaluations Difference list from the WM menu bar.
  2. On the initial screen specify the warehouse and the storage type. Choose Program Execute.
  3. The system displays a list of the items in system inventory records for which there is a difference between the counted amount and the book inventory.

Recounting Inventory Results
You need to indicate which system inventory record items are going to be recounted.

  1. Choose Physical inventory Count result → Recount from the WM menu bar.
  2. On the initial screen you must enter the warehouse number and the system inventory record.
  3. Additionally, you can enter a percentage or monetary value as a deviation threshold on this screen. Choose ENTER to continue. The system displays a list of items in the system inventory record.

  4. From the list, select the storage bins for which you want to carry out a recount. Choose Recount → Start recount to start the recount.
  5. The system issues a message that a recount was created for the selected items in the system inventory record. A version number is assigned to the recount. The Inv.status field in the system inventory record is reset from Z (counted) to A (count incomplete). The system cancels the setting of the Print completed indicator in the system inventory record.

Reprinting the Warehouse Inventory List
To reprint the warehouse inventory list

  1. Choose Physical inventoryInventory document Print from the WM menu bar.
  2. On the initial screen be sure to enter the version number of the recount, in addition to the warehouse number and system inventory record. Choose Continue. The system sets the Print completed indicator in the system inventory record.

Entering the Results of the Recount
To enter the results of the recount

  1. Choose Physical inventory Count results → Enter from the WM menu bar.
  2. On the initial screen, be sure to enter the version number of the recount, in addition to the warehouse number and system inventory record. Choose Continue.
  3. On the data entry screen, you enter the results of the recount in the Counted qty column.
  4. To post the results to the data base, choose Inventory count Post. The system resets the Inv.status field in the system inventory record from A (count incomplete) to Z (counted).

Closing the Inventory with Differences
To close an inventory with differences, you use the same task that is described in Closing the Inventory. After you have selected the bins that you want to clear and have chosen Environment Activate documents (see step 4 in Closing the Inventory), the system issues a message that displays the number of the transfer order that it created to post the difference.

In addition to creating a transfer order, the system updates the status in the system inventory record. The inventory data in the storage bin record is updated and the storage bin is unblocked. If you display the transfer order, you see that a quantity of material (the difference between the counted amount and the book inventory) is transferred from the interim storage area for differences and placed into the storage bin in which the difference was found.

Clearing Differences
To clear the inventory differences from the interim storage area in WM and to post the differences in IM:

  1. Choose Physical inventory Clear differences Warehouse Management from the WM menu bar.
  2. Enter the system inventory record number on the initial screen, choose Display list and then Differences Clear from the list displayed. If all items have not been counted in the system inventory records, you may need to exit this function and count the stock in the storage bins concerned before continuing.
  3. Choose Physical inventory Clear differences Inventory management from the WM menu bar.
  4. On the initial screen enter the warehouse number and interim storage type for inventory differences (999 in the standard system). You have several possibilities to specifically identify the storage bins with inventory differences. To continue choose Program Execute.The system displays a list of differences, which are ready for further processing.
  5. Select the bins you want to clear and choose Clear (on the Applications toolbar) or Save to clear the differences. The system displays a list with the material documents that were created. If the program is executed without errors, you can branch to the detail list by selecting (clicking the mouse on) a material document number. If there are errors, the system lists the errors that occurred.

Lot Numbers
When you clear inventory differences in Inventory Management, the system also takes stock with lot numbers into consideration. When you use this function, the quantity in the inspection lot is adjusted accordingly.

Instead of clearing excessive quantities with an inspection lot during inventory counting in Inventory Management, these quantities are added to the existing inspection lot. The system does not create a new inspection lot.

Entering the Inventory Results in WMS
Once the inventory list has been printed, the warehouse worker can begin the physical inventory count in the warehouse. The warehouse worker enters the counted results in the column provided in the list. After the warehouse worker has entered the counted results on the inventory list, you can enter these results in the system.

  1. Choose Logistics Logistics Execution Internal Whse Processes Physical Inventory In Warehouse Management Count Results Enter from the SAP menu.
  2. On the initial screen, enter the warehouse number, the warehouse inventory list number, and the date of the inventory. As an option, you can also enter the name of the person taking inventory on this screen. The system then copies this name into the item counted. The system only displays the name on the two-line display.
  3. If the count data is loaded into the system using IDoc WMIVID01, the Name is taken from the new IDoc field. If you work synchronously with mobile data entry (MDE) scanning devices that function as remote terminals, the system copies the name used when logging on into the field. For recounts, the name can be overwritten with a new name. When you change an inventory count document, the system only changes the name when the quantity in the corresponding item is changed. Choose ENTER.

  4. On the data entry screen you enter the counted results in the Counted qty column. You can define the format of this screen and the data that it contains in the inventory list parameters. See under Logistics Execution Warehouse Management Activities Physical Inventory Define default values in the implementation Guide (IMG) for Warehouse Management IMG documentation for more information about this topic.
  5. If a storage bin is designated as empty and the counted result shows no stock, you can select the item in the E column. In this way you confirm that the storage bin is actually empty. If a storage bin is designated as empty but the counted result shows a quantity, enter the material and the quantity counted. If a storage bin has more bin quantities than are listed in the data entry screen, choose Edit New Entries List or Individual to add the material and quantity. If you enter a counted amount that is different than the book amount, the system may display a message and a difference window, depending on the size of the difference.

  6. Post the results of the inventory count to the data base.
    The system issues a message that the counted results were created in the system for the specified system inventory record.

What Happens in the System?
The Inv.status field in the system inventory record is set to Z, which means that the inventory count has been completed. An inventory can also have the status of A, which means that the count has been started but not completed (such as in the case of a recount). All other statuses related to the inventory for the storage bin and in the system inventory record are unchanged.

Using Batch Input for Inventory Count Results
When entering inventory count results, you can enter all information on a single screen without using dialog boxes. This makes it possible to enter count results using batch input (screen sequence: 201, 202, 202....). If not all count results are entered, the dialog box that appears when you save data is suppressed during batch processing. This way, the program that creates the batch input file does not have to take into consideration whether all the data necessary for a particular screen has been entered or not.

If you process data in an external system and then want to load it into the SAP System, you must write a program that transfers this data in batch input format to the corresponding SAP transaction Li11. Manually, the process is carried out in WM as follows:

  1. After you create and activate an Inventory record, choose Logistics Logistics Execution Internal Whse Processes Physical Inventory In Warehouse Management Count Results Enter from the SAP menu.
  2. Enter the mandatory warehouse number, inventory record number and count date and choose Single record entry.
  3. Enter the material and count data and choose ENTER.
  4. After you make the last entry, save the count results.

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