Field Service with Direct Purchase (reported as misc cost)

This document explains how to process a field service work order and report the purchase of an item whilst performing the work. The process starts with order entry through work order reporting and ends at invoicing.

Typical scenarios where this process can be applied are field work orders where the technician purchases an item at a local store and the cost of the purchased item should be reported against the work order and charged to the customer. The item is usually not stocked, for example an item specially requested by the customer to have installed or a standard bolt or bearing that can be purchased at the local hardware store.

The process starts with order entry following the allocation of a technician to the order. The reporting steps include adding the purchased item as a miscellaneous cost to the work order, approving the cost (manager task), reporting used labor run time, filing the service error report and closing off the operation. Work order closure and invoicing are automated at operation closure.

The reporting elements of the process can either be performed in M3 BE or in the Mobile Field Service (MFS) application. This document only covers the M3 BE reporting.


This document does not describe the steps taken if using the Mobile Field Service (MFS) application for work order reporting.


The maintenance customer order and work order are created, reported, closed off, and invoiced.

Before you start

For information about pre-requisite settings, reference these documents and apply the configuration recommendations provided:

  1. A valid maintenance agreement must be created in 'Maint Agrmnt. Open' (COS410).

  2. A valid service definition must exist in 'Service. Open' (MOS300).

  3. Select an order type with 'Next manual function' = '5-Start work order'. See Create Maintenance Customer Order Type.

  4. Check Define Work Order Type.

    1. In 'Work Order Type. Open' (MOS120/E):

      • Set 'WO category' to '70-Service'.
      • Set parameter 096 'Mandatory Service Error Report' to '2-Mandatory always'.
    2. In (MOS120/F), set parameter 100 'Should maintenance object update material plan' to '0-No'.

    3. In (MOS120/I):

      • Set parameter 380 'Mandatory approval of time transactions' to '0-Not mandatory'.
      • Set parameter 390 'Employee mandatory when reporting operation' = '1 (YES)'.
  5. Auto approval of service history should be activated in 'Service. Connect to Facility' (MOS301/E) by setting 'Auto approval' to '1=Yes'. See Define Basic Settings for Services.

  6. Issue method '4-Backflush op 2' or '6-Backf op 2' should be used on material in 'Item. Connect Warehouse' (MMS002/G). See Connect Item to Warehouse.

  7. In 'Person. Open' (CRS530/G), specify the employee 'Warehouse' and 'Location'. See Define Employee Information in Time and Attendance.

  8. Check Settings Employee Allocation.

    In 'Settings – Employee Allocation' (CBS020/E):

    • Set parameter 'Empl allocation' to '1-Manual'.
    • Specify a 'capability type for auto allocation' and 'operational element'.
  9. In 'Settings – Maintenance 1' (CRS788/E), set parameter 49 'Miscellaneous cost defined as item' = 1. See Define Settings for Maintenance 1 (CRS788).

  10. Check Create Miscellaneous Cost Type Defined as an Item.

    1. In 'Item. Open' (MMS001/E), select an 'Item Type' with parameter 'Item Category' set to '13-Non material' in CRS040/E.

    2. In (MMS001/G), set parameter 'Non-material type' to '6-Expense'.

    3. In (COS160/E), set parameter 'Mandatory approval of expenses' = 1.

Follow these steps

  1. Check Quick Entry of Normal Maintenance Customer Order.

    The instruction is based on panel sequence=9 in (COS130/P).

    1. Start 'Main CO. Quick Entry' (COS130)

    2. Populate required information: 'customer', 'agreement', 'product', 'lot number', 'service', 'facility', and 'order type'.

    3. Populate 'MCO address', that is the address where the work will be performed. This is required for work order types with service category 70.

    4. Populate other optional information, for example requested start/finish dates, if required.

    5. Press 'Enter/Next' to create the maintenance customer order. Panel sequence '9' launches 'Work Request. Open' (MOS170).

      On confirmation of the maintenance customer order, these activities automatically happen:

      • A maintenance customer order header and line is created.
      • A work request is created in (MOS170).
      • The created work request is released.
      • A work order is created in 'Work Order. Open' (MOS100).
    6. Optional: In 'Work Request. Open' (MOS170) future unplanned work for the customer unit can be reviewed and added to the maintenance customer order.

  2. Check Scheduling Using Maintenance Scheduling Board.

    The maintenance scheduling board is used for scheduling the work order on a short term basis, normally on a 1-14 day interval.

    1. Start 'Maintenance Scheduling Board. Open' (MOS199).

    2. Filter on the relevant 'department', 'work center', 'planning area', 'service manager' and select the relevant date interval. Press 'Apply'.

    3. Identify the relevant work order and drag-and-drop this to the relevant available technician to assign the work order to this technician.

    The selected technician is allocated to the work order operation element.

  3. Work orders allocated to specific employees can be identified and reviewed in 'Work Schedule. Open Toolbox' (MOS195) with a relevant sorting order and view. See Work Schedules in Maintenance.

  4. Check Expense and Miscellaneous Cost Registration.

    1. In (MOS195), select related option '60 – Expenses' to launch 'MCO Report Expenses' (COS150).

    2. Add the misc cost item by populating the mandatory fields and pressing 'enter'. The misc cost line is added with status '10-Preliminary'. A corresponding line for the misc cost item will be created in (MOS101).

    3. Select related option '8 - Submit for approval'. Because mandatory approval of cost type is activated in (COS160) the status is now '20-Definite' and the cost must be approved before it is transferred to the invoice specification.

    4. Select related option '9-Approve'. The status first becomes 30 and then 90 indicating that the transaction has been transferred to the invoice specification.

  5. Check Service Error Report (mandatory/optional).

    If mandatory service report is activated on the work order type in 'Work Order Type. Open' (MOS120), a preliminary report has been created in 'Service Error Report. Open' (MOS057/B)’ based on the information specified in (COS130) at order entry.

    The service error report must be completed before work order closure.

    1. In 'Work Schedule. Open Toolbox' (MOS195), select RO '86 – Service Error Report' to create/edit the service error report, and launch (MOS057).

    2. Finalize the preliminary service report in (MOS057/E) and set the status to '20-Completed'. If mandatory service error report is not activated a new report can be created with action '1-Create' from (MOS057/B).

    3. Close (MOS057) to return to (MOS195).

  6. Report single timesheet transaction in (MOS077).

    1. The work hours are reported in 'Report Single Timesheet Transaction' (MOS077) using related option '61-Report Single Timesheet Transaction' from 'Work Schedule. Open Toolbox' (MOS195).

    2. In (MOS077/E), specify the employee who performed the work. If an employee is allocated to the work order operation the allocated employee is defaulted to the 'employee no.' field.

    3. The work order number, operation number, and service are defaulted.

    4. Populate the 'used labor run time' and/or 'travel time' and 'start date'.

    5. Optionally populate 'costing type'. A default value is selected based on settings in (PCS100).

    6. Verify that the manual completion flag is ticked in order to close the operation automatically.

    7. If the operation is closed no additional time can be reported on the operation without re-opening the operation.

    8. Press enter to confirm.

    With the suggested set up in the 'Before you start' section, these steps will automatically happen:

    • Material is issued from the allocated employee’s warehouse and location (defined in 'CRS530).
    • The operation is closed (sts 90).
    • The service is approved in 'Equipment. Open Service History' (MOS180).
    • The Work Order is closed (sts 97).
    • The MCO-line is approved for invoicing (sts 50).
    • The MCO-line is invoiced (sts 70).

    The work order will be updated to status '97- Invoiced' and the maintenance customer order Line updated to status '70-Invoiced'.

  7. The MCO invoice is printed according to the settings defined in 'Output Service Selection. Open' (MNS204) and 'Output Media Selection. Open' (MNS205). The invoice can be reviewed in 'Maint Invoice. Display' (COS350). See Print MCO Invoice.

Related topics