S/4HANA Transition – the First Steps!


The clock is ticking for SAP-based organizations to transition to S/4HANA. Yet, we haven’t seen a stampede towards S/4HANA. 

According to numerous surveys, up to 50% of SAP customers are still considering migration plans and timelines. This is no surprise. The shift to S/4HANA is a significant project which can have a massive impact on budgets, resources, and business continuity.

Whatever your timeline to migrate to S/4HANA, there is a decision familiar to all businesses, irrespective of size or industry, and that is: ‘How will I transition to SAP’s new platform’.

There are three main transition options – Greenfield, Brownfield, and Bluefield. Based on feedback from Rev-Trac customers, most medium to large enterprises are opting for Brownfield or Bluefield.

If you are considering adopting a Brownfield or Bluefield approach, the transition process includes the following steps:

  • Scope the transition effort
  • Remove code that won’t be transitioned
  • Check transitioning code for compatibility
  • Fix incompatible custom code
  • Tune compatible code performance

Start with the code

SAP recommends at least 12 months tracking of custom code and SAP standard code using either SCMON/SUSG or UPL. So, even if you or your SAP IT team are not sure of your transition plan, you can do something right now to prepare for the journey. 

Regardless of the approach to your S/4HANA migration, you are going to need to cull your code at some point. Knowing what to keep and what to discard is critical.

Next steps on the path

Deciding what code needs to be transitioned and what doesn’t is only the beginning. With the decision made, it’s time to head down the removal and compatibility path.

At TechEd 2019, SAP said its tools to assist with the removal of code and testing of compatibility had improved. So, if your organization is lagging a little in your S/4HANA transition, it might be for the best in the long-run.

For example, Android Development Tools (ADT) for Eclipse now includes semi-automated fixes for code compatibility. SAP’s goal is for this to be suitable for up to 80% of incompatible code, which will save significant time and costs.

Additionally, many systems integrators (SI) have developed their own tools. As a result, the process becomes simpler as time goes on.

Managing the change

While this transition process seems simple enough, there is an enormous amount of code that is managed simultaneously. Some code will need to be iterated at the compatibility fixing stage, and more during the tuning phase. Keeping track and managing the sequences can be a challenge for SAP IT teams. 

Also, in the shift to S/4HANA, managing functionalities as single units of code will become increasingly complex. To simplify the process, it is better to manage the code groups by WRICEF (Workflow, Report, Interface, Conversion, Enhancement, and Forms) or functionality. Managing the transition at the requirement level – where all dependent objects linked are tested before deployment – accelerates the S/4HANA journey.

Automating your SAP change management process is crucial both to better manage the significant volumes of code and streamline your migration. Several Rev-Trac customers have simplified the WRICEF process using Rev-Trac Platinum – an SAP change management automation platform.

Energy giant AGL, for example, used Rev-Trac Platinum to simplify and accelerate the shift to S/4HANA in one part of the business The utility quantified all the custom requirements for the applications to be adopted and the created a Rev-Trac request for each one. With each request transparent, AGL can easily track the history and reason for every object modification in the creation of the new system.Whatever method your organization adopts to transition to S/4HANA, automating your SAP change management processes is critical for a successful and rapid S/4HANA migration. Using an automated change management platform like Rev-Trac can keep legacy and S/4HANA systems in sync and accelerate SAP change without sacrificing quality or risking the production system.

Find out more

Download this comprehensive whitepaper – Managing an S/4HANA migration with Rev-Trac – to discover:

  • Why automating your SAP change management processes is crucial
  • How Rev-Trac Platinum can help you to successfully manage dual SAP environments
  • What key Rev-Trac Platinum features help to minimize unscheduled downtime
Run without interruption during your S/4HANA migration

This article is sponsored by RSC

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