Tendering with GAEB

From a single level material list to a multilevel item list – GAEB clears the way

In contrast to service procurement in general, the procedures for tendering, awarding and billing (AVA) of construction services are much more complex. In addition, since the 1980s, there are standards for the descriptions of construction services – including guidelines that prescribe the data exchange – specified by the Joint Committee for Electronics in Construction (“Gemeinsamer Ausschuß für Elektronik im Bauwesen”: abbreviation GAEB). This data exchange via GAEB is not possible in SAP. The mapping of procurement and processing of construction services is therefore very difficult without process integration and requires a high degree of manual input.

The lack of functionalities and poor usability indicate that service procurement is not a priority for SAP. Purchasers of construction services who depend on sector-specific formats such as the GAEB standard for the procurement and processing of multi-level service specifications therefore rely on specialized AVA programs (tendering, awarding and billing) in addition to SAP. In terms of a comprehensive controlling strategy via SAP, however, these programs represent isolated IT solutions – thus, a continuous transparency of the overall process is not possible.

SAP’s lack of focus on services has far-reaching consequences. Due to a poor usability, in many cases entire service specifications are aggregated into one single item and mapped in SAP – 1 piece (SU) manufacturing plant setup, 1 million Euro.

Anything that is recorded in the AVA system (e.g. measurements, partial payments, supplements) must be updated by hand in SAP. There is redundant data and no clear data storage. The potential for errors in the manual transfer of accounting values to the SAP system is still high.

Differentiated billing of the services rendered, which serves as the basis for reporting and control mechanisms, can therefore only be done in the external AVA system where the specifications were created. The details required for planning and controlling the budgets stored in SAP are missing. With regard to SAP, services cannot be verified and approved – and therefore commitments cannot be reliably monitored.


Transparency instead of shadow system

The possibility to import a GAEB file into an SAP document (e.g. into a purchase requisition) is insufficient and does not offer a sustainable solution. A prerequisite for real-time controlling is the transfer of ALL items or service lines of a service specification included in a purchase order – and not just the header data as 1 “SU” as an aggregated total to SAP. FUTURA® transfers GAEB-compliant purchase orders at the push of a button: Individual service lines are created in the SAP system for each item of a set of service specifications. Only this allows transparent accounting and automated commitment reduction in the SAP system and lays the foundation for convincing purchase controlling.

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Portraits Hubert Schröder
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