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SAP upgrade set; Procurement to be temporarily affected

MIT will be upgrading to a new release of the Institute's SAP software over the final weekend of this month. The timing for the upgrade was approved at the December 20 meeting of the Administrative Systems and Policies Coordinating Council, and SAP users have been notified.

There are three remaining "delta" demonstrations to show users the differences between the new and current versions of SAP. These demonstrations are designed for people who do their work in the SAP GUI (graphical user interface). People who use SAPweb will not see any differences.

The one-hour, platform-specific demonstrations will each be given at 10am in Rm 1-190 on January 17 and 23 (Mac platform) and January 25 (PC platform).

It's important for the community to know that to complete the SAP upgrade, the entire production system (including SAPweb and ECAT, the electronic catalog) will be unavailable beginning at 10pm on Thursday evening, Jan. 25 through mid-morning on Monday, Jan. 29. This means that departments, labs and centers need to plan ahead to procure any supplies necessary for January 26-29.

Other important information about the upgrade period:

During the shutdown and upgrade, Procurement will be unable to create purchase orders from either paper or electronic requisitions. However, partner companies Office Depot, VWR and BOC Gases as well as MIT's internal providers will accept paper requisitions while the SAP system is unavailable.
The VWR stockrooms on campus will be open as usual on January 26.
Customers can order supplies using the VIP Credit Card during the upgrade. Standing blanket orders are another viable purchasing option.
Walk-through checks cannot be processed by Accounts Payable or the Travel Office during the upgrade period.
The Cashier's Office will be open on January 26, but only for necessary processing of cash and services, and temporary receipts will be issued for cash deposits. Staff who need the SAP deposit slips are asked to return after 3pm on Monday, Jan. 29.
Although the credit card can be used, both the journal voucher and credit card verification processes will not be accessible during the upgrade.
Reporting processes in SAP will be unavailable during the upgrade, but the Data Warehouse will have information that is current through the close of business on January 25.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on January 10, 2001.

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