Best Practice for Site Numbers

A best practice in SAP Retail is that the following objects all have the same 4-character number:

  • Site Number
  • Site Business Partner Number
  • Site Customer Number
  • Site Vendor Number
  • Site Profit Center Number (for Article Master)

This is true for all Sites: Stores, Distribution Centers, and Reference Sites of all flavors.

But this isn’t a system-constraint! Like many things that are described as a “Best Practice,” you can choose otherwise … and pay the price 🙂

It’s true that Site Number (Plant Number – T001W-WERKS) is technically defined as 4 characters and can’t be more than 4 characters. But there’s no technical constraint that forces the same number to be used across components of the Site Master.

Site Master is one business object, comprised of many technical objects.

Let’s leave aside Site Profit Center Number for now (that one is a complete article. See Profit Center number decisions that add complexity.)

And let’s leave aside leading zeros for now (another deplorable notion).

The reason for a very strong preference to make all of these numbers the same — yeah, that’s a Best Practice — is that all of these numbers represent one business object — a Site Master — in different business operations.

If the numbers for the components of the Site Master aren’t the same as the Site number, then your business users have to remember different numbers — other than the Site Number — and use the correct number in different business operations.

For example, Assortment and Listing is based on the Site Customer. When a user is making an entry in those business processes, the user is thinking Site Number, but is technically entering the number of the Site Customer.

Do you really want to train users to remember different numbers for execution of different business processes … when the business user is thinking “Site?”