SAP Ariba Network can seamlessly connect to different SAP business suits with the help of add-ons that comes with Ariba Network integration 1.0. In this article we will explore SAP Ariba Configuration with SAP ERP.
Why integration is needed?
Integration of SAP Ariba with SAP ERP allows the users to manage the procurement process in SAP Ariba with the integration of the business records already deployed in the SAP ERP system. The integration of Ariba P2P and P2O includes the data load from the ERP system to the Ariba system. It covers data related to suppliers, organizations, and purchases.
The integration provides the full transparency of transactions of data between the system reflecting the changes and modifications in both systems.
How does the process works?
For the purchase of goods, the process starts with the creation of PR’s (Purchase Requisition) for catalog and non-catalog items, this then undergoes for approval of the related approver. Once the PR is completely approved by the designated approver, the PO (Purchase order) is created in SAP Ariba. The process flow of PR creation to PO creation takes place at Ariba platform.
Once the PO is created in the Ariba platform, the PO data is replicated to ERP system. The process comes to end with the release of the invoice.
Software pre-requisites for integration
- SAP ERP system 6.0 or higher
- SAP Ariba Downstream 13s or higher
- SAP Ariba Integration Toolkit
- SAP NetWeaver PI 7.1 or higher (optional )
Different ways of integration
There are four ways of performing SAP Ariba Configuration with SAP ERP:
- File-based integration
- Web services-based integration
- Direct connectivity
- Using middleware connectivity
The data is exported from the Ariba Procurement Solution in *.csv format. It is then processed by ABAP program and then replicates it to SAP ERP. After the data replication to the ERP system, the status of the transaction is fetched from ERP and then update back to SAP Ariba. SAP Ariba supports *.csv file format for import and export.
This integration use middleware’s like SAP PI, SOA to establish integration. SAP PI is by default available and it does not require any manual configuration for setup, whereas using SOA manual configuration is needed. SOAP messages are generated based on WSDL and are forwarded using SAP PI.
Direct Connectivity Integration
In the direct connectivity process, master data (in *.csv format) is transferred from SAP ERP to SAP Ariba system in the form of SOAP messages.
Mediated Connectivity Integration
In the mediated connectivity integration process, both SAP PI and SOAP messages methods can be used (data can be passed as SOAP messages).
To use SAP PI to exchange the data, you need to specify the sender and receiver communication channel. For SAP PI/PO integration, Ariba has provided Ariba Network Adapter commonly now as add-ons which allow to send and receive data in cXml format.