Suite on HANA isn’t just a step on the way to S/4HANA — it’s also an important journey in itself, and one that can provide excellent ROI with the proper planning and follow-through. Our Suite on HANA migration guide can help illuminate your path.
Define the Case for Suite on HANA Migration
Defining your business case is key to getting maximum value, as is tracking ROI and success in your Suite on HANA migration. Suite on HANA may be the first step to on your migration to S/4HANA, but it also has considerable value by itself. Some of the benefits of moving to Suite include:
- Cloud Migration: Your migration is a good opportunity to move to the cloud. That carries with it a series of core benefits, such as cost savings, agility, scalability and greater resiliency. There are also hidden cloud benefits like hyper-innovation, integration and better SAP administration through adopting a vendor platform, which the cloud can help facilitate.
- Better Performance: The performance gains of migrating to Suite on HANA can be game-changing — and not just for companies that struggle with sluggish ERP. Benefits of this performance boost include better customer satisfaction and internal productivity as well as faster closing.
- Better Visibility: With HANA, you’ll be able to analyze the flow of resources through your organization in real time. That enables you to better serve your customers and react more quickly to changes in your market.Improved Analytics: Together, the performance and visibility of Suite on HANA greatly improve your ability to use analytics. Rather than depending on in-depth reports quarterly or semi-annually, you can base strategic decisions on current data.
- Simplified Organizational Structure: Your Suite on HANA migration is an opportunity to simplify your IT support structure in a variety of ways, including closing your on-premise datacenter, moving to a managed services model and unifying a fragmented landscape through landscape transformation.
- Compressed Database Size and Reduced I/O: With HANA, SAP has reengineered the relational database management system. Through design innovations such as merging transactional and analytical processing into a single database the software provides a lower database footprint and reduced I/O, lowering hosting costs.
Assemble Your Team
Your SAP migration will take a combination of in-house talent and partner organizations. Your team needs to have knowledge of:
- Strategic and Tactical Goals and Constraints: Your team will need on-premise and/or support staff who understand a range of business factors that affect your migration path, timetable and goals. These include your budget, concurrent projects, obstacles and issues with your current system performance and functionality.
- Stakeholder Requirements at Multiple Levels: It’s a good idea to bring in workers from different departments and levels of your company. Your executives may not completely understand the IT obstacles that people on the ground floor deal with or the workflow your marketing department uses. Getting a range of voices ensures your SAP HANA migration can benefit your whole company.
- SAP Functional Skills: Your functional team is responsible for gathering your requirements and turning them into a solution. They also help with a range of other tasks, such as testing and educating stakeholders in preparation for go-live.
- SAP Technical Skills: Your technical team is responsible for building your system, tuning and refining it and executing your rollover. Post go-live, technical stakeholders will be responsible for daily operation and maintenance of your landscape. In many cases, it makes sense to retain the same technical partner to operate your system post go-live.
Scope Your SAP HANA Migration Readiness
You’ll need to audit your system to see how well prepared you are for migration. Depending on your needs, you may want to do a proof-of-concept as well, to demo and test your solution and earn buy-in within your organization.
The outcome of your audit can have a major effect on your migration path and timetable. Tasks like sanitizing your data, unravelling and weeding out custom code, performing a Unicode conversion and upgrading SAP ERP to a more current version can require a significant amount of time and resources, which need to be factored into your plan.
Traditionally, auditing your landscape itself could be a time-consuming task, with a significant cost associated. However, Protera has automated the process with FlexBridge. We offer free migration assessments, which can show you exactly what changes your system needs for an SAP migration, no strings attached.
Define Success and Plan Your Path to HANA
As you learn more about your system, and consult with your partner, you’ll be able to put together a more concrete plan. Your SAP partners will help you set goals for the functionality and performance of your landscape, as well as the timeframe and budget of your migration.
You’ll then break these goals down into concrete steps to structure your migration. You’ll have to consider a number of factors, such as:
- Hosting environment — cloud or on-premise
- Hosting provider
- Your migration strategy — if you’re moving to Suite on HANA, you probably won’t want a greenfield migration (rebuilding your system from scratch). However, you may have to consider whether to consolidate your landscape, or move separate components to the cloud and consolidate later.
Track Your Suite on HANA Migration Progress
As you proceed through the HANA migration process, you’ll need to track your progress and discuss necessary changes at each phase, in preparation for the next step. SAP Activate methodology divides the project into iterative phases, with certain problems that must be solved at each step of the project, which makes it relatively easy to keep your team on track and stakeholders informed of the progress of the migration.
However, the tools you use to execute and track each step of the project are largely up to you and your vendor. This creates a lot of variation between vendors, particularly in areas like automation and project management. This can create extra work (and it introduces the opportunity to introduce human error into the mix) and can make tracking somewhat of a challenge, since the tools aren’t sufficiently integrated.
This is another area where FlexBridge shines. FlexBridge makes use of SAP, third-party and in-house tools, integrated into a single migration platform. There’s little work required to track projects, and everything that can be automated is, allowing stakeholders to concentrate on the areas that require human understanding.
Prepare for Post-Migration
After migration, you’ll be running on essentially a new system. If you have all the right processes and support staff in place with the requisite know-how, there will be little friction, and quick ROI. But if you aren’t prepared, you’ll lose productivity, struggle with performance and you’ll turn your organization off future important upgrades. It’s crucial to make sure you’re ready for the big day.
The biggest key is simply practice and training. Before migration, your technical team does a dress rehearsal, running through the whole process to make sure there are no surprises when it’s time for the actual migration. Anyone involved in the post-migration process should also practice, whether their job is IT support, SAP administration or tracking ROI.
Check-in Post Migration
Once you’ve completed your SAP Suite on HANA migration, it can be tempting to go back to business as usual, and stop worrying about digital transformation for a while.
However, the first few weeks after your migration are crucial to the success of your IT strategy. Your company is using the new system, and they’re attuned to differences between it and the old one. Your IT staff will be tweaking and tuning SAP HANA, and cementing SAP maintenance routines. And your partners will have the experience fresh in their minds as well.
That’s why it’s a good idea to meet after working with your new system for a few weeks to debrief and plan the next phase of your migration. You can discuss your experience and plan for any potential next steps. That can include small tweaks to parts of your workflow to address pain points post-migration, along with planning the next phase of your journey to your ultimate destination — SAP S/4HANA.
Start a New Era on Suite on HANA
Your SAP landscape is a key piece of infrastructure. But with Suite on HANA, it can be a tool for growth and innovation as well. With careful preparation and the right partner, the move to HANA can be the start of something great within your organization.
Contact us to learn how Protera can help.
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