*  SAP Flexible Real Estate

By Joe Oppenheim (B.Tech University of Johannesburg)

What is SAP Flexible Real Estate?

·         SAP is a global reach company based in Germany that builds and implements business software

·         SAP Flexible Real Estate, or REFX for short, is a product within the SAP Business Suite of products

Why SAP Flexible Real Estate?

·         SAP Flexible Real Estate expands on SAP’s existing ERP product offering allowing owners of the system to manage real estate portfolios.

·         It enhances the already very strong SAP ERP Business Suite by giving the existing financial system a real estate focused environment

What do I need to implement SAP Flexible Real Estate?

·         SAP Flexible Real Estate is a part of the SAP Business Suite (also referred to as ECC 6.0 or ERP Central Component version 6.0). If you have SAP ERP, then you already have SAP Flexible Real Estate

Who should use it?

Everybody…you obvious your own premises or you lease in premises from a landlord…so you should be using it.

It allows you to understand how you are using your real estate, maximise the use and reduce costs by collating all of this data in one place.

If you have more than just your own or lease-in property, all the better:
SAP Flexible Real Estate allows you to manage land, buildings, improvements, equipment and space for either your assets, or assets you manage on behalf of others, with SAP maintaining the legal and physical relationships and structures of these companies.

It has been implemented globally and in South Africa for financial asset managers, shopping center owners, property managers and manufacturing & service companies

What does it do?

SAP Flexible Real Estate allows you to represent all of your real estate portfolio’s from one or multiple companies from asset, space, capacity, occupants, lease-agreements, expected and actual revenue and expenses, etc.

You will be able to

·         Represent your land, buildings and other real structures with an incredible amount of detail. e.g.

o   floors,

o   offices,

o   apartments & flats,

o   houses,

o   shops,

o   gardens,

o   parking etc.)

·         Incredible amount of detail may be specified for your whole portfolio and used to report on and search for prospective occupants, details such as

o   financial asset values,

o   building values and dates,

o   sizes, capacities and dimensions,

o   qualities, characteristics and even fixtures and fittings!

o   Insurance values

o   Market values (which can be used to produce leases directly!)

·         Represent your business partners against your real estate portfolio, e.g.

o   landlords,

o   tenants,

o   service providers,

o   contractors,

o   employees,

o   agents, etc.

·         Represent your contracts and legal agreements against the real estate portfolio and business partners including all financials forecasts (e.g. rent, operating costs, utilities, etc.), e.g.

o   lease agreements,

o   service contracts,

o   accounts

·         Produce invoices and payments using these same details which can be printed, emailed and faxed

·         Pay service providers and recover these utility and service charges  from tenants automatically using recovery factors and meter readings, e.g.

o   Security

o   Landscaping

o   Water

o   Electricity

o   Refuse, garbage and rubbish

o   Etc.

·         Adjust rentals and other charges based on sales (turnover rent) and indices

·         Upload all documentation associated with all these levels, such as

o   Draft lease agreements

o   Signed lease agreements

o   Floor plans

o   Images

o   Etc.

·         Produce and email correspondence such as

o   Adjustment and increase letters

o   Requests for sales data

·         Produce final contracts using predefined templates and the data already captured in the system

·         Search and allocated space using mobile devices such as the Apple Ipad

·         Report on all of this data including

o   past historical data

o   plans and budgets

o   forecasts, etc.

How does it work?

·         SAP Flexible Real Estate completes the real estate cycle by managing the real estate-specific processes of real estate assets

·         With SAP Flexible Real Estate and ERP implemented, your asset management cycling includes

o   Planning & Budgeting

o   Acquisition, Construction, Materials Management

o   Fixed Asset Management (depreciation, deferred tax, reclassifications and disposals)

o   Real Estate management

§  Land, Buildings, Space, Floors, Parking, Rooms, Capacities

§  Occupancy, Lease agreements, Contracts, Tenants, Landlords, Service Providers

§  Profit / Loss reporting at these same levels

o   Maintenance

What are the benefits of SAP Real Estate system?

One platform for ERP including financials, HR, purchasing, maintenance, asset management, you name it, and now with real estate.

SAP Flexible Real Estate gives control and complete sight of the revenue and costs associated with your real estate.

An implemented SAP Flexible Real Estate allows you to

·         Control space, capacities and availability for office, retail, industrial, residential parking and other specific revenue generating areas (such as advertising)

·         Control all parties including designers, contracts, architects, municipal services, landscaping, tenants & landlords, signatories, guarantors, etc.

·         Control all contracts, such as landlord lease agreements, tenant lease agreements, service provider agreements, rights and obligations

·         Control all revenues from rent, advertising and parking

·         Control all expenses from utilities (water, electricity, refuse, security, etc.)

·         Control the sources whether external such as customers/vendor or internally from departments, cost centers etc.

·         Control resources such as lease agreement templates, signed leases, training material, policies, procedures directly on the system

Is it secure?

SAP implement business software for oil, gas, manufacturing and defence companies and government globally.

The system is designed for full authentication and authorisation management and impressive change control (nothing changes in the system without the ability to report on it)!

How much do I need to change?

SAP Flexible Real Estate enhances an existing financial environment. You just link the real estate elements (land, buildings, floors, rooms, shops, space, contracts and parties) to your existing balance sheet, general ledgers, accounts and management reporting areas.

The solution is logical enough to continue doing what you do. You just do it in one place, fully integrated and reported live.

But I don’t use SAP…

That’s ok, SAP can be installed on site with various levels of implementation to support SAP Flexible Real Estate. And now would be a good time to consider SAP as a one-stop-shop for all your company controls and information reporting.

Can we do it?

You must do it. My job is to help YOU implement the system. Be it the operational personnel (who will be using it), management personnel (who will be reporting from it) or the IT personnel (who will be supporting it).

The philosophy of such an implementation is to educate your organisation on how to implement the system and support you all the way through until you are comfortable running it on your own.

How long does it take?

Not long at all. A basic setup of SAP Flexible Real Estate for a single South African company can be done in a week!

Depending on your company:

·         Is it for one company or multiple companies?

·         Is your organisation regional, national or international?
SAP Flexible Real Estate caters for almost all countries globally…on one system!

·         Is your company a financial or manufacturing company, product-driven or service-driven company?
SAP Flexible Real Estate ties into your existing environment with little need to change

·         Do you have 10 staff members or 10,000?
SAP Flexible Real Estate caters for both complex processes or small teams with comprehensive oversight

What does it cost?

Running SAP Flexible Real Estate requires a once-off license from SAP which gives a user access to all SAP Flexible Real Estate functionality in a live production system

The duration of the implementation will dictate the cost, and the duration is based on your environment and needs

Your environment

SAP Flexible Real Estate is a globally implemented system, with international regulations and tax laws spanning many counties. Setting up of the system will take into account

·         The number of companies that make up your organisation

·         The number of different type of real estate portfolios within your organisation

·         The number of people your organisation uses to manage your organisation

·         The complexities and uniqueness of your company

·         Your chosen hardware and software platforms (SAP works with all major operating systems and database platforms)

Your needs

Implementing SAP Flexible Real Estate can be done only as a supporting computer system, but consideration of the following needs to be included in your decision making:

·         Analysis of your existing environment and processes

·         Setting up according to your company (invoice and lease agreement formats, balance and income statement reports)

·         Moving data from your legacy systems into the new system

·         Producing training material and training your staff

What about the future?

SAP is continually improving all their products and as a customer of SAP, you will have access to all support and upgrades to your product. The SAP Flexible Real Estate system is currently running on the ERP system version 6.0 with enhancement at a level 8…and continuing.

SAP is also driving the latest trends and technologies. SAP Flexible Real Estate can be accessed via the internet through a web browser on computers, laptops, phones and tablets. The SAP Flexible Real Estate Mobile Broker app of Apple IOS and Android allow access to your portfolio via mobile devices and the SAP Fiori platform allows access to most ERP functions via the same mobile devices.

The system is already enabled for internet-of-things, web, cloud, email, etc.

Is there help and documentation?

Of course, there is comprehensive information on the following websites:

SAP Application help:

·         Open the website https://help.sap.com

·         Click on Enterprise Management

·         Click on SAP ERP

·         Click on Application Help

·         Choose your language

·         Click on SAP ERP Central Component

·         Expand Accounting

·         Click on Flexible Real Estate

Click HERE directly for the SAP Help or contact me directly on joppenheim@opnel.com or
+27 83 397 2453

Community Forums: https://scn.sap.com

How do I start?

I am Joe Oppenheim, an SAP Flexible Real Estate expert and Real Estate SME (Subject Matter Expert).

Contact me to find out how to get started, for support, help and training
+27 83 397 2453