Meet TINA – the new Westernacher solution for improved invoice handling based on SAP TM

September 27, 2018 – Bahadir Ince, Senior Team Lead SAP Transportation Management

In our digitalized world it is still a challenge for companies across all industries to match and verify incoming invoices. Thresholds are accepted to avoid high workflow costs. SAP TM delivers a strong solution to calculate charges based on containers, pallets or even parcels or shipments. To take the charge and settlement process to the next level, we would like to introduce TINA – “Transportation Invoicing Assistant” – supporting you with invoice verification in SAP TM.

Learn more about TINA and how it can support your daily business processes in the following article.

The contract management component of SAP TM provides a comprehensive solution to ease the process of maintaining contracts or rate sheets with subcontractors in the TMS. The logic of charge calculation is based in agreement master data:

Invoice Verification Tool for Transportation Management SAP TM AddOn
Figure 1: Charge Management Overview in SAP TM

The Freight Order has detailed visibility for the calculated amounts. The shipment information e.g. cargo weight and volume, are in the available charge lines. The calculation can be package-based or based on the entire shipment. For both cases you can still add charges or rework the calculated amounts.

Invoice Verification Tool for Transportation Management SAP TM AddOn
Figure 2: Freight Order charge calculation based on an Agreement, Calculation and Rate Tables

The invoicing process starts with the creation of a Freight Settlement Document. This can be done manually from the Freight Order or automatically via a Batch Job. The invoice verification takes place in the SAP ERP system afterwards. Generally, the department for Rate Management is working in the SAP TM system and not in the SAP ERP system and they have the knowledge about the calculated amounts.

“ask TINA” to check the carrier invoice against your Freight Order in your SAP TM system!

Invoice Verification Tool for Transportation Management SAP TM AddOn
Figure 3: Process flow between SAP TM and TINA

TINA is an invoice verification tool embedded in the SAP TM solution. The following use case gives a short introduction about TINA.

The carrier invoice will be created in TINA via a webservice or Excel upload or the operator can create it manually (see graphic 4). TINA automatically matches the correct Freight Order data and the charge item positions to the correct invoice. The calculated amount in the Freight Order was €32.00 but the carrier invoice is created with €40.00.

Invoice Verification Tool for Transportation Management SAP TM AddOn
Figure 4: Create the carrier invoice via Webservice, Excel or manually

If there is a mismatch, TINA jumps into red light status, shows an error massage and provides all the Freight Order and carrier invoice details. With the traffic light system, every error is visible and easy to handle. This recalls the error handling for the operator, which can be done directly from TINA and the mass correction of orders is done in the shortest time.

Invoice Verification Tool for Transportation Management SAP TM AddOn
Figure 5: Invoice verification between Freight Order and carrier invoice

In the configuration object, all common carrier charge types are mapped to the internal SAP TM charge type. With the charge type mapping, we will reduce the carrier charge types to a handful of SAP TM charge types.

The configuration object also provides us with the opportunity to learn new functionalities of what the system should automatically do for the operator, saving time and money. The last step of the release process can be done directly out of TINA.

Invoice Verification Tool for Transportation Management SAP TM AddOn
Figure 6: Successful posted carrier invoice in TINA

TINA is a fully automatic tool for the invoice verification process within SAP TM. It is embedded in the SAP Business Client and uses the POWL technology to handle high volume businesses. TINA can be used for all common SAP TM Versions and it is upgradeable too.

Invoice Verification Tool for Transportation Management SAP TM AddOn
Figure 7: TINA POWL

What is in it for you?

  • Short implementation timeline
  • Templates for carrier on-boarding
  • Generic approach to upload invoices
  • Charge Type mapping for top CEP provides
  • System supported verification workflow
  • Expandable for the use of other mode of transport
  • Full transparency of all data with an embedded automatic tool
  • Fast value creation

Besides the LSP parcel scenario, TINA also provides an invoice verification procedure for the Forwarding Order process. If you are interested, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to help!

BAHADIR INCE
Senior Team Lead SAP Transportation Management

E-Mail: [email protected]