Characteristics in SAP PM

Explain about the characteristic in SAP Plant and Maintenance.
A characteristic in SAP is a cross module application. It is used in PM, MM, PP, SD, QM etc modules. Here we will discuss application of Characteristics in SAP PM.
Business Application: Characteristics are used to represent the specifications of a technical object.  For ex: Power of a motor, voltage of a transformer etc.
Characteristics in SAP PM are widely used with Class. Once created, it is assigned to class and class is assigned to technical object (Equipment, functional location etc) and all the
characteristics are available for the technical object.
Take one more example for proper understanding: Suppose there is equipment. We have created a Class ‘Motor’. Then we will create and assign characteristics Power, Voltage, Current etc to class. Then assign the class to the technical object (Equipment or functional location) all the characteristics will be available to the technical object.
Now we can maintain the values of these characteristics (Specifications) in CL20N or CL24N.

How to create Characteristics in SAP PM:
Step 1: Run t code CT04 or navigate this path in SAP easy access screen.
SAP Menu -> Logistics -> Plant Maintenance -> Management of Technical Objects -> Environment -> Class -> Master Data -> CT04 – Characteristics
Step 2: Enter the name of characteristic and click on the create option available on the top menu bar or the white sheet on the right hand side of characteristic field.
Step 3: Five new tabs (sub-screens) will appear on the screen.
Step 4: First tab is Basic Data tab. Here we enter the description of characteristic. Char group and status of characteristic. Here we can also enter authorization group. Authorization group is used to allow a particular end user to maintain a characteristic.
For ex: Electrical department does not want mechanical department to display and process their characteristics then we should recommend use of Authorization Group.
Step 5: Afterwards select the Data type in next sub-screen. Available Data types are Character, Numeric, Currency, Date, Time format.
If you select Character then system will ask you to enter the number of characters. You can also make it case sensitive by setting a check box below.
If you select Currency then system will ask you to enter number of chars and currency like USD, INR etc.
If you select numeric format then enter number of chars, decimal places and unit of measurement.
Step 6: There is another sub-screen – value assignment, where you can decide that characteristic will accept a single value or multiple values or range, negative values or it is restrictable. We can also make this characteristic’s entry required.
Step 7: In the next tab you can select the language. Generally we have EN –English as default value.
Step 8: Next tab is values tab. Here you can maintain the values which you want to assign for this characteristics.
For ex: If you are creating voltage as characteristic then possible values can 220 V, 440 V, 3300 V etc.
However, you can set the check box of ‘additional values’ for allowing any other value.
Step 9: Additional Data tab is used in MM Module to configure release strategy. It is not used in PM Module.
Step 10: Last tab is Restriction tab. Here you can select the relevant Class type so that class created by you is used for only that application.
Step 11: Click on SAVE button.
Characteristic is created for SAP PM.
Now assign this characteristic to class in CL02 t code in the in the characteristic tab.
This is frequently asked in SAP PM Interview questions and answers.


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