Consultoría SAP HANA


What is the business value of SAP S/4HANA for customers? What is the repayment period? Who benefits the most?

Natively written for the SAP HANA platform, SAP S/4HANA is a new generation of SAP Business Suite that is characterized by simplification, massive increase in efficiency and attractive features like planning and simulation options in several conventional transactions.

SAP S / 4HANA marks a step beyond the data-only transaction system to provide users with active support for real-time decisions based on data from internal and external sources.

In SAP Business Suite on SAP HANA, customers already have the option to calculate business cases enabled by savings and optimizations of total cost of ownership. These calculations are also valid for SAP S/4HANA. But the simplifications created by SAP S/4HANA bring long other benefits (that the business value calculator will take into account) such as the use of new interfaces, reduced data volume, greater flexibility and greater performance. Finance departments, for example, will benefit from more efficient shared services and accelerated financial closures.

How long does an SAP S / 4HANA implementation take?

It is very difficult to generalize, but there are reliable empirical values to support our views: 75% of customers who migrated from their existing SAP Business Suite to HANA as the first major step to switch to S/4HANA did so in six months. That is a good result for a migration to a new platform.

Some large companies are choosing entirely new projects; they see technological innovations as an opportunity to completely re-build their ERP environments from scratch. There is also the option of expansion projects: in this approach, the customer leaves their IT environment intact, but adopts the new technology to enrich it and improve it. All-new projects and expansion projects take more time, sometimes even several years. And migrating to SAP S/4HANA is only part of this type of project.

Does SAP offer programs that simplify the switch to SAP S/4HANA?

Yes, with great importance in providing comprehensive support for our customers in this regard. Specifically, we offer rapid deployment (SAP Rapid Deployment Solutions) solutions that enable rapid migration to the SAP HANA platform and SAP Simple Finance. SAP or our partners deliver these predefined deployment packages.

Is it possible to migrate company-specific customizations?

In theory, yes. When developing our solutions, we make sure they are “backwards compatible”. In other words, the client can keep their customizations and continue to use them after the migration. However, this does not always apply to the modifications. Think of the analogy of a house and imagine that the customer added a balcony and also modified the building. In this case, the function of the house may be affected, while the “balcony” would have no problems.

What are the requirements to switch to SAP S / 4HANA?

The initial path is to switch to SAP Business Suite on SAP HANA and then implement the packages that contain the simplifications.

What is a “system-driven” implementation?

We want to radically simplify the implementation of SAP S/4HANA so that customers have quick success and amortization. This is especially relevant in the cloud, of course, as customers expect to deploy a preconfigured system. Therefore, SAP provides “guided configuration”. This means that clients no longer define the parameters in tables as they did in ERP systems. Therefore, personalization is no longer a manual task. Instead, all clients have to do in the future is to answer a series of questions and the system will be configured by itself.

How “new” is the data model?

Today, as in the past, a conventional financial document is stored in one or two tables. However, in the past, exhibits and indexes were required to map the different views of the document. In the new architecture, these exhibits and indexes are obsolete.

Our goal was to reduce and simplify the underlying data structures, since a database inside the memory works better than in large tables. Tables that used to be nested are now compressed. The fundamental data structures that determine how a financial, material transaction or inventory management document should look are still the same. So we leave the documents almost the same, which makes it easier for the customer to move from an ERP system to the new technology. A new data structure would not leave the customer choice more than a complete migration. In terms of effort, it is comparable to implementing a new system.

From the customer’s point of view, the path we choose is simple, because it only involves an upgrade to a new system. In short: the “old” data model was basically fine. And we can achieve so much with a data model somehow adapted that we did not see a reason to force the client into the problematic process of migrating to a totally new model of data.

SAP Fiori is mentioned a lot, but SAP Screen People does not appear in the context of SAP S/4HANA. Why?

SAP Screen Personas does not have a dominant role because, in the context of SAP S/4HANA, we consider it traditional technology that allows us to make SAP GUI look like SAP Fiori in terms of design and tactile qualities. Users often do not notice the difference.

Our strategy direction is based on SAP Fiori because this technology allows us not only to change the design, but also to change from a functional or transactional operational model to a completely role-oriented one. Migrating all our transactions to the new technology is a great challenge for us. It also means an effort for the customer to train users in the new technology, although we anticipate that training efforts for SAP Fiori will be low. That is why we are creating a transition phase.

Which SAP S/4HANA applications are available now? Just SAP Simple Finance? What is the difference between cloud and local offerings?

If I implement SAP S/4HANA locally, I am technically implementing SAP Business Suite in SAP HANA and implementing the “exchange innovation” for SAP Simple Finance. But that is just the first step.

SAP will continue to deliver additional exchange innovations that will replace existing SAP Business Suite code with the new SAP S/4HANA code. Currently, the customer receives the code for the new accounting solution.

The situation is different if the customer chooses to implement SAP S/4HANA in the cloud. In this case, the customer gets the whole solution in one flip. We plan to launch a public cloud version by the end of the first quarter of 2015 and a managed cloud version in the second quarter.