Increased Data Quality and Material Master Data Governance by Integrating Artificial Intelligence into SAP ERP Landscapes

apsolut and Creactives Join Forces

Bielefeld & Verona, 18 September 2023

The apsolut Group, multiple award-winning SAP Procurement Partner of the Year, and Creactives, the recognized leader in applied AI for Procurement and Supply Chain, have officially announced a new strategic partnership. Through this collaboration, procurement and supply chain organisations can easily integrate the most powerful AI tools into their SAP ERP landscapes.

The challenge: ever increasing complexity
There are multiple reasons why complexity among material master data in large procurement and supply chain organisations is ever increasing – from ambiguous or erroneous product categorisation to multilingual and siloed data in multiple ERP systems, not to mention the continuously growing number of catalogue items.

The impact: lack of transparency
Let us take a look at a scenario that can severely impact a company’s success: Procurement staff may not know that two different ERP material numbers belong to precisely the same product due to language barriers and different naming conventions. If you do not know that colleagues in other countries procure the same things, even from the same supplier, you cannot fully leverage your negotiating power. All of this drives a lack of inventory visibility and leads to unnecessarily high stock levels and committed capital. Also, in times of supply chain disruptions (blocked Suez Canal, Covid), it is always good to know that another plant could help you out with specific materials to avoid production shutdowns.

The solution: applied AI, fully integrated with SAP
apsolut Fluid is an innovative platform that creates a layer between Creactives’ TAM (Technical Attributes Management) and a multi-SAP ERP architecture, making the SAP ERP world (SAP ECC or S/4HANA) and TAM a fully powered AI solution for Material and Service Master Data Governance (MMD).

  1. GET CLEAN: Through Fluid and TAM, MMD is cleansed, harmonised, and enriched. Duplicates are identified and connected across ERP systems, languages, commodity groups, and catalogues, giving you REAL spend transparency. Cleansing the material records is also essential, before migrating an ERP system to S/4HANA.
  2. STAY CLEAN: Master Data is evolving daily, so governing this evolution is mandatory to avoid getting back into a non-harmonised situation. TAM is the leading system for creating and governing material and service records. AI-powered automation tools ensure consistently clean and not newly duplicated data. Fluid ensures that all data is kept in sync with the SAP ERP landscape.

In addition, Creactives offers AI-powered data assistants for end users to create purchase requisitions in SAP systems. Matcher and MG Prompt facilitate easy requisitioner discovery of the items they need within existing master data or catalogues. If there are no matches, they properly categorise the new requisition, helping Procurement optimise processes and PO flows by minimising incorrect categorisations that would otherwise lead to wasted time and money.

The result: absolute negotiating power
“This use case explains perfectly why we call Fluid an innovation enablement platform”, says Oliver Zügel, Principal at apsolut. “It is proof that best-of-breed procurement ecosystems are the future.” Adriano Garibotto, Chief Sales & Marketing Officer at Creactives adds: “From our point of view, this collaboration is a game changer. And it is not only about savings. If you reach a level of total visibility, you will get absolute negotiating power.”

apsolut and Creactives are currently running a project based on the Fluid/TAM architecture for a globally active mechanical engineering company.

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