From Release 4.0A you can work with value contracts.
A value contract is a legal agreement with a customer that contains the materials and/or services that the customer may receive within a specified time period, and up to a specified target value. A value contract can be based on a certain material or a group of materials (product hierarchy, product proposal module).
The value contract contains rules that specify the kind of
release orders that are allowed. You can create restrictions with
regard to the customers and materials, as well as a list of partner
In the value contract you can refer to lists of materials that have already been defined. This list could be a product hierarchy or a product proposal module. But you can also create value contracts for only one material (e.g. a configurable material). To meet both these options, two types of contract are offered in the standard system:
The customer fulfills a contract by issuing orders against the
contract. The contract does not contain any exact dates for
deliveries so a release from a value contract has to be made using
a sales order.
When a release is made against the contract, the system automatically updates the released value in the contract. The release order value arises from the total of the open order and delivery values, and the value that has already been billed to the value contract.
The system also updates the released value for later changes (e.g. overdelivery of contract release, price changes in the billing document, partial deliveries, returns, rejection of order items, cancellation or deletion of orders, deliveries, billing documents).
You can make a release in any currency and the system automatically converts this currency into the one agreed upon in the value contract for the price date of the contract release.
You can bill the value contract either directly or per release order. If you wish to bill the value contract directly, you have to create a billing plan for the value contract. This will enable you to bill the value contract for more than one date, and for partial values. If you change the value of an item in the value contract, the system automatically adjusts the open billing deadlines so that the complete value is billed.
You can use the document flow to display all the subsequent documents that arise from a value contract (e.g. sales orders, deliveries, billing documents).
A value contract is completed by setting a reason for rejection. You can determine how the system responds once the target value has been reached in Customizing for value contracts (item category). Responses could include no reaction, a warning or an error message.
A value contract that has not been completely released is not
automatically billed. If you are working with the billing plan, you
already have dates that have been billed and you then reduce the
target value in the value contract, the system does not check
whether too much has been billed. In this case you have to create a
credit memo for the difference between the amounts.
Quantity and value contract items cannot be processed together in one document.
You can find further information about value contracts in Customizing in the IMG under Value contracts. More information is also available in the R/3 library under Sales and distribution -> Sales.