The following document includes frequently asked questions related to workflows in purchase order:

Section 1: “An exception was raised” error message appears while saving a purchase order. 

Q1.  Why is an exception raised while saving a purchase order save? 

Reason 1: Workflows are very old 

  • Solution: Copy the old workflows to new workflows. Deactivate, and delete the old workflows. Hierarchy must be maintained correctly while activating the new workflows. 

Reason 2: Exchange rate is not maintained for the all currencies used in the current workflows 

  • Solution: During simulation all the workflows will be checked before picking the one suitable workflow for the purchase order. Exchange rate for all the currencies used in all the present workflows must be maintained. 

Reason 3: Workflow is configured with Recipient as Agent determination by BAdI, and the BAdI is not implemented: 

  • Implement BAdI Determination of Workflow Agents for Purchasing Documents or Change the workflow configuration to use a different recipient.

Section 2: Email notification for purchase order workflow 

Q2. What all situations qualifies to trigger an email for a purchase order? 

  1. For Approver: As soon as the workflow is triggered, the approver will be notified through an email to approve the purchase order. 

The template SWF_CRT_NOTIFY_RECIPIENTS should be copied in the app Maintain Email Templates, and name mandatorily as YY1_00800238_CRT_19.  

Note- This template will only contain the purchase order number. 

  1. For Deadline Email Notification: Once deadline is reached, an email will be triggered to the approver. 

A custom email template needs to be configured for this in purchase order workflow. This template can be configured with detailed information from the purchase order. 

Note- Custom email template can be created by copying the sample template MMPUR_PO_WFL_DEADLINE_EMAIL. 

  1. After Approval or Rejection: As soon as the purchase order is approved or rejected, an email will be triggered to the creator of the purchase order. 

Template SWF_WORKFLOW_COMPLETE_NOTIFY should be copied in 2 templates and named mandatorily as YY1_00800238_COMPLETE_POSITIVE and YY1_00800238_COMPLETE_NEGATIVE respectively.   

Section 3: Flexible workflow is switched OFF. 

Q3. How to activate flexible workflow for purchase order? 

Answer: Navigate to below path with user having SAP_BR_BPC_EXPERT role: 

  1. Implementation cockpit/Manage your solution 
  2. App: Sourcing and Procurement 
  3. Subapplication area: Operational Procurement 
  4. Select Purchase Order Processing 
  5. SSCUI: Activate Flexible Workflow for Purchase Orders 
  6. Check the box for NB document type.

Q4. Why approval details are shown in preview mode in approval details tab even when purchase order is not sent for approval? 

  • Either the purchase order is being edited or the purchase order is saved while flexible workflow is not active for the corresponding document type. 
  • Solution: Activate the flexible workflow. 

Q5. Why approver name is shown as “More than one approver”? 

  • When purchase order is in approval, and if flexible workflow is switched offthen approvers name will be shown as “More than one approver”. It is recommended to complete all the work items of all the purchase orders before switching off the flexible workflow. 
  • Solution: Activate the flexible workflow. 

Q6The app Manage Purchase Orders shows status of purchase order as sent / not yet sent / output in error, and approval details are missing in the general information tab? 

  • Object page takes the status from both workflow and output management. As workflow is switched off, only output status is shown. 
  • Solution: Activate the flexible workflow.

Q7. Why the flexible workflow is not triggered for the purchase orders? Also, the flexible workflow tab is not available in Create / Change purchase order advanced application. 

  • The workflow is not triggered because flexible workflow for the selected document type is not activated.  
  • Solution: Activate the flexible workflow.

Section 4: General FAQ 

Q8. Why does the restart of workflow happen even when fields are not enabled in SSCUI? OR 

       How can restart of workflow be controlled? 

Answer: SSCUI has the subset of fields on change of which workflow restart can be controlled, apart from this there are other fields for which workflow restart will still happen. 

See the configuration documentation available in Manage Conditions to Restart Flexible Workflow.  

Q9. Why is the work item not available for approval when the flexible workflow for purchase order is configured with Agent determination by BAdI? 

Answer: Business Role for the approver user is not maintained correctly. Please maintain the business user for the approver mentioned in the BAdI Determination of Workflow Agents for Purchasing Documents implementation. 

Q10. Why is wrong workflow getting picked for the purchase order? 

Answer: The first active workflow which matches the start condition will be picked up. If you have multiple workflows with same workflow start condition or multiple workflows meeting the purchase order condition, then define the order of workflow as per your business need. 

Q11. From where is the due time is picked in the email notification? 

Answer: Due time will be picked from deadline defined for the step condition as mark step as overdue in the app manage workflows for purchase order. 


Hopefully, these FAQs will help you in understanding the following:
  1. Exceptions raised while saving a purchase order.
  2. Various email notifications triggered from a purchase order workflow.
  3. Dos and Don’ts for switching off purchase order workflows.


Author Since: April 19, 2021

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