SAP Business One alerts are a very powerful way to increase visibility of certain issues in your organization. The alerts system will display the results of a SQL query on a predetermined schedule sent directly to Business One users. If you choose to utilize the alerts system in your company everyone will become very familiar with the "BING BONG" noise that accompanies each alert.
Predefined SAP Business One Alerts
There are a number of useful stock alerts that come pre-installed with SAP Business One to get started right away. The alerts included are designed to watch a few key things that may need managements attention. Your SAP Business One administrator must first enable the alerts. Some included alerts are:
Deviation from Credit Limit/Commitment Limit - This alert is triggered when a sales document varies from the predefined business partner credit/commitment limit.
Deviation from % of Gross Profit/Discount % - This alert allows you to set a custom limit when it will be triggered. Set these alerts up to notify you when a salesperson is going too far to win business.
There a few more pre-installed alerts for inventory management and MRP purposes.
Responding to Alerts
When a alert is triggered the recipient will hear the familiar noise indicating that there is a new alert. It will pop up in the client in one of two ways;
If your company is using the SAP Business One "Cockpit" view there is a handy alert window built into the client interface. This is easily the best way to view and respond to alerts. There is little chance of an alert going unnoticed using the cockpit.
Alternatively, on the main icon row in the SAP Business One client there is an icon to the far right that looks like an envelope. The user will see a red triangle with an exclamation point on the icon when there are unchecked alerts or messages. This button will bring up the "Messages/Alerts Window" in the client.
This window will display your alerts in chronological order. The column on the far left will signify the alert or messages priority. The available priorities are low, normal, and high. An alert with high priority will show a red exclamation mark in this column. The rest of the columns show the alerts subject, date, source, whether it has been read, and if there is any attachments included.
In the "Messages/Alerts Window" you will be able to click on the various alerts and messages to view them. When clicking on one it will display the query right in the below pane. The query comes complete with "golden arrow" links to whatever the alert contains. If you set the alert to display a series of sales orders that need attention then the recipient will be able to click the link to go directly to the sales order in question.
Practical Examples of User Defined Alerts
In our business we have used alerts to our advantage in keeping track of what is happening in the Business One system. Especially after going live with SAP Business One there will be many problems that need to be tracked down. The information needed to solve problems is sometimes hard to come by or hard to keep tabs on.
Using alerts to trigger if certain conditions occur in the system like if a sales order row is missing a tax code are useful because it allows you to know exactly when and by whom something is occurring. You can then go to that person to talk over the specifics of the issue.
We also use the alerts system to display each salespersons outstanding sales quotations every Monday morning. The query we wrote automatically delivers information about quotes that need attention to the salesperson's inbox to make those last minute sales pushes easy to accomplish. You can provide the contact information, quote amounts, dates, etc., all with a golden link to drill down for more details.
Keeping data consistent and complete in the SAP Business One system is always a challenge for every company. If you have a department in charge of maintaining certain data you can send alerts to this department's users for a quick check. They can fix spelling, contact information, complete further details, or even set credit limits and payment terms after they get the alert.
The possibilities are limitless with this excellent way to keep track of multiple key business areas automatically and efficiently!
Alerts = Awesome?
Alerts are 100% worth the effort. If there is regular information your company needs to succeed, chances are you can design an alert to give you the information at your fingertips. To increase visibility of the alerts system I would recommend switching your company to the "Cockpit" view as this makes viewing and responding to alerts much easier.
If you have some ideas for practical and actionable alerts, feel free to email us at email@example.com or leave a comment.