SAP made a series of announcements aimed at accelerating the migration of customers to S/4HANA. With support running out for SAP ECC 6 in 2027, it is looking to nudge organisations towards the cloud a little faster and with more help.
The announcements came in a blog by Eric van Rossum, Chief Marketing and Solutions Officer SAP Cloud ERP. Van Rossum commented, ”I’m excited to share that today SAP is announcing several new offerings to help customers maximize the benefits of cloud technology.”
SAP has unveiled a new release of SAP S/4HANA, added a new option for Rise with SAP and created a conversion and modernization program for RISE with SAP. Combined, they will make it easier, especially for legacy customers, to move to the cloud.
The SAP S/4HANA Cloud, private edition, 2023, is now generally available. The private cloud environment will better enable organisations to migrate their SAP legacy software to a cloud instance with greater compatibility. The new release delivers a scalable architecture, an improved user experience, an open architecture to better connect other applications and more intelligence, leveraging ML and AI.
The new Premium package for RISE with SAP offers increased access to AI technology, sustainability tools, advanced finance tools and a supplier portal to enhance networked ERP.
As SAP looks to help organisations accelerate their move to the cloud, they are often held back by legacy business processes. The new conversion and modernization program for RISE with SAP leverages the Business Process Mining platform SAP Signavio. This will help organisations understand the inefficiencies of the current system and help build the business case for any migration project.
SAP is also offering a new free service, the SAP Customer Evolution kit, which includes 1:1 sessions with SAP experts to evaluate the migration to the SAP S/4HANA cloud. It kit includes a transformation program that can help accelerate the migration path.
The announcements came in a blog by Eric van Rossum, Chief Marketing and Solutions Officer SAP Cloud ERP. Van Rossum commented, ”I’m excited to share that today, SAP is announcing several new offerings to help customers maximize the benefits of cloud technology.”
SAP S/4HANA Cloud, Private Edition 2023
This edition will now follow a two-year release cycle, with feature updates for each release every six months. Each release will now stay in mainstream maintenance for seven rather than five years. This is a major release, and as such, there are a huge number of improvements.
More intelligence: Within Finance, SAP has added a new predictive scenario for the risk of late payment. The intelligence baked into the solution will help identify where there is a risk of late payment. There is a nuanced feature for the Public Sector around this improvement.
Data Insights: The release sees a new feature, procurement overview, which shows the most important information and relevant tasks to action. The graphical dashboard provides a user-friendly means for procurement managers to understand what is happening and what they need to do.
Master Data Management: A new visualisation of master data governance is provided to give users deeper insight.
Better support for Utilities: There is a new CDS cube and query focused on Business Process Exception Management (BPEM), enabling users to analyze and monitor the clarification cases that, for example, have not yet been solved and need to be processed.
Customer Service: It is now possible to suspend the product valuation initiated by a refund in the customer returns process. Suspending the product valuation allows customers to keep the returned product while the valuation process is on hold.
Product compliance: There is support for continuous provisioning of listed substances through a regulatory content service. It uses unique CAS numbers to provide the traceability required for each chemical substance.
Inventory: Several improvements around inventory management with wider support for barcodes within several SAP Fiori applications. Kanban is enabled for decentralized SAP Extended Warehouse Management (EWM), enabling users to drag and drop products from a source storage location to a production supply area.
User experience: Various SAP Fiori apps are added or updated. There are new SAP Fiori apps for:
- Capacity evaluation in manufacturing
- Manage production supply areas
- Making change requests to update freight order charges in transportation management
- Cost distribution in the defence & security industry
- The creation and editing of credit memo requests in sales
Sustainability: A new feature that enables a request for carbon footprint data from suppliers to make carbon-conscious award decisions. There is a new application for managing health and safety incidents.
The Premium Plus Package for RISE with SAP
The new premium plus package will offer clients access to enhanced tools to bring greater benefits to their RISE with SAP program. The improvements include:
- More sustainability insights by embedding carbon and other resources into core business processes, calculating and sharing that data across the value chain, and addressing rapidly evolving environmental, social, and governance (ESG) reporting standards.
- New AI capabilities for ERP with the help of the recently announced AI copilot, Joule. Joule quickly sorts through and contextualizes data from multiple systems to surface smarter insights.
- It is empowering finance leaders to make decisions faster with solutions that streamline planning operations, improve forecast accuracy with financial and non-financial business unit data, and enhance invoice management and cash collection processes.
- Equip customers to create a networked ERP with a supplier portal that simplifies spend compliance by enabling close collaboration with a broad network of suppliers as well as automating procurement and invoice transactions.
SAP customer Mahindra & Mahindra was showcased during the recent Rise into the Future event. It has not only moved to the cloud but also transformed its business processes in doing so.
Rucha Nanavati, Chief Information Officer, Mahindra & Mahindra, “Agility is critical to maintain and increase our leadership position amid a dynamic industry landscape. Moving to the cloud improved time to market and enhanced both the customer and employee experience. RISE with SAP also allows us to have quick access to innovations like AI that will help us innovate faster and stay competitive.”
Enterprise Times: What does this mean
SAP is sensibly adding its latest innovations into the RISE with the SAP initiative. On the one hand, customers might ask why they should be paying for a premium service that also appears the same as what existing cloud customers get. There is a difference. The time to value for the new offers appears shorter, and the business value is higher.
Organisations that still sit on legacy solutions must consider when, rather than if, they want to move to the cloud. While third-party support companies such as Rimini Street and others can support organisations after 2027, will they miss out? The latest innovations around generative AI are proving a game changer in various industries. Without these tools embedded within operational systems, efficiencies are likely to fall behind the competitors, at the risk of decreasing profit margins.