Activating Batch Management in SAP

The batch management in SAP functionality has dramatically revolutionized the precision and efficiency of how production-centric industries carry out their mundane day to day operations. In essence this ERP feature of the SAP system permits companies to effortlessly keep track of the diverse materials they utilize, right from their procurement to the eventual sales. Using the batch determination function such business establishments can keep abreast of with a wide variety of materials they utilize. That is if the batches in which they are clustered in have been classified in the system.

Activating Batch Management in SAP

What exactly are batches?

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In a typically process manufacturing business setting, any production run is usually conducted in batches. This consequently means that any materials that are entered into the production process are logistically handled by been assigned unique specifications. Which definitely goes to say that batches can be deemed to be the exact quantity of materials that are processed within a firm’s particular production run. As well as been a subset of the total number of materials a business entity might have in stock.

At what levels are unique batch number assigned?

The distinct batch number that is assigned to these materials can be specified at 3 different levels of the production process. These are a combination with the exact materials and the plants they are processed, in combination with a specific material number or at the client level.

Material and plan

In the first option batch numbers are reassigned for any material that might have different specifications across the diverse plants in a firm. Or for a stock that passes through several plants in batches holding the same number regardless of the batches bearing different specification. In this scenario the batch quantity usually assumes the specification of the destination batch.

Material number

In the second option the batch normally has the same specification for all the various plants a material may be stored in. This means that the same batch number can be reassigned with different specifications for every single material.

Client level

Finally, at the client level the same batch number can only be assigned only once within the whole client.

Batch definition is linked with material definition

Within the SAP system the definition of a batch is dependant with the exact definition of the material in question. Thus the exact parameters utilized in making a batch reproducible are the same as the parameters for the distinct material associated with it. The system requires that batch records should only consist of data that is unique to any given batch. This data is of course the distinct specifications or some may say characteristics which can identify that a batch is non-reproducible. The master data configuration permits business entities to effortlessly plan and implement diverse models of a specific product individually.

Materials handled in batches can only be planned at the material level

In the SAP R/3 system materials are planned at the material level as opposed to the batch level. Which means that batch master records are totally dependant material records. Consequently business establishment must first plan materials master records to primarily specify exactly which materials will be processed in batches.

Batch management indicators

To which end the SAP system provides various indicators that are meant to define distinct batch requirements. That can be easily evaluated from the several views, which include: the materials master records, general plant data, work scheduling, sales and distribution, warehouse management as well as storage 1. In essence even if an indicator is visible on all these views, it still remains the same. Additionally, when an indicator is directly set to one specific view it can still be viewed on all the rest.

How are batch master records created

Batch master records can be created directly whenever the relevant employee is managing a firm’s master data. On the other hand, such workers can specify a unique batch number whenever the very first movement of any given batch is initiated. And the system will automatically create the corresponding batch master records.

Batch management and the classification system

Batch management in this ERP system is closely associated with its classification system. This therefore means that batch classification works hand in hand with the system’s classification setting. For instance, the exact specifications for any batch master record are solely based on their distinct batch classification. The system stores these attributes as a batch’s characteristic value. It is then needless to say that effectual batch management operations require classification data organization to consist of the associated batch classification. Further, precise classification of batches is mandatory for users to be able to utilize the batch determination function.

How useful is this batch management & classification correlation?

One of the biggest boons of this criteria is the fact that it enables the generation of all specifications related to all materials processed in batches. This presents to a business establishment accurate information. Which can be used to effectually as well as conveniently evaluate the exact particulars of all the batches created in the system. This can go a long way in effortlessly dealing with any pertinent issue that may arise in the production cycle such as quality checks, complaints and any other related production issues.

Batch classification in SAP

All the classes utilized for batch classification are assigned to the class type 022/023. Essentially all materials and their associated batches must be classified under the same class, which makes sure that all specifications are utilized according to the relevant batches. It is also worth mentioning that these batch attributes can be passed down in different production levels through inheritance.


This ERP’s batch management functionality offers a lot of benefits to companies that deal with process manufacturing production such as pharmaceutical, healthcare, foodstuffs or even cosmetic industries. Which include traceability of goods in the event of complaints or even product recalls. As well as facilitating for rapid search of products through expiration dates. Batch management in SAP can also help such business establishments to meet the ISO certification requirements.

Marissa Hart is the Lead Author & Editor ShareMe. ShareMe is a blog focused on SharePoint Online. SharePoint Online delivers the powerful features of SharePoint without the associated overhead of managing the infrastructure.