Being efficient in their processes to respond with agility to market demands is a common goal of all companies around the world, and a large part of them rely on SAP management solutions to achieve it. The latest version of this system is SAP S/4HANA which, since its introduction in 2015, brought innovation, simplicity and performance to many essential processes that are a daily part of corporate operations, and cloud undoubtedly accentuates those benefits.
However, this will only be true if the ERP implementation or cloud migration projects are successfully completed, and that is not always easy.
In technology initiatives as critical as these, it is complicated to coordinate and align the work of internal teams and external partners, so it is necessary to understand and control the entire project to be able to extract the maximum value from the pursued transformation.
Do we know what SAP S/4HANA can offer us?
To achieve the benefits of S/4HANA, it is first worth knowing what it is and what it can offer to an organization.
In 2015, SAP rebuilt SAP ERP Central Component (ECC), also known as SAP ERP, to create this new platform redesigned from the ground up to take full advantage of the performance and real-time analytics capabilities of SAP HANA, its in-memory database technology introduced five years earlier.
SAP S/4HANA is a platform designed to solve complex problems and handle larger amounts of data than SAP ECC, and also offers a better user experience with SAP Fiori, the SAP GUI replacement for the German company's long-time users of the software.
Implementing SAP S/4HANA means moving from transactional systems that record data to getting that information in real time from internal and external sources, and that helps optimize management and respond better to market conditions as decision-making occurs faster. This is a major change in approach that requires a change in processes and ways of doing things if the benefits inherent in the solution are to be realized.
The benefits of the platform
Basically the benefits of SAP S/4HANA are five, and most of them have their basis in the first one: the performance gain, which comes from moving data in memory instead of on disk, which is one of the main features of SAP HANA.
From there, there is also a gain in simplicity and usability. The modular architecture of S/4HANA enables simpler business processes to be implemented, which improves the efficiency of transactions. This is supported by a new, simpler data model and a more intuitive SAP Fiori user interface.
On the other hand, analytics is embedded or integrated at a deeper level, as business transactions and analytics capabilities can coexist on a single platform, allowing for a better view of what is happening, making decisions and completing business processes in the application.
In addition, SAP HANA's intelligent data integration and data quality allows organizations to create their data provisioning layer natively and directly within HANA. Therefore, it can simplify the IT landscape by eliminating a whole set of the non-native heterogeneous tools.
And finally, S/4HANA leverages key technologies that help drive digital transformation processes and consolidate infrastructures such as virtualization or cloud computing, which is at the heart of digital strategies.
On other occasions, as references in carrying out SAP projects on the AWS platform, we have reviewed the different options for migrating workloads to the cloud, which include rehosting (or lift and shift), replatforming and optimization, outsourcing applications that are managed by a cloud provider in SaaS mode, refactoring or creation of a new architecture and, finally, the possibility of opting for a hybrid model, in which the client takes part of its applications to the cloud, while others are managed in its own facilities.
The latest development: RISE with SAP
When last January SAP introduced RISE with SAP it opened for its customers a flexible way to address their digital transformation as a service, regardless of their starting point or complexity.
In some of our posts we have already analyzed this new proposal and, as an AWS partner, we have also delved into the different routes to bring SAP workloads to AWS in an automated and simple way, which is one of the options offered by RISE with SAP.
At Linke we design the right roadmap for each customer to successfully migrate to the cloud. If you want us to help you in your digital process, contact our experts.