When you build your categories hierarchies for your catalogs you might want to consider do you build your own hierarchy or do you use an a standard hierarchy. Often you have a combination of the two. If you are building a procurement catalog for your employees to purchase goods from you might want to build your own hierarchy that is smaller and easier to educate users on.
But for analysis purposes you might want to assign a standardized code to that hierarchy so that you could to comparisons to external industry data. For example you could use a standard list of commodity codes like UNSPSC. Depending on the industry vertical you might operate in you might have a list of commodity codes that are more specific. You might also want to look at where you can get the industry spend data and see what classification system is being used.
In AX2012 you can create a new category hierarchy in Product information management/Setup/Categories/Category hierarchies. In this example I just called it Commodity but you can name it anything.
When you edit the category hierarchy setup the structure that matches the commodities code standard you will be using. Most likely you will want to use the import functionality if they list of codes you are importing is large. The code field is the value that you want to fill in. In this example I just created a very simple 3 levels, 2 codes.
Now associate the category hierarchy to the type “Commodity code hierarchy” you can do this from the hierarchy or from this menu Product information management/Setup/Categories/Category hierarchy types. This is one category type that you can have many of. So if you have different lists you can create multiple category hierarchies that represent the different taxonomies that you will use.
Now you can assign these to categories where they are used for example procurement categories. If I go into Procurement and sourcing/Setup/Categories/Procurement categories. I can find the node in the hierarchy that I want to associate with a commodity code and click the add button while in edit mode.
Select the code from the list and ok to save it.
This will assign the code to the procurement category in this example.
Now what do you do with this? There are a couple of reports that you can use to do spend analysis in AX. You can add the commodity code to the report, in some reports it prints. Once you have your report if you can get industry data for other companies in your industry you can compare you spending to the industry to benchmark company.