Two approaches to SAP business transformation

Business changes can create the requirement that a plant is assigned to a different company code. These can include changes in the legal structure for tax purposes, a reorganization for process improvement or the divestiture of a portion of the business that currently operates in the same company code as lines of business being retained.

Whatever the reason to change the company code assignment of a plant, there are two approaches to the change. One is to use the standard SAP system functionality and the second is to use third party services, such as Datavard Transformation Suite. We will discuss both methods. In addition, some of the key considerations when making the change will be discussed.

Standard approach using SAP functionality

Using standard SAP functionality to change the company code of a plant involves creating a new plant in configuration. Any other changed organizational elements such as sales organization or purchasing organization are also created. The new plant is assigned to the desired company code and all relevant master data and open/in-process transactional data is recreated for the new plant and company code. This approach closely resembles a reimplementation of SAP for the changed plant.

The standard approach is appropriate when the amount of activity in the plant to be changed is small. For example, if there are not many sales orders or purchase orders that are open at any given time, then this approach is a good fit.

However, when a large number of open transactions exist in the affected plant, the standard approach can cause significant disruption to business operations. Sales order and purchase order numbers which have been communicated externally will be changed. Since the plant number is changing, users will need to change what they enter in the system. In this case, where the high volume of activity makes the change difficult for the business, the Datavard Transformation Suite approach should be considered.

Datavard Transformation Suite approach

Datavard Transformation Suite uses a combination of standard functionality and special conversion programs.

Financial data such as customer and vendor open items and assets are transferred to the new company code using standard transactions. This maintains the auditability of the financials.

Logistics data like sales orders and purchase orders are transferred to the new company code using programs that convert any data elements having to do with the company code assignment of the plant. These may include company code, business partner, profit center, etc. After the conversion, the logistics data appears as it has always existed in the new company code. Converting the data at the table level using ABAP programs allows the business to continue processing existing sales order and purchase orders. For example, a purchase order that existed on Friday afternoon before the conversion can be received on Monday morning after the conversion using the normal transactions and procedures and the same purchase order number. The changed data causes the posting to occur in the new company code. The impact on the business and external partners is significantly decreased.

Datavard Transformation Suite can also often be used to split plants and other organizational elements such as sales organizations and purchasing organizations if required.


The business environment sometimes requires changes to the organizational structure maintained in the SAP system. These changes can most often be accomplished with minimal impact to the business using Datavard Transformation Suite. However, it is important to note that the details of the required conversions depend on the specific functionality and processes used in the system. The details and approach for your system are determined after an analysis done by experts experienced in these changes.

If you are facing this challenge let us know. One of our experts can discuss the options with you: