Friday, January 4, 2008

Oracle EBS: Editing the FA Account Generator Process (Oracle Financials)

1. Editing Workflows using Oracle Workflow BuilderInstall "Oracle Workflow Builder" from the Oracle.com website. The version you will need depends on the version of Oracle Applications you are currently using. If you are unsure which version to use you can always raise a Service Request (SR) via Metalink and ask Oracle.

To open the workflow select “File > Open” from the menu:

Figure 1: Oracle Workflow Builder, Open Dialog

User and password are for the Oracle APPS account.

If you want a version of the Workflow other than the current version you can enter a date in the “Effective” entry box and it will give you the version of the workflow that was in effect on that date. Unless you’re doing a rollback to a previous version you can leave this blank.

Clicking “OK” will connect to the database and then display the “Show Item Types” dialog:

Figure 2: Oracle Workflow Builder, Show Item Types

The Workflow to edit is called “FA Account Generator”, in order to edit it you need to highlight it in the right-hand list (Hidden) and move it into the left-hand list (Visible) – as shown in Figure 2. Once you’ve selected it click “OK”.

NOW THIS IS IMPORTANT: If you work on a workflow while connected to the database any change you make is immediately committed to the server. As soon as you have opened a Workflow for editing you should save the Workflow locally and work on the local copy rather than working against a database (you can then open the local file and save it back to the database when you’re done).

The Workflow builder uses an MDI interface, a window will open titled “Navigator”:

Figure 3: Oracle Workflow Builder, Navigator

All the items shown in the figure above (beginning "Generate ...") are the workflows provided by Oracle. You should never edit these, if you do there is a risk (well, a practical certainty) of them being overwritten during an upgrade. If you need to make changes to a standard item (i.e. the process “Generate Book Level Account” in Figure 3) then you must create a copy of that item by right-clicking it, selecting “Copy” and then “Paste”. When prompted to enter the details prefix the name with a short-code, for example your company name or initials (there are length limitations, if you go over the length just remove characters from the end until it fits).

Fixing problems with the “Generate Accounts” process requires that you open (double-click) the “XXXX Generate Book Level Account” process (where XXXX is your chosen prefix). The original version (i.e. the “Generate Book Level Account” process) is below:

Figure 4: Generate Book Level Account Process

As you can see the "out of the box" process is fairly straight forward. The most common changes are usually to create "custom" branches coming off the "Get Book Account Name" process (where it shows "" above the arrow). Looking at the company I currently work for our customised process is:

Figure 5: Customised Generate Book Level Account Process

This shows separate flows for Proceeds of Sale (Loss/ Gain/ Clearing), Cost of Removal (Loss/ Gain/ Clearing) and Net Book Value Retired (Gain/ Loss). If you check the first “Assign to Value …” in each of the three flows you’ll see that these route to hard-coded constants:

Figure 6: Process Flow Hard-Coded Values (009) .

If a new branch needs to be created then you will need to copy most of the values from an existing branch (unfortunately there is no “copy/paste” for processes so you need to create new processes by dragging and dropping from the navigator and then set their properties).

2. Configuring Apps to use the New Workflow
After the work flows have been altered and you have uploaded them into Apps you need to configure Oracle E-Business Suite to stop using the Default workflow and switch to the customised version.

To do this you need to connect to Apps and switch to the “Fixed Assets Manager” responsibility. Expand the Financials > Flexfields > Key option in the tree view and select “Accounts” (see below):

Figure 7: Showing the Account Generation Options

Once you have selected this you are presented with an empty grid:

Figure 8: Account Generator Processes

Click on the “Find” button on the toolbar and search for “General Ledger%” and click “Find”. Select the entry with the correct structure (usually the company name)

Click “OK”.

The main Account Generator Process window will now populate with a list of Item Types and Processes. Scroll down and highlight the “FA Account Generator” Item Type:

Figure 9: Selecting the FA Account Generator

Click on the “…” (in the Process Name field) and you are presented with a list of processes from your workflow. Select the correct process (most likely “XXXX Generate Default Account”) and then click the save button on the toolbar.
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