SAP PM Maintenance processes

We distinguish the following processes:

  • Corrective maintenance: activities are performed in response to the development of a deficiency or deficiencies that negatively impact the operations.
  • Breakdown maintenance: the emergency repair of inoperable equipment
  • Preventive maintenance: anticipate and prevent possible equipment failures by making periodic inspections and minor repairs in advance of major operating difficulties.
  • Project-oriented maintenance: tasks that are unique, fixed in time, complex, high-risk, cost- and capacity-intensive, strategic important, quality requirements, needs project-specific organization, …

Corrective maintenance

SAP Plant Maintenance corrective maintenance process

Five steps:

  1. Notification: malfunctions and other requirements are recorded in a notification. Notifications can be accessed and processed via a list. The notification usually refers to a technical object and contains a description of the malfunction or requirements.
  2. Planning: maintenance orders are created and planned on the basis of the reported requirements. The planning encompasses the steps that are to be performed, the material required, as well as any utilities that may be necessary such as measurement devices, cranes, etc.
  3. Scheduling: the order runs through different checks, such as material availability checks and capacity planning, which are important for the release of the order. If no problems arise during these checks, the other is put in process. The shop papers are usually printed at this point.
  4. Execution: the order is executed and the required material is withdrawn. Even material that has not been planned and therefore not reserved by the order, can be withdrawn.
  5. Completion: consists of the partial steps time confirmation, technical confirmation and technical completion. The settlement of an order by Controlling can be performed before or after the technical completion.


A maintenance order consists of:

  • Notification header: used to identify and manage the complete maintenance notification.
  • Notification items: used to determine a problem, damage or activities in greater detail.
  • Activities: document the work performed for a notification. They are particularly important for inspections, because they prove that certain tasks have been performed.
  • Tasks: describe activities that should still be performed. Tasks may have only arisen after the maintenance task was executed (for example, creating a report).

SAP Plant Maintenance notification structure

A maintenance notification does not necessarily result into a maintenance order.

Objects in notification

A notification can be created for a functional location or for an equipment, respectively with or without an assembly, or for a material with a serial number.


Catalogs are mainly used for analysis, workflows and follow-up actions.

  • Catalog: a combination of code groups grouped together by their content, for example: damages, causes of damage, …
  • Code groups: a combination of codes, grouped together according to content, for example: damage to vehicles, mechanical damages, electrical damages, …
  • Codes: description of damage, an activity, … for example: corroded, broken, dirty, leaking, …

Catalog profile: mapping of relevant code groups with objects.

SAP Plant Maintenance catalogs

Selecting maintenance notifications is possible using the SAP List Viewer.


Typical planning tasks include creating operations, reserving spare parts or planning usage times. Two main options for assigning work: • Internal processing  internal workshops • External processing  external companies

A maintenance order consists of:

  • Order header: used to identify and manage the complete maintenance order.
  • Object list: contains the objects to be processed (functional locations, equipment, assemblies, serial numbers) and is implemented if the same activity must be performed at multiple objects of the same type. This is used to compile multiple notifications and also to assign several technical objects to the order.
  • Order operation: describes the tasks that should be performed for the maintenance order and who performs them with what guidelines.
  • Material list (component list): contains spare parts, which are required and used when the maintenance order is executed.
  • Production resources/tools: are required to execute the maintenance order, but are not used up. Examples: tools, protective clothing, trucks.
  • Settlement rule: provides information on who should bear the costs. It is proposed from the master record for the reference object and can be changed when the first settlement rule is maintained for the order.
  • Costs: tells you how much the estimated, planned and actual costs are in the value categories of this order. You can display the costs in to ways:
  • at cost element view (Controlling view), for example, spare parts, external material, labour hours, …
  • at value category level (Maintenance view), for example, internal service, external service, warehouse issue, …

SAP Plant Maintenance order structure

Material planning

You can plan materials, which are requited to execute the task, for each operation in the maintenance order. The materials can be BOM components for the reference object or freely assigned materials.

The materials will be reserved in the warehouse if they are kept in stock. For each order type you decided in Customizing whether the system should make the material reservation effective or generate the purchase requisition immediately or only when the order is released. The two possibilities:

  • An availability check can be called when components are assigned to the order.
  • Material reservation
  • An availability check is performed when the order is released.
  • A material provision list and material withdrawal slips can be printed together with the order papers.
  • Planned goods issues are entered with reference to the reservation (reservation number), unplanned goods issues with reference to the order number. They appear in the document flow of the order.
  • Purchase order requisition.
  • Purchase orders are generated in Purchasing.
  • Order is released.
  • Goods receipts are entered with reference to the purchase order. The order is debited with the purchase order value.
  • When the invoice is received, any invoice differences are automatically credited to, or debited from the order.
  • SAP Plant Maintenance Material planning

    Material planning can also be based on internet catalogs. You can connect to the catalog through the SAP Enterprise Buyer component, previously known as EBP – Enterprise Buyer Professional (R/3 4.6C).


    The following steps can be executed:
    • Select. Via the SAP List Viewer you can select, sort, display, … maintenance orders or operations with certain criteria.
    • Check material availability. The system can check in a single step whether all the materials in the maintenance order are available in sufficient quantities using the availability check function. For non-stock items, the list enables you to see whether the date for the planned goods receipt (from a purchase requisition or purchase order) is sufficient to meet the earliest or latest start date for the operation.
    • Release order. When you release a maintenance order, the system checks the availability of material, production resources/tools and the necessary permits. At the time of release, material reservations become relevant for materials planning, materials can be withdrawn and the purchase requisitions can be generated.
    • Only after releasing you can print shop papers, withdraw material, book goods receipts, enter time confirmations and complete tasks.
    • To enable orders to be released upon creation, the indicator “Release Immediately” must be set. Print.
      1. Job ticket: gives the person executing the maintenance work a complete overview of the order. If your system is connected to a DMS, you can also print graphics, for example, engineering/design drawings on this ticket.
      2. Operation control ticket: shows the maintenance engineer responsible a complete overview of the maintenance order, including permits.
      3. Material pick list: shows the warehouse clerk which materials have been planned.
      4. Object list: shows an overview of the objects (technical objects, notifications)
      5. Confirmation slip: used by workers as an entry sheet for their work times.
      6. Material withdrawal slip: authorizes the person executing the maintenance work to take the materials required for the order from the warehouse. One document per material component.
      Delta printing: option of printing all the papers not yet printed for an order at once. After printing, the status “Printed” appears to the order and creates a print log.


    This phase involves the withdrawal of spare parts from the warehouse and the actual execution of the order. Withdrawals can be planned or unplanned. Materials can also be procured externally. The execution is performed by the maintenance work center named in the order.


    There are two types of confirmations:

    • Time confirmations can be done using the individual entry function or using the overall completion confirmation function. If confirmations are entered, the system sets the status PCNF (partially confirmed) for the operations or CNF (confirmed) if the final confirmation indicator is set. As soon as all the operations for an order are confirmed, the order at header level is assigned the status CNF. The reverse completion is also possible when mistakes were made. You can enter not only times, but also, for example, material withdrawals or counter readings on a single screen. Can be done on three ways: Collective entry by direct entry or using an operation list; Overall completion confirmations: times, activities, measurement values, .. on one screen; Entry using cross-application time sheet (CATS). The activities reported are entered as maintenance notifications with type “Activity Report”. Measurement values and counter readings are entered as measurement documents for the reference object.
    • Technical completion. The maintenance order obtains the status TECO (technically completed) after the required work is completed. After this, most fields can no longer be changed. However, the order can still receive costs, for example, invoice receipts for materials delivered and consumed. This status indicates that the order is finished for Plant Maintenance. Findings (causes, work executed, exact location of damage, symptoms, system availability) can be entered either in the malfunction report or request that forms the basis of the order, or in an activity report entered later for the order. If the order includes several technical objects, each will have its own technical confirmation. If a notification has outstanding tasks (status OSTS), it cannot be completed (status NOCO). The tasks first need to be marked as finished. The related order on the other hand can be completed, as the outstanding tasks must not necessarily belong to the order performed.

    Business completion performed by Controlling takes place after the order has been settled and marks the final completion of the order.

    Breakdown maintenance

    SAP Plant Maintenance Breakdown maintenance process Three steps:

    1. Creation of maintenance order, possibly using data from the maintenance notification. This is not planned, but immediately released for processing. The order usually refers to a technical object. If malfunction data should be stored for later documentation, a notification is used. The notification and order can be entered on the same screen.
    2. Execution: removal of spare parts from stock and the actual execution of the work.
    3. Completion: confirmation of required time, technical confirmations.

    Preventive maintenance

    SAP Plant Maintenance preventive maintenance process Preventive maintenance is divided into three areas: • Time-based, for example, every six months • Performance-related, for example, every 10.000 kms • Condition-based, for example, when warmer than 85°C


    1. The task list defines a series of maintenance activities that are executed repeatedly in a company. They are used to standardize recurrent activities and to plan them more effectively, and to save time when creating maintenance orders and plans. They consist of a header and operations.
    2. The maintenance plan is created for the object and serves to automatically generate orders (also: notifications, service entry sheets)
      1. Single cycle plan (ex. annual inspection of fire extinguishers) Maintenance plan is composed of maintenance items and scheduling dates and is used for automatically generating maintenance call objects (order, notification, service entry sheet). A maintenance plan can have one or more maintenance items. A task is assigned within the maintenance item. The operations are executed at the times calculated by the system when scheduling the maintenance plan.
      2. Strategy plan (ex. check air filter: every 6 months; change air filter, every 12 months) Strategy plan consists of several maintenance packages and represents the scheduling rule for preventive maintenance. The packages for a strategy can have different cycle units (ex. month, year), but they always have the same dimension (ex. time)
      Example relationship task list with maintenance plan, see below.
    3. The scheduling is responsible for the regular call up of orders (notifications, service entry sheets) and recalculating planned dates. It allows you to define start dates. Main actions:
      New start
      Scheduling: calls up the next maintenance order after the last has been completed. Usually automated, triggered by technical completion of order and deadline monitoring program.
      Start in current cycle
      Manual call: manually specify particular date
    4. The maintenance order is automatically generated and is processed like other orders.
    5. The technical completion marks the order and corresponding planned date in the maintenance plan as finished. The date of the technical completion is used in the maintenance plan for calculating the next planned date.

    SAP Plant Maintenance Preventive maintenance plan

    Project-oriented maintenance

    SAP Plant Maintenance Project oriented maintenance Program & Project Management (part of mySAP ERP and MySAP PLM ) can be used here.


    1. Project definition and WBS creation
    2. Maintenance orders are created and assigned to WBS elements.
    3. Execution of orders
    4. Monitoring to schedule, costs, …
    5. Confirmations are settled to the WBS element
    6. Evaluation of central key figures (overall costs, material consumed, …)


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