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Can You Develop a New T-Code for Me, Please? No, We Can’t!

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Do you know the best way to handle ongoing new T-Code and development requests? Should the CIO approve allocating the resources for business requirements as they pop up or should he thoroughly inspect each application first?

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Round One: User Shoots

Recently I had to listen to a very experienced user complain about a CIO who didn’t want to hire a Developer to help him with a new report and T-Code. The user was very angry because he really needed the report for his work and the “stubborn” CIO didn’t want to understand that. In fact, this experienced and motivated user was on his way to talk to the boss to explain the situation and ask for assistance with the much needed report.

Round Two: CIO Strikes Back

Later, I happened to be speaking with the CIO, so I asked him, “Why are you making this user’s life so difficult? Especially since you know he’s an expert?” He replied, “I’m not. I just asked him if there was an existing way in the SAP system to do this instead of developing a new report and a new T-Code, and he got mad. I totally understand that it’s much easier to develop new reports and T-Codes that will exactly answer users’ needs. But the overall costs are so high that they should convince me first that there’s no standard approach in the system as an alternative, before we take the step of allocating more resources.”

This answer reminded me of another post I wrote about The Curse of the Unused: Z_UNUSED_TCODE and Y_UNUSED_ROLE.

Different Companies: Different Approaches

It’s amazing that different companies have totally different approaches. Some will immediately approve requests for new business needs, especially if it’s for increasing sales (surprisingly, this is the most common reason ;-) ). Other companies are more focused on “doing things right” and require a detailed request for new development, signed and approved by the appropriate professional people.

Don’t get me wrong, both approaches have their advantages and their down-sides. Answering a business need fast by developing a new solution can increase revenues quickly and make the business-people happy, but it can result in unnecessary development and maintenance resources.

On the other hand, looking for a standard solution within the enormous amount of existing reports, T-Codes and queries is quite hard, takes time and requires the seeker to have a lot of knowledge and experience. Also, if the results don’t turn up with a suitable solution, it will probably create a lot of frustration because of the efforts made… but at least you know that development is really required. When you know it’s really required, accurate development keeps the system efficient and you’re not wasting development & maintenance resources.

And You?

So how is it in your organization – are business requirements being approved as they pop up or do you thoroughly inspect each application before developing a new solution?

Dror Aviv joined Xpandion in 2010 as a programmer in the R&D team. Combining technical knowledge with implementation skills, Mr. Aviv serves today as a Senior Implementation Advisor, bringing with him extensive hands-on experience from the field. He works closely with customers at their sites, and is an expert in defining customer needs, translating them into business process and implementing them via ProfileTailor Dynamics’ suite of products.

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