Cleansing and Migrating Data into SAP S/4HANA with Data Migration International / JiVS

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Key Takeaways

⇨ Companies that still operate on legacy systems need to plan their transformation journey to SAP S/4HANA.

⇨ To help with this transformation, Data Migration International’s “JiVS’ One Click Transformation” automatically transfers legacy data to its Information Management Platform (IMP).

⇨ Organizations should also consider how they will retire older applications while moving onto new ones.

As the 2027 end of maintenance deadline nears for legacy SAP systems, more and more organizations are coming to terms with what this change will mean for their business. Companies that still operate on these legacy systems will need to plan their transformation journey to SAP S/4HANA. This involves migrating all of their essential business data into the new ERP system. At the outset, the data migration process can seem difficult and time consuming, and each organization will have different requirements and goals for their unique circumstances. However, SAP partner Data Migration / JiVS has established a solution that helps organizations moving to SAP S/4HANA meet their goals.

Data Migration International’s “JiVS’ One Click Transformation” automatically transfers legacy data to its Information Management Platform (IMP). It also features numerous existing adapters to connect to legacy and new systems and, in a highly automated fashion, transforms and cleanses data on the platform before it is transferred to SAP S/4HANA.

According to the 2023 SAPinsider SAP S/4HANA Migration Research Report, the top requirement for organizations moving to SAP S/4HANA was minimal disruption to their operations. Another key requirement was for cleansed and harmonized data across systems. Organizations may struggle to realize the benefits of an SAP S/4HANA implementation if they move over shoddy or unnecessary data.

Organizations should begin planning their migration to SAP S/4HANA if they have not done so already. Research report respondents indicated a strong desire to work with partners that have experience with moving data to SAP S/4HANA.

Time to Value

In moving to SAP S/4HANA, organizations prioritize cleansed and harmonized data across all systems, as well as a data migration strategy that can minimize downtime and quickly demonstrate value. These priorities can sometimes be at odds, as cleansing data can be time-consuming.

Data Migration International’s Regional Director for the Americas Jean-Marc Pestoni explained that many organizations focus on cleansing data that they will not end up needing for the migration, the move to the future digital core SAP S/4HANA. Data Migration International and their flagship product, JiVS helps companies to analyze what data they actually need to migrate with an initial discovery phase before beginning the migration process.

“We see a lot of situations where before customers migrate, they might spend a year trying to improve the existing data quality. Over the years that quality gets diluted. They start a project even before they do the migration with an approach that is extremely cumbersome but also a lot of effort for especially the business. We do it entirely differently. We say, why not go in and start with a discovery phase before you touch the data. We’re only going to focus on the data that is absolutely necessary, that has to be moved into SAP S/4HANA,” said Pestoni.

Pestoni added that only about 5% of data is necessary to bring over in a typical data migration scenario. Identifying and prioritizing that necessary data drastically shortens the time to value within a data migration to SAP S/4HANA, and reduces risks related to such a transformation substantially. Following the discovery phase, The JiVS approach moves all data from ECC or other legacy ERP platforms into its platform in case users need to access it; but also, to prove to the customer – their end users – that they will have access to all their historical data at any time; based on the JiVS user interface and/or even the SAP-end user interface. This also lays the foundation to fully retire the ECC after successful move to SAP S/4HANA – JiVS becomes a single-source-of-truth related to historical data.

“We deal with less data, which takes less time, and a seamless data centric-approach – so we don’t have a downtime problem. The whole process of figuring out zero downtime or near-zero downtime as part of the project, all that goes away because we never have a downtime problem allowing end users full access at any time to all the data,” said Thomas Iseler, Global Strategic Partnerships Lead at Data Migration / JiVS.

JiVS can accommodate a Greenfield or Brownfield approach, depending on what use case works best for the particular customer and business case.

Case Study: Hawle Armaturen AG

Hawle Armaturen AG, a Swiss manufacturing company. realized that the shift to SAP S/4HANA posed some significant hurdles. Over the years, the organization accumulated cumbersome legacy data. Incomplete, erroneous, and duplicate records threatened to reduce the potential benefits of SAP’s latest software generation.

“This was exactly the situation we found ourselves in at the end of 2021. We tried to use scripts to migrate the data from the old to the new system. This was very time-consuming and that’s why we were looking for an alternative solution,” said Marc Veraguth, Head of ICT at Hawle Armaturen AG.

After an extensive market analysis, the management team found Data Migration / JiVS. In December 2021, Hawle signed the contract with Data Migration / JiVS, and the data migration journey commenced in January 2022. The timeline was tight, with a mandate to complete the migration, transformation, and data quality optimization by mid-March. The user acceptance test was scheduled for the end of March, followed by the go-live date on May 2.

“The cooperation between Data Migration International, our IT, and the key users, especially during the two-week test phase in March, worked very well. After only three months, we had completed the project for data migration and transformation to SAP S/4HANA and were able to go live and work productively with SAP S/4HANA on the scheduled date. Just half an hour after going live, we delivered the first order,” said Marc Veraguth.

Application retirement

Many organizations think only about how to move their data into new applications. But what about addressing the application they just moved from? Data Migration / JiVS has retired well over 100 applications, helping organizations complete the process of moving to S/4HANA by handling historical data. This is an essential step in the migration process.

Data Migration International has worked with organizations of all sizes and industries in many regions across the world, giving it the necessary experience to meet any local compliance guidelines that organizations need to follow with their data.

“Compliance, legal, and taxes, are deep in our DNA, driven by guidelines such as GDPR in Europe. In the U.S. it’s more CCPA. We are used to providing solutions that are always 100% compliant with those guidelines,” said Pestoni.

Automation

Data Migration / JiVS is working continuously to bolster and add to the automation and AI capabilities within their platform. The company has partnered with organizations like Google to develop forward-looking AI capabilities to make data migrations as seamless as possible.

These automation projects include templates to help companies move to SAP S/4HANA, making the process more end-user friendly, and to improve access to historical data.

Automation will be an essential tool for the tens of thousands of SAP organizations that still have yet to move from ECC to S/4HANA. As the end of maintenance date nears, companies will be unable to achieve the speed they need to meet the 2027 deadline.

“SAP feels the pain of 40,000 customers worldwide who are on ECC and have to move to SAP S/4HANA in the next couple of years when maintenance ends. And if you look at the customer base, maybe 20% have moved to SAP S/4HANA or have started some projects, but the majority have not yet done that step. That’s the challenge. They need more automation. SAP needs to do whatever it can working with partners such as us, to move the customer base over. You don’t have the resources in the market just to do these projects in the classical way anymore,” said Data Migration International’s Chief Marketing Officer Tom Pfister.

Automation will also play an essential role for organizations with recent mergers and acquisitions. When one company acquires another, it inherits all its incumbent data issues – often in a non-SAP ERP system. Data Migration / JiVS offers the ability to help move non-SAP data to SAP S/4HANA, helping consolidate complex landscapes.

“We are one of the few vendors that actually supports both moving from SAP ECC to SAP S/4HANA as well as from any other application to SAP S/4HANA,” said Pestoni.

What This Means for SAPinsiders

Many SAP organizations have yet to begin their SAP S/4HANA migrations – many of them have yet to even enact a planning phase. These organizations are likely to run into significant challenges as they attempt to migrate their data from legacy system. Each company will have their own unique challenges but will want similar outcomes – cleaned and harmonized data that is moved to SAP S/4HANA quickly.

To help these organizations meet their goals, Data Migration International and their product JiVS provide a platform that simultaneously cleanses and migrates data by focusing only on what is essential. This platform ensures compliance and minimizes downtime. Data Migration International is powered by AI and automation capabilities that help speed up time to value. This platform can help organizations minimize technical debt while bolstering data quality – all while ensuring that they meet the 2027 SAP end of maintenance deadline.

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