SAP Proof of Delivery – The only Tutorial you will need

Short yet in-depth tutorial on SAP Proof of Delivery or POD process. Get to know why it is needed and solve associated problems.

In our previous series of articles, we extensively explored a range of business scenarios that seamlessly integrate with SAP through simple configuration. Now, let’s embark on a fascinating journey into the topic of SAP Proof of delivery, a process that can be effortlessly streamlined with just a few steps.

Imagine this: You’ve eagerly awaited an important package, and finally, it arrives in the hands of a reliable courier like FedEx or UPS. As you recall, the courier guy would diligently collect your signature upon delivering such packages, ensuring a sense of security and accountability.

However, the delivery process doesn’t end there. It’s only considered complete once solid proof of its execution is captured. That’s where the magic lies within the SAP perspective, uncovering a realm of possibilities and efficiency.

So buckle up and get ready for an exciting adventure as we dive deeper into this captivating topic!

SAP Proof of Delivery First Blog image

What is SAP Proof of delivery?

When it comes to generating sales and ensuring customer satisfaction, there are several important contractual obligations that you must fulfill. One of these obligations involves capturing a signature from the warehouse store manager before you can proceed with billing the customer. Look at the below representation of SAP POD Process flow to understand the difference vis-a-vis the regular order to cash cycle.

POD Process in SAP Explained- Image GoUpSkillMe

POD Process in SAP Explained

You will notice above that Invoicing is not allowed till either POD is done, or, the POD Window expires.

This step not only provides the customer with an opportunity to verify the quantity and check for any damages in the delivered shipment, but it also serves as a crucial component of the Proof of Delivery process, ensuring a smooth and reliable transaction.

If you are familiar with partner functions within the SAP system, you are aware that this signature check is activated at the Ship to party level.

This means that when you are trying to invoice a customer for a delivery made to a location where Proof of Delivery has been activated, SAP will automatically verify if all the necessary documentation, including the captured signature, has been completed.

POD is activated at Ship to party level

POD is activated at Ship to party level

It is important to note that simply completing the Post Goods Issue (PGI) won’t be sufficient in these cases, as the Proof of Delivery process requires additional steps to be followed.

Now, let’s delve into the details of how you can activate and optimize the Proof of Delivery process within the SAP system, allowing you to streamline your operations and enhance customer satisfaction even further.

When it comes to generating sales and ensuring customer satisfaction, there are several important contractual obligations that you must fulfill.

One of these obligations involves capturing a signature from the warehouse store manager before you can proceed with billing the customer.

This step not only provides the customer with an opportunity to verify the quantity and check for any damages in the delivered shipment, but it also serves as a crucial component of the Proof of Delivery process, ensuring a smooth and reliable transaction.

If you are familiar with partner functions within the SAP system, you are aware that this signature check is activated at the Ship to party level.

This means that when you are trying to invoice a customer for a delivery made to a location where Proof of Delivery has been activated, SAP will automatically verify if all the necessary documentation, including the captured signature, has been completed.

It is important to note that simply completing the Post Goods Issue (PGI) won’t be sufficient in these cases, as the Proof of Delivery process requires additional steps to be followed.

Meaning of POD Process in SAP

Meaning of POD Process in SAP

Now, let’s delve into the details of how you can activate and optimize the Proof of Delivery process within the SAP system, allowing you to streamline your operations and enhance customer satisfaction even further.

How to configure SAP Proof of Delivery ( POD ) Process

Unlocking the power of the Proof of Delivery process is just a few steps away. Let’s dive into the step-by-step guide:

  • Configuring POD relevance at item category level

You may or may not want POD to be activated for certain item categories. If you are new to item categories, this tutorial is going you help you master this concept.  To do this, navigate to Logistics Execution -> Shipping  -> Deliveries  -> Proof of Delivery. As shown below.

Configuration behind SAP POD

Configuration behind POD

From the screenshot you can see that Standard Items (TAN) is marked relevant for POD where as Free Goods (TANN) is not. TAN waits for customer to do POD and system does not initiate POD during the POD Window configured in customer master (explained below).

Here is a great place to know what are Item Categories and how SAP does the related determination. 

  • Activated Proof of Delivery at the Ship to party level

As we were discussing earlier, the Proof of Delivery (POD) indicator needs to be activated at Ship to party level. Below screenshot, tells you how to go about doing it.

For example, look at the below customer master record. I wish to configure the rule within SAP that it should always check whether POD has been carried out before the invoices are raised to the customer.

Enabling POD in customer master sales view

Enabling POD in customer master sales view

You must note that this flag is at the Sales Area level and not in General view.

This is because, let us say that the customer Samuels and Company, wants POD to be enabled only for Electronics goods and not for Service. The latter two would be set up as two different divisions in your SAP.

Samuels and Co, specifically want to enable POD for their New York Shipping location which corresponds to partner code 1010. You can see that in the Shipping view of the partner, you have a flag to enable relevant for POD flag.

You also have a POD timeframe. What is means is that if the POD is not done within 2 days, SAP would auto complete the POD without any quantity difference (explained a bit later in this article).

Here is a Quick Refresher on Creation and Maintenance of Customer Master in SAP.

  • Review the Reasons for Quantity difference

Sometimes the customer may report that the quantity delivered is less than what they were expecting and at times more. These differences need to be accounted for.

In the SPRO node shown below, you can configure the reasons for such quantity differences.

Defining reasons for quantity differences

Defining reasons for quantity differences

Executing SAP POD process within Outbound delivery document

Great, so now we have done the POD set up. Let us see how the system behaves when we try to go an order to cash cycle for such a customer and item category.

Since order creation, delivery and PGI process remains unaltered, let’s skip that. However, when you try to do the invoice system will prompt you to do POD before invoicing.

POD error at Invoicing

POD error at Invoicing

To be able to do POD, you can use the below alternative.

  • VLPOD – Use this transaction code, if you have difference in quantity. After entering the delivery number, you will be able to enter the quantity reported and in case of deviation, you can enter the reason. See the below example where there was a difference between delivery and POD quantities.
  • VLPODQ – If you do not have any differences in the quantity, you can use this transaction code to accelerate the SAP POD process. See below an example where there were no differences.
VLPOD in SAP for POD Execution

VLPOD in SAP for POD Execution

Important Proof Of Delivery Transaction Codes (TCodes)

This section helps you to troubleshoot problems as well as a shortcut to access information when you gain more exposure to the topic. Here are the list transaction codes associated with SAP item category determination.

SnoTransaction CodeMeaning
1VLPODLWorklist of pending POD Deliveries
2VLPODTransaction to do POD for a delivery where there could be difference is quantities
3VLPODQTransaction to do POD in a single step for delivery where there are no difference

Frequently Asked Questions

These are some of the frequently asked questions regarding POD process in SAP.

Well, it’s the date when the Proof of Delivery (POD) was completed. This is the moment when the Ship to party confirms that everything is wrapped up at their end.

Needless to say, the company is always eager to get the POD done as swiftly as possible.

It’s a nifty transaction that allows you to handle POD right within the SAP system, specifically for a designated delivery number. With VLPOD, you can document the actual quantities delivered to the Ship to party and even note down any discrepancies between the delivery and POD quantities, if there are any.

Well, POD stands for Proof of Delivery. It’s a crucial step before invoicing the customer, as you can’t just rely on the Post Goods Issue (PGI). Instead, you need that extra confirmation from the customer, acknowledging that they’ve indeed received the goods.

It’s simply the customer’s confirmation that they have received the goods. It’s the green light you’re looking for!

For storing the Outbound Delivery header, we have the LIKP table. As for the line items, they are stored within the LIPS table. If you’re curious about the POD status, you can find the POD Flag field in the LIPS table, coded as KZPOD.

There you have it, a little more engaging insight into the world of POD and SAP!

Troubleshooting SAP POD process

Following are some errors you might come across when you work with Proof of Delivery process within SAP.  Let us see what they mean.

What is it showing pod report back not yet carried out or incomplete?

If you get this error, it means that the ship to party and item category is relevant for POD. Also, it means that the Outbound delivery that you are working with is within the window where SAP is waiting for the POD confirmation. You cannot invoice these deliveries till the POD is confirmed.

Delivery item 000010 of delivery is not relevant for POD?

If you get this error, it means that you are trying to force system to do a POD for an item category which is not relevant for POD. Check the table V_TVLP_POD so see the configuration.

Summary and Further learning

Hope you were able to benefit from the information provided above regarding the Proof of Delivery (POD) process. A thorough understanding of the configuration and execution processes is crucial to a successful POD process. Furthermore, familiarizing oneself with related SAP transactions and tables will help ensure accuracy and smooth operation when creating and processing documents.

Finally, an in-depth look at troubleshooting options can enable quick investigation and resolution of issues. Regardless of the application, having a firm grasp on these topics will be advantageous for any business utilizing this feature.

Hands on activity

Are you ready to become a true master of this topic? Start your journey by doing the following steps.

  1. Create a custom item category, ZCUS, and make it POD relevant.
  2. Set up Item Category determination for the sales document line item.
  3. Choose a customer Ship to and make it relevant for POD in a specific Sales Area.
  4. Execute the POD process for the customer with and without Quantity Difference.

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Shilpa is an accomplished leader with 17 years of experience in various facets of IT strategy, program management, continuous improvement, business transformation, and service delivery. Her experience span over industry verticals like Manufacturing, HealthCare, CPG and Media companies. She is fond of organizing events and is also associated with Habitat for Humanity.

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