IS-U/CCS is a business process-oriented customer information system that handles
all categories of supply and services provided by utility and service companies. You can use IS-U/CCS to manage and bill residential, nonresidential, and service customers and to manage prospective customers. IS-U/CCS is exceptionally flexible. It supports a varied range of divisions and
business partners and provides a large number of functions. Furthermore, IS-U/ CCS processes all business transactions and activities with a central business partner jointly, and it offers account management, which integrates all of a business partner’s payment transactions.
In addition, you can take advantage of powerful customizing functions and the flexibility of the R/3 System to customize IS-U/CCS to meet your individual organizational requirements.
Utility companies can use IS-U/CCS to bill all the traditional divisions:-
– District heating
– Water and waste water
IS-U/CCS also handles billing for waste disposal (as of Release 1.2) and cable television connections.
Because IS-U/CCS is integrated with the Service Management (PM-SMA) and Sales and Distribution (SD) application components of the R/3 System, you can also bill service orders and service contracts for services of all types, plus the sale of goods, such as meters, heat pumps, and consumption devices.
IS-U/CCS jointly invoices (if desired and appropriate in terms of time) all the services that a utility company provides to customers. It combines them into a single bill and processes them for accounts receivable via Contract Accounts Receivable and Payable.
Moreover, using an interface you can include the billing results from external billing systems in invoicing. This allows you to collectively create bills and process accounts receivable with the billing results of IS-U/CCS (Release 2). Of particular significance in IS-U/CCS is the collective billing of services from more than one company. This includes convergent billing and intercompany billing. With convergent billing, a utility company can manage the services of a third party and include them in its own bill.
– Waste disposal in behalf of the city sanitation department,
– Cable charges for telecommunications companies
– Drainage charges on behalf of the municipality.
With intercompany billing, several independent companies (each with their own separate balance sheets) can combine their services into a single bill. The services are based on contracts with different company codes. Integrating services from more than one company provides advantages to both
consumers and utility companies. Integration is also the foundation for future forms of billing in a deregulated utility industry where the services of any one division consist of service components from more than one company.
Functions and Special Features:-
Most important functions and features of IS-U/CCS.
Basic Functions and ToolsWith the basic functions of IS-U/CCS, you can manage the addresses and regional structures and generate scheduled dates for meter readings, budget billings, and regular billings.
The print workbench gives you the capability for flexible layout of bills and other customer letters using SAPscript, the word processing system of the standard R/3 System. You can either edit the data in SAPscript and pass it to the printer, or you can make the data available for mass printing at the raw data interface (RDI).
As part of the migration process, you can transfer data from your current system
Other functions allow you to:
– Configure screens with tab strips
– Enter nonstandardized additional information as notes
– Store time-dependent data as information in a history
– Maintain number ranges to assign unique sort features
– Set up flexible access protection
– Log changes
The master data in IS-U/CCS includes:
– Business partners
– Contracts and contract accounts
– Connection objects (such as buildings or land) and the premises, utility installations,
and device locations they contain
Some of the Sub-Modules in SAP ISU: –
For managing utility company devices, meters, and equipment, IS-U/CCS offers the following functions:
– The capability to divide devices into device categories
– Meter and device procurement, warehousing, and stock movements using integration with the Materials Management (MM) component
– Maintain installation structures with their existing relationships between meters, devices, registers, and rate data
– Maintain rate reference values and other information about the purchase of power
– Installation, removal, and replacement of meters and devices
– Device inspection and certification based on a sampling procedure or individual certification
In addition, device management allows you to create meter-reading orders and enter consumption and demand. In this area, IS-U/CCS offers the following functions:
– Create meter reading orders and documents in printed or machine-readable form
– Enter meter reading results manually or automatically
– Conveniently connect external entry systems
– Validate meter reading results
– Correct or post-process meter reading results
– Monitor meter readings
– Valuate at flat rates consumption and demand on the basis of various replacement values (such as the number of cable television connections or the energy intake of streetlights)
Billing is the core of IS-U/CCS. It covers the billing of supply categories and services. In addition, you can incorporate the services that you processed and billed with the Service Management and Sales and Distribution components and the meter reading results from external billing systems in IS-U/CCS invoicing (Release 1.2 and Release 2).
A contract is billed as follows:
1. The necessary data is collected.
2. The data is prorated. The system accounts for price and tax changes during the billing period.
3. The system converts the readings into billable quantities (such as register factors or thermal gas billing).
4. The quantities are valued using rates in which the utility company has stored its billing rules.
5. The meter reading results are validated and form the basis for invoicing.
Forms of billing in IS-U/CCS:
– Periodic billing
– Floating backbilling
– Period-end billing
– Interim billing
– Final billing
– Budget billing and average monthly billing or equalized billing (North America)
The most important functions of contract billing:-
– IS-U/CCS supports as billing cycles both annual consumption billing and monthly billing cycles for less than a year.
– The system bills nonresidential and residential customers in the same data structures with the same functions. The two types of customer are differentiated only by the data.
– You can reverse all forms of bills. You can initiate credit memos and backbillings.
– In addition to automated billing, you can use manual billing (Release 2).
– IS-U/CCS supports many division-specific types of billing.
Some examples are:
o Thermal gas billing procedures
o Billing of public lighting using electricity or gas
o Waste disposal (Release 1.2)
o Company and plant consumption of the utility
o Billing for employees (Release 2)
– Generates accounting documents for receivables and credit memos from billing documents
– Offsets accounting documents against down payments made, particularly paid budget billings
– Formats data for bill printout
– Creates new budget billing plans
– Supports the calculation of taxes
With bill printout you can flexibly design and display your bills according to your needs. You can print bills using the IS-U/CCS print workbench or make them available to external print systems for mass printing. In addition, you can insert individual notification texts or flyers with printed documents.
Contract Accounts Receivable and Payable:-
Because of their large numbers of customers and generally monthly billing or budget billing request, utility companies create large volumes of requests for payment. So that you do not have to maintain this mass data under General Ledger Accounting, IS-U/CCS offers an integrated subledger called contract accounts receivable and payable.
Contract accounts receivable is especially designed to meet the needs of mass processing. At specific intervals, the system transfers the accumulated individual postings to the general ledger of the Financial Accounting (FI) component or to the general ledger of a third-party system. You can also transfer sales or service invoices from the Sales and Distribution component to contract accounts
receivable and payable (Release 1.2).
The objective of contract accounts receivable and payable is to automate all transactions as far possible. You only need to manually intervene when a transaction requires a decision.
The most important characteristics of contract accounts receivable and payable:-
– You can individually customize account and open-item displays.
– In response to certain business transactions, the system automatically creates printed documents (such as checks, account statements, and returns correspondence) and correspondence with user-defined text.
– Using a neutral interface, the system can transfer and automatically perform postings that result from automated incoming payments (from front-end systems, financial institutions, or agencies), from collection procedures, credit refunds, or returns processing.
– The system can process and include in invoicing down payments for energy consumption (budget billings) and for services to be performed in the future.
– You can impose payments in advance or security deposits on customers with a negative payment history or a bad credit rating.
– Flexible dunning is based on dunning levels that you can define for each receivables item. Every utility company can define the individual steps of the dunning proceedings itself. The system maintains all information relevant to dunning in a history that is the basis for a credit rating.
– You can calculate interest on debit and credit items at the line-item level. You can determine rates of interest individually depending on the business partner or transaction concerned (so far as legal requirements, for example, exist).
– You can defer receivables items or transfer them to installment plans.
– You can send documents relating to different accounts or business partners jointly to a collective bill recipient, for example, a housing construction company).
– You can identify receivables as good, doubtful, and irrecoverable and then process them accordingly.
– You can manage and process unallocatable incoming payments.
– Receivables items are included in financial accounting.
SAP Business Workflow:-
The SAP Business Workflow component of the standard R/3 System allows you to coordinate business-process flows across applications. Underlying the workflows is a model of the various business processes that you define. A workflow consists of individual steps performed by a single person, possibly time-delayed, or by a number of different people. The system can execute certain
steps automatically, such as initiating a confirmation letter after a rate change or logging changes (such as change in the contract, bank data, or budget billings) that result from a customer contact. The SAP Business Workflow component provides technologies and tools for automatic control and processing of workflows. It allows you to adapt IS-U/CCS and the standard R/3 System to meet the needs of your utility company.
It makes sense to map a business process as a workflow if it:
– Keeps occurring in the same or in a similar form
– Consists of a number of possibly cross-application processing steps that have to be executed as a structured whole
– Consists of a number of processing steps involving more than one person or departments or that are time delayed
IS-U/CCS contains predefined reference workflows for some of the more important business processes. These include processes for disconnecting and reconnecting a utility installation and installing a service connection. These workflows are discussed in the chapter titled Business Processes. The organizational plan of the utility company determines which staff members are involved in a workflow. You can define this organizational plan using the Organizational Management component of the standard R/3 System. The system assigns tasks automatically to the appropriate staff members. The system processes the assignment of work via the integrated inbox, which supports staff members as they work. The workflow also ensures that required actions, such as the notification, are not overlooked. A log allows you to trace exactly the steps executed for each process. In addition, you can trace the status of any workflow. If deadlines are missed, the system can automatically notify a supervisor. A flexible information system allows you to analyze the runtimes of individual steps and processes. With this data you can identify weak points in the application flow
and optimize the relevant processes.
Every year, larger utility companies deal with several hundred thousand direct customer contacts. In light of this large number, efficient processing of contacts is an important performance characteristic of IS-U/CCS. In particular, entering business transactions places considerable demands on the user interface, service flow, and response time of the system.
The front office is the most important part of customer service. This is where customers can obtain information on all the important data and start all the processes that are important to their work centers. Depending on the content of the business processes, it uses R/3 workflow management to support the flow of those processes.
You can configure the front office to your requirements in Customizing. These configurations allow you to set up a work environment specifically suited to a particular staff member and to define which data and transactions that the staff member is allowed to access.
In its customer information IS-U/CCS offers various ready-made views with which staff can provide customers with information on, for example, their data and accounts. Workflow management contains predefined transactions with which staff can handle such jobs as:
– Creating a new premise
– Processing a move-in
– Changing a contract
– Entering a fault report.
The initial step in any customer contact in the front office is the identification of the customer, which is supported by a powerful search function, the Data Finder. You define in Customizing which data the system uses as search criteria. You can automate this step by integrating a computer telephone integration (CTI) system and display an initial information screen that contains information on the customer. Once the customer has been identified, your staff can call up information screens and then branch from there to additional, detailed views. If changes are required, you can make them on the spot.
For example, you can change bank details or process a move-in.
If you cannot complete the transaction because required data is unavailable or if detailed processing is required, you can:
– Initiate a workflow : Depending on the definition of the workflow, you continue the transaction in
the back office when the necessary events have occurred
– Create a follow-up for the appropriate person : In this case, you can enter customer information in a note and attach it to the follow-up.
IS-U/CCS automatically logs the customer contact. You can enter notes (like marketing- relevant remarks) on a customer contact. You can quickly obtain an overview of prior contacts and sort them according to various criteria, such as prior dunning events or field service operations. The log record for the customer contact references the relevan
t object or documents. This means that you can display
the dunning letter sent for a dunning event, for example, directly from the log.
The efficient performance of services is increasingly important for utility companies in times of growing competition and increased customer orientation. Utility companies consequently plan and cost such services as work orders.
– Setting up service connections
– Maintaining technical equipment, performing periodic device replacement
– Processing repairs and reports of damage
– Creating collection and disconnection orders
– Performing energy consulting
In IS-U/CCS, Work Management processes those work orders. Work Management uses functions from the standard Plant Maintenance and Service Management component and integrates them with industry-specific functions from IS-U/CCS to form cross-component business processes. In many cases you can bill customers for work orders. Where this is the case, the system executes the Inquiry —>>> Quotation —->>> Order transaction before the work order and the Billing —>>> Invoicing transaction after the work order. The system handles these transactions based on the integration of the Plant Maintenance and Service Management and the Sales and Distribution components.
You can combine the billing results for services from Sales and Distribution with the results for energy billing from IS-U/CCS in IS-U/CCS invoicing and show them on one bill (Release 2).
The Information System enables you to analyze the data resources underlying ISU/ CCS.
Like other components of R/3, IS-U/CCS offers a variety of forms of
The statistics are based on a statistical dataset, which the system updates continuously
or monthly from dialog and batch functions. IS-U/CCS distinguishes between three different statistics applications:
o Stock statistics:- Stock statistics reflect the current stock of all the essential objects in the
dataset at a specific point in time.
o Transaction statistics:- Transaction statistics cover the most important processes executed during
a specific period of time. These might include move-in or move-out or disconnection.
o Sales statistics:- Sales statistics provide comprehensive information on quantities sold in
the various divisions and the resulting revenues.
The Logistics Information System (LO-LIS) component of the standard system enables you to evaluate the statistical dataset. The Logistics Information System offers many different options for evaluating, analyzing and presenting data.
– IS-U/CCS Navigator
With the IS-U/CCS Navigator you can get a quick overview of how the data
interrelates within IS-U/CCS. Starting from any given data object, such as a
customer, you can use graphics to navigate through the entire data environment
of the object.