SAP Ariba’s 2022 Q1 Release included 93 new features. These are 10 that our consultants think will be the most useful to most users and also to those all-important SAP Ariba partners, consultants and managed support people.

Top 10 Feature Updates of Ariba’s 2022 Q1 Release

#1Our Upstream Lead’s Favorite Feature Update 

Product: SAP Ariba Strategic Sourcing Suite and Contracts
Feature Name: Ability to force complete tasks in contract workspaces
ID: SC-15243
Integration: Automatically On

What we like about this feature: This is a valuable update for administrators, a role most consultants either inhabit or train users to perform. It introduces a new user group called Customer Task Administrators. This allows the administrator to bypass all work flows in a contract workspace to force complete tasks. This is fantastic for administrators because when we’re doing any kind of testing or there is a roadblock to completion, such as someone goes out of town and does not delegate a user, the admin can go in and force-complete all tasks without having to go into every individual task and complete it. It’s a huge time-saver. This feature is already available in Downstream; however, prior to Ariba’s 2022 Q1 release, in SAP Ariba Contracts you’ve always had to go into every single contract task, complete all the dependencies and conditions and then move to the next one. This feature reduces the manual labor required for testing of new or existing configurations, especially in very complex templates.

#2

Product: SAP Ariba Contracts, Sourcing, Strategic Sourcing Suite
Feature Name: Support for user qualification in contracts
ID: SC-14642
Integration: Customer Configured

What we like about this feature: It allows enhanced data visibility filter for users in the system and adds a layer of flexibility in contract and document permissions. Prior to this release, there were only two ways to specifically restrict access to certain contracts:

1. Template visibility conditions, such as allowing only team members to view contracts.

2. Restrict to a classified system access group. Both of these restrictions needed to be added at the template level.

With this update, there is now a user qualification feature being added that allows restrictions to projects or documents by qualifying based upon a header field value. So if you don’t want every contract created under a certain template to have classified access permission only, you can designate a field value of, for example, a specific dollar threshold. Only those users with that qualification level would be able to see those contracts and/or contract documents.

#3

Product: SAP Ariba SLP, Supplier Information and Performance Management, Strategic Sourcing Suite, Supplier Risk
Feature Name: Support for workflows with internal forms in modular questionnaire projects
ID: SM-30222
Integration: Customer Configured

What we like about this feature: This allows you to add an internal workflow for internal forms in modular questionnaires. Previously, a workaround was required to have some sort of an internal form or questionnaire filled out within SLP and Risk, potentially as a prerequisite for Supplier Registration or Qualification. For example: you’re setting up a supplier and you do the supplier request. They answer the registration questionnaires and for whatever reason you need to add additional information on the basis of certain answers. Prior to Ariba’s 2022 Q1 release, the additional information had to be added manually and there’s never been a way to send that through a workflow. Now a task can be associated through internal forms to create workflows for that information. That enables the internal stakeholders to provide supplementary information, such as specific vendor level information required by SAP for transacting with the supplier.

#4

Product: SAP Ariba Strategic Sourcing Suite
SAP’s Feature Name: Ability to use header fields from the sourcing event instead of the full project for automatically adding Category Attribute Hierarchy content
ID: SSR-3346
Integration: Customer Configured

This allows you to use header fields from the sourcing event instead of the full sourcing project for automatically adding Category Attribute Hierarchy  (CAH) content. Previously when customers create sourcing events within a full project the CAH auto-add capability only considers the full project’s header fields. This is acceptable for some customers as they will add the information on the full project level, but if a customer wants to add different content per event within a full project, this behavior is an issue, and it limits the usage scenarios for the CAH. To make use of this feature, category attribute hierarchy must be enabled in your site and you have to enable the parameter for Application.AQS.RFX.AddContentByEventHeaderFields.Enabled.

#5

Product: SAP Ariba Strategic Sourcing Suite
SAP’s Feature Name: Ability to view historic price for line items from the Item view tab of the Bid Analysis dashboard
ID: OPT-753
Integration: Automatically On

What we like about this feature: It allows the buyer to view historic price information for line items whenever they’re doing a bid analysis in strategic sourcing. When they’re getting a new bid, rather than just seeing that bid there, they’re able to check the box and see what the bid was previously. This is great for organizations that have large procurement groups or may not have specifically assigned supplier or category managers that would be familiar with past events.

#6

Product: SAP Ariba Strategic Sourcing Suite and Sourcing
SAP’s Feature Name: Increase maximum number of custom fields
ID: SS-27931
Integration: Automatically On

What we like about this feature: This is a great upgrade for anyone purchasing an Ariba system, especially for larger organizations. It increased the maximum number of custom fields you can have enabled in your site. Previously the maximum number of custom fields created limitations for for large companies with complex configuration requirements. This would probably be a customer favorite in deployment because we hear so often that a company wants, say, 50+ custom fields and that simply wasn’t possible until this upgrade.

#7 – Our Downstream Lead’s Favorite Feature Update 

Product: SAP Ariba Strategic Sourcing Suite and Contracts; SAP Ariba Contracts
Feature Name: New user interface for enhanced contract line item management
ID: SC-15613
Integration: Customer Configured

What we like about this feature: This is a big lift for a lot of people to save time having to do a bunch of manual steps. There are a lot of changes in this feature, but a few reasons we like this new user interface include: enabling the creating of a new contract and line items from a guided sourcing event, adding line items to an existing contract from an awarded event, and line items from a material master for ERP integrated set ups. There’s also the functionality to edit contract line items in item or in bulk and edit payment terms, among many other great upgrades.

#8

Product: SAP Ariba Buying and Buying and Invoicing
Feature Name: Support for shopping on behalf of another user in the SAP Ariba Procurement mobile app
ID: BMA-2338
Integration: Customer Configured

What we like about this feature:  It hasn’t always been clear how to make sure that buying “on behalf of” was always working. We know because we’ve experienced this issue with several of our long-time clients. Now, when users are buying on behalf of other users or even locations, they can change the business entity values instead of everything just defaulting. In many cases it’s convenient to have those defaults so you don’t have to fill out as many fields, but if you’re trying to buy on behalf of someone else that makes it more complicated. Now this mimics what the normal processing is like in Ariba, so you’re able to easily order on behalf of someone.

#9

Product: SAP Ariba Buying and Buying and Invoicing
Feature Name: Goods receipt-based invoice verification in SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing
ID: SINV-5407
Integration: Customer Configured

What we like about this feature: In ERS, especially for SAP, there are evaluated receipt settlements, so this is a good receipt-based invoice. In SAP you are able to mark your vendor master, your purchase order and even your invoice with ERS. Previously, this would not come through very well for Ariba Buying and Invoicing. This feature makes it more seamless, rather than requiring a work around.

#10

Product: SAP Ariba Buying and Buying and Invoicing
Feature Name: Amazon Business available as a Spot Buy marketplace
ID: SB-8474
Integration: Customer Configured

What we like about this feature: We see this as an end-user favorite feature, especially for smaller companies. It allows users to search for products on Amazon Business from within SAP Ariba Buying, SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing, and Guided Buying, rather than enabling Amazon catalogs.

Confused about which updates your company can benefit from? One of our most popular Ariba Managed Support (AMS) services is proactively monitoring Ariba updates. Visit our AMS page for more details

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