Preparation for conversion to SAP S/4HANA
Even before the actual changeover to SAP S/4HANA takes place, there are a number of things that can be done to prepare for the changeover - including avoiding unpleasant surprises later on.
Even before the actual changeover to SAP S/4HANA takes place, there are anumber of things that can be done to prepare for the changeover - includingavoiding unpleasant surprises later on. The preparations include first andforemost the preparation of a roadmap. This roadmap shows which stepshave to be taken in which time - from the initial situation to the introduction ofSAP S/4HANA.
The conversion to the SAP HANA database can be carried out in advance -as a separate step before the actual conversion to SAP S/4HANA. Thisreduces the complexity of the changeover and enables a "smoothertransition". The ERP system will then already run on SAP HANA. The second stepis the migration to SAP S/4HANA.
Other important preparatory steps include the conversion to Unicode(international standard for character sets, mandatory for SAP S/4HANA),checking customer developments and add-ons for compatibility with theHANA database (HANA Custom Code Check), and the correspondingadaptation and archiving of data if this has not yet been automated.Unnecessary data can be identified and removed at an early stage. With ahigh master data quality, errors during master data checks under SAPS/4HANA can also be avoided.
Another important tool is the SAP S/4HANA Code Check, which can be used,for example, to check customer developments and installed add-ons to seewhether conflicts with the SAP S/4HANA code base may occur. With Usageand Procedure Logging (UPL), companies can also investigate which unusedproprietary developments exist in the system or which database tables arehardly accessed. The same target here: To free the ERP system in the run-upfrom "old burdens" and to set it up as lean as possible. The tidier the system,the smoother the migration to SAP S/4HANA.
The update to EHP 8 (SAP enhancement package 8 for SAP ERP 6.0) must alsotake place prior to the changeover: SAP S/4HANA requires SAP Netweaver 7.5(basic platform for SAP applications) - and therefore EHP 8. EHP 8 is anenhancement package with which SAP provides innovations for ERP systems.With EHP 8, SAP has created the basis for the conversion to SAP S/4HANA.
In addition, companies must upgrade to Solution Manager 7.2. SolutionManager is comprehensive management software that provides tools,services, and content for deploying and operating enterprise applications.Solution Manager 7.2 supports SAP HANA and the SAP Cloud.
Another important part is the conversion to the "central business partner"(Customer Vendor Integration). The business partner must replace the classiccustomer and vendor. Companies can already change over in the ERPsystem. Also new is the "New General Ledger", the new general ledger ("NewGL" as an integral part of accounting). The changeover can also be carriedout in advance.
With the migration to SAP S/4HANA, SAP replaces the old rebate settlementwith "subsequent remuneration". Under SAP S/4HANA, SAP CCS ("ConditionContract Settlement") is the new standard bonus solution. Companies shouldtherefore convert SAP Bonus to SAP CCS at an early stage. However, thename changes: SAP CCS will in future be called "Condition ContractManagement" (CCM). CCM is part of settlement management.
Last but not least, SAP S/4HANA also changes the output management - thesystem for message control in the company. With the help of messagecontrol, the flow of information in companies can be represented in the formof printed or digital documents. This concerns, for example, the informationthat has to be processed in companies from production and quality controlto invoicing. The previous output control is now converted to a new controlbased on BFR+ (Business Rule Framework plus). BRF+ is a system for storingbusiness rules and also regulates message control. Companies shouldtherefore check forms and dependencies in advance of the changeover.
Meinolf Schäfer, Senior Director Sales & Marketing
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