In SAP MM, purchase documents can be subjected to a release procedure so that they are sanctioned by the authorized persons before further processing is done for purchasing of goods. For instance, there could be a release procedure at the purchase requisition document level for sanctioning goods with following criteria:
- Purchase requisitions (PR) for plant 2000.
- For purchases worth $5,000 or more
- For purchases for purchase group 0002
The criteria for release procedure work with the adding of all criteria and putting the aggregate criteria against individual purchase document to see if the particular purchase document needs a release (sanction) or it can be processed without a sanction. In the criteria mentioned above, if a PR is of value less than $5000 then it does not need a release regardless if the document meets other criteria or not. Similarly if the PR document is not for plant 2000 then it does not need the release.
There could be many release procedures in the SAP system for sanctioning various kinds of goods purchases based on various kinds of criteria. The above mentioned release could be just one release procedure out of many other release procedures. Due to presence of many release procedures in the SAP system, sometimes one individual release procedure may not work due to presence of other ones.
For instance, we can have a release procedure at the PR document level where purchase worth $8,000 or more need to be sanctioned. When a user creates a PR for a value of $6000, he/she may create it for plant 2000 and purchase group 0002. When he saves this PR. he/she thinks that the release procedure will not initiate for this PR as the value is less than $8000. To his/her surprise the release procedure is invoked. He/she may not be aware of the other release procedure in the system. So he/she may report a problem about release procedure not working.
The truth is that all the logic and functionality of release procedures are kept inside characteristics and classes and are not easily visible to users. Only somebody who is experienced with diagnosing characteristics and classes can find out how the rlease procedures work.