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4 steps to a clear S/4 HANA migration strategy

If you attended UKISUG Connect this year at the ICC in Birmingham, one thing is for sure.

If you’re not thinking about S/4HANA already, you definitely should be.

By 2025 SAP is planning on having all its customers running S/4HANA, meaning that your old legacy ECC system will be at risk of becoming obsolete (or at least unsupported).

Uncertainty about the journey to SAP S/4HANA leads many customers to fear a lengthy, expensive project that will disrupt operations – a fear that was clearly evident amongst the majority of attendees that we spoke to at this years’ leading SAP conference.

However, with sufficient preparation, change management, and useful tools and resources, organisations can adopt HANA quite easily. You can unlock real benefits through a smoother, lower-risk transition.

Why should I care?

The question is not if you should move, but when.

SAP CIO’s are under increasing pressure to improve time to market and lower TCO of their enterprise application infrastructures.

SAP has set out a compelling case for in memory computing and a newly created replacement for ECC and a great number of enterprise applications which make up SAP Business Suite has been launched.

S/4 HANA promises to unlock the potential of corporate data, simplify the infrastructure that supports today’s Business Suite by revolutionising the way data processing is managed and massively reducing systems complexity. The promise is mouth watering: lower TCO, higher flexibility, solve the unsolvable and enjoy better quality time at work.

There’s going to be a cost for this though. Business justification to transition some or all of an enterprise business application estate to a new platform for most doesn’t bare thinking about.

All that a hard working CIO can do is keep the business running and try to keep up with the demands of the business. To add a major technology upgrade with a set of promises, will be challenging to say the least.

What do I need to do to prepare?

With all ECC customer having to migrate to HANA by 2025, the road to S/4 is definitely long, with many potential complex roadblocks on the horizon.

However at Basis we believe there are 4 fundamental principles that will help this big change be as cost effective and effortless as possible.

You’re toolkit for HANA preparation should consist of:

1. Consolidation of your data

Consolidation helps to reduce your SAP footprint when considering a move to cloud-based systems such as S/4HANA, where costs are directly related to memory requirements.

By reducing your SAP footprint you can lower the cost and risk of a migration to new platforms and worry less about a huge data transfer bills, and without compromising quality and security.

2. Revolutionising your regression testing.

Probably the biggest cost and most risk in transitioning to S/4HANA will be the sheer scale of testing. Revolutionising the way regression testing can be performed and automating the process can massively improve the way you move your data.

By removing the need for writing test scripts you can increase the speed and accuracy of testing, making you transition much faster, more efficient and safer.

3. Archive all unwanted DATA

Put it this way, you wouldn’t want to pay excess luggage fees for moving all your old, unneeded, worn out clothes for your expensive trip to the other side of the world would you?

By archiving and removing unwanted data from your HANA or cloud scope you’ll need less storage and lower data transfer rates, making your future migration much simpler and more affordable without carrying through any unneeded data to your new platform.

4. Support the rest of the business with continuous delivery

Don’t forget that throughout during and after journey you will also need to maintain your Change and Release management process to ensure that you operate business as usual and deploy important releases into your systems.

In order to do this successfully, you will need to implement tools and practices that help support Agile and DevOps principles in order to guarantee an accelerated pace of change and constantly deliver to support the needs of the business.

At Basis we can help support you across all these business tasks with our set of SAP certified tools that are used by Global 2000 organisations to help them tackle the most complex of SAP issues.

If you were at UKISUG and weren’t able to talk to us, or simply want to know what changes you need to make given the ever changing world of SAP, get in touch with us, we’ve got plenty of expertise as well as tried and tested solutions to help you get the most out of your SAP for less. We’re happy to listen to the issues you are facing, whether it’s adopting a HANA strategy or trying to get the most out your SAP change and release management teams.

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