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SAP Migration from SAP ECC to S/4 HANA

The Cloud ERP solution is available in two different versions. The single tenant solution is hosted by SAP for a single tenant (= company), also allowing for company-specific code and system extensions. The SAP S/4HANA Cloud is a classic cloud-based software solution, where multiple different companies share the same SAP instance. The multi-tenant solution allows for less company-specific customisations than the Single Tenant Cloud edition. If a company seeks to implement custom adaptations or extensions to third party software solutions for the multi-tenant edition, they can be achieved through the SAP Cloud Platform.

It is important to remember, however, that every business is different and the most effective system for your company is unlikely to be any of the above ‘out-of-the-box’ solutions. Increasingly forward facing businesses are transitioning to so-called ‘postmodern’ ERP systems (those in which more suitable or tailored system packages from independent providers are integrated with standard ERP elements) in order to achieve the most efficient solution for them. Whilst postmodern ERP arrangements can prove complicated to set up and integration can, if handled poorly, jeopardise data integrity, intelligent integration of solutions better suited to your business’s needs (such as managed EDI) will produce a flexible and future-proof ERP environment.

Steps for an SAP ECC migration to HANA

We have worked with many clients who elected to complete their SAP ECC migration to HANA. From these experiences, we have developed a series of recommended steps to get to Suite on HANA with minimal aggravation and business disruption.

The migration process

  • A system copy that uses tools like Migration Monitor, R3load or SWPM. This approach is desirable for many customers because it doesn’t require any version updates.
  • A database migration by means of SAP’s Software Update Manager (SUM). This combines Unicode conversion (if you need it), with technical migration and system update in an optimized migration process. It goes from an ABAP-based SAP system to SAP HANA.

Given the size of the task facing in-house IT teams, identifying effective methods of speeding up the migration process may prove crucial. With this in mind, perhaps the most worthwhile preparatory step a business can take in advance of transitioning is to archive legacy ERP custom code. Studies have shown that the majority of ABAP code is customer-specific code, a large proportion of which generally remains unused after being created. Migration to SAP S/4HANA offers a good opportunity to give your ERP system a spring clean. By completing this exercise in advance of migration you will benefit from a reduced migration volume and thus reduced financial and time costs. It really is a win-win!

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