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Creating the ideal roadmap for SAP S/4HANA

Why X-raying your system unlocks a shortcut?

Tiia Kokko / September 13, 2019

Want to know how to get started with your SAP S/4HANA transformation? Consider these steps and let BLUEFIELD™ put you in the driver’s seat.

In a year when CIOs and decision-makers worldwide are weighing the benefits of moving to SAP S/4HANA, the task of putting together a roadmap tailored to individual business needs will be the deal-breaker for moving forward.

As mentioned in my earlier post which introduced Tieto’s partnership with SNP Group, and the BLUEFIELD™ approach now available to Nordic companies, there is no shortage of complexity when it comes to transforming an existing IT environment. That’s why our methodology for moving to S/4HANA puts an overwhelming emphasis on preparedness.

The more proactive you can be, the better chance you stand of achieving a smooth journey that avoids downtime as well as unforeseen costs. 

When SAP introduced SAP S/4HANA, the company’s Readiness Check scan was deployed to vendors. At Tieto this check is an integral part of our assessment process for S/4HANA customers – but it’s not the only tool in our belt. 

Deep level scan eliminates costly surprises

In addition to following all of SAP’s best practices in the pre-project phase, Tieto uses a completely unique set of tools developed by our partner SNP Group, which provides a much deeper view of system usage.

The SNP analysis called system scan provides a deep-dive view of your current system. It provides a technical analysis of used SAP Modules, Organizational Units, Tables, Repository and System Usage. This information allows you to understand complexity and scale for your S/4HANA transformation and select a “best fit” approach for your enterprise.

The scan can be expanded to include communication with surrounding systems. The interface scanner enables automatic discovery, analysis and documentation of your communications topology. Interface scanner identifies every interface connected to the source ECC system in a view that can be filtered to focus on interface usage by volume, by connection type, system module, and usage by production or non-production environments. All of this information helps companies make wise decisions in the pre-planning phase.

To make analysis easier, SNP has developed a visualization tool called CrystalBridge which puts scan results in a format that is easy to interpret. The tool helps you expand the analysis and uncover hidden surprises up front – before data loads get underway and make it harder to reverse course. CrystalBridge serves as a cockpit throughout the whole transformation project and guides the way forward with fact-based data.

This saves you a lot of potential trouble. As Manuel Kutscher, Sales Manager, SNP Group, puts it when summing up the importance of CrystalBridge: “If you build a thorough understanding of your system and how the S/4HANA migration will impact your processes, then changes can be made easily, but only if you identify those gaps early on.”

The tool also enables us to propose a roadmap that is 100 percent customized and takes every nuance of your existing system into account, from module usage by selected enterprise units and different cost and profit centers to master data and system connections.

Thanks to the Tieto-SNP Group partnership and the unique CrystalBridge visualization tool, Nordic customers can graphically plan, profile and predict the outcome of their transformation projects.

Complexity of Landscape simplification

Planning for S/4HANA with just one ERP can cause headaches, but what if there are several SAP systems running in your current landscape?

Companies that have more than one SAP environment typically want to simplify their landscape as they move to S/4HANA. Having multiple systems makes planning very time-consuming. Luckily, there are tools available for this type of situation as well – developed by SNP.

SNP Master Data Analysis provides view on cross-system data. It helps you to understand data quality and usage of master data in these systems. With this information you can compare and identify a golden record for migration purposes. Results can be used for data harmonization and cleansing activities. SNP tools can save you from months of work effort due to pre-defined data relevancy rules that fast track master data analysis, selection and harmonization from a single or multisystem environment. Without automation tools these rules could easily take 6 to 12 months to develop.

SNP Landscape Analysis supports decision making related to cross-system harmonization. There are tools available for Customizing and Repository analysis. A visual illustration of results enables you to make fast comparisons between different systems. You get valuable insights on inconsistencies and differences in customizations and custom developments between the systems, which makes the planning process far easier to manage.

Hit the ground running with BLUEFIELD™

The importance of laying a solid foundation early on and addressing data gaps cannot be overstated. In our view, it as a prerequisite for creating a business case for any SAP S/4HANA transformation journey – one that management can get behind.

Beyond this point, by choosing the BLUEFIELD™ approach offered jointly by Tieto and SNP Group, companies can implement S/4HANA in an automated and fully flexible way.

Some typical concerns that customers can address by choosing BLUEFIELD™:

Our IT team prefers a technical S/4 upgrade to secure business continuity first, but we understand business is eagerly waiting for new innovations to be realized as well.

How do we identify the business benefits, the value they bring and create a roadmap that deals with both aspects at the same time?

Answer: With the Bluefield approach you can combine both views flexibly. It supports selective reuse of good functioning as-is processes and selective renewal of processes where S/4HANA brings value. Tieto’s consultants will carry out business impact assessment to establish 1) a prioritized list of new features and functionalities, 2) the quantified business benefits and 3) the roadmap for bringing these features into use.

We have considered going with a Greenfield implementation, since our current SD process is heavily customized and contains lot of obsolete data, which means that we would need to do a massive archiving exercise before going for a Brownfield upgrade.

Is this Bluefield solution something we could still consider?

Answer: With the Bluefield approach you can truly combine best of Green and Brown. Bluefield allows companies to do a selective process renewal – taking working processes into S/4 as-is and only redesigning the processes that have business value. In terms of data Bluefield allows companies to perform a selective data migration, i.e migrating the data into S/4 based on business need and leaving all obsolete data behind without any need for archiving. We can start with x-raying your system with SNP System scan and plan the best fit journey for you based on results.

All of the above should give decision-makers a confidence boost, particularly when faced with an S/4HANA transition that needs to address the reality of already having SAP systems in use that perhaps were implemented two decades ago or more, with huge volumes of existing data. Every project phase supported and accelerated by software reduces project times by up to 70% over traditional methods.

In my next blog I will explain how the BLUEFIELD™ approach works in practice, what decoupling of systems and data mean and how to achieve true flexibility.

If you want to kickstart your journey with automated analyses, read more about our starter package for System scan.

Subscribe to this blog or contact our SAP S/4HANA team of specialists with your questions.

Tiia Kokko
SAP Sales and Innovation

Tiia helps customers to become intelligent enterprises using real-time data and insights across operations. Tiia is passionate about business driven transformations where customers simplify their business processes and modernize their IT architectures to better serve customers and operations. Tiia has extensive experience both in management consulting and implementation businesses. She leads Tieto’s SAP sales for strategic customers and SAP offering & innovation portfolio.


Tiia Kokko

SAP Sales and Innovation

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