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SAP Streamlines Cloud ERP Adoption at TechEd

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Key Takeaways

⇨ SAP S/4HANA Cloud, public edition, three-system landscape, parallel project line offers additional testing and configuration flexibility.

⇨ There will be a new reward program for customers maintaining a clean core in SAP S/4HANA Cloud, private edition.

⇨ A new large project model will provide a foundation for generative-AI powered applications in SAP Signavio.

SAP’s goal is for all of their customers to eventually move to cloud ERP, ideally within a RISE with SAP construct. However, the move to SAP S/4HANA is not necessarily straightforward, even for customers planning a system conversion that leverages SAP S/4HANA Cloud, private edition. In an effort to streamline the move to cloud ERP, SAP announced a number of offerings at TechEd. This includes a parallel project line feature for SAP S/4HANA Cloud, public edition, three-system landscape, a reward program for cloud ERP clean core, streamlined cloud adoption using Accelerate for GROW with SAP, and a generative AI digital advisor for process optimization.

One of the challenges for organizations using SAP S/4HANA Cloud, public edition is the ability to have effective testing landscapes. To address this challenge, SAP is announcing SAP S/4HANA Cloud, public edition, three-system landscape, parallel project line. This offering will come with two additional tenants, one for testing and one for customizing. The tenant for customizing will be connected to SAP Central Business Configuration with the goal of providing increased flexibility and business configuration enhancements without disrupting the operations of other tenants. This will show how changes impact the production system and increase the flexibility of testing and configuration.

Clean core is a concept that has not always been well understood by the SAP community, with organizations largely correlating it with eliminating customizations in the ERP system. However, there is much more to clean core than just customizations. To help encourage SAP S/4HANA Cloud, private edition customers to adopt the concept, SAP is introducing a reward program. In the program, RISE with SAP customers will be able to earn annual credits through the SAP BTP Enterprise Agreement (BTPEA) model to pay for SAP BTP usage. The ERP clean core dashboard will be available to administrators in the SAP for Me portal and will help navigate clean core metrics and KPIs to monitor progress. Customers will begin to receive benefits at the start of the second year of their contract and qualification will be evaluated annually.

GROW with SAP is essentially identical to RISE with SAP but is intended for mid-sized organizations that are net-new users of SAP ERP systems. Accelerate for GROW with SAP provides a collection of services, tools, and methodologies to help companies streamline their core business processes and more readily move to cloud ERP. Accelerate for GROW with SAP includes a packaged application service, digital discovery assessment, SAP Cloud ALM, and the SAP Activate methodology.

Lastly, SAP announced that they are launching a large process model (LPM). The LPM is similar to a large language model (LLM) for a generative AI offering but is specific to business processes. This new LPM will provide the foundation for generative AI-powered applications within SAP Signavio solutions. SAP intends that the LPM will be able to be used for process improvement recommendations, best-practice recommendations, process analytics, content creation, and process data augmentation. The first solution that SAP intends to deliver using the LPM is a process and KPI recommender capability. This will provide AI-powered insights and recommendations to help their transformation processes. The LPM and the process and KPI recommender capability are planned for the second quarter of 2024.

What Does This Mean for SAPinsiders?

Most existing SAP customers moving to SAP S/4HANA Cloud are using the private cloud edition as it offers increased flexibility with deployment options and some customization capabilities. These are not possible in SAP S/4HANA Cloud, public edition. However, SAP is pushing organizations to adopt a clean core strategy in order to make it easier for them to deploy new software versions and to move away from staying on old software releases as was the case with many SAP R/3 and SAP ECC deployments. The new capabilities that the parallel project line offers in SAP S/4HANA Cloud, public edition will make the adoption and testing in this environment easier.

SAP’s new clean core reward program represents a carrot to those that are not yet leveraging clean core in their SAP S/4HANA Cloud, private edition deployments. While the credits that are received will go towards the BTPEA, this could be of interest to many organizations although the details will be in just how much benefit it is possible to earn — even for those that are not actively considering clean core.

GROW with SAP is not targeted at existing SAP ERP customers so there will be little benefit to SAPinsiders, but the LPM that SAP is building for SAP Signavio could offer significant benefits in process improvement for those that are leveraging SAP Signavio tools for process transformation. Although some SAP Signavio capabilities are available in RISE with SAP, they are limited in what they can offer. If organizations are interested in process streamlining and transformation, these new SAP Signavio capabilities will be worth investing when they are launched in 2024.

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