SAP Announces SAP S/4HANA Enterprise Management. An exciting new chapter!

Today, at SAP TechEd in Barcelona, SAP announced the next update for the SAP S/4HANA suite, on-premise and cloud editions.  Read the official announcement.
What does all this really mean?  Well, for starters, it means that SAP is fulfilling their commitment to make your future experience with SAP solutions much simpler, more targeted, less complex, and more intuitive and modern. They are committed to a robust suite of solutions who’s user experience is more in line with the way you use consumer apps in your daily life.  From where I sit, this is music to my ears!  This is a new and refreshed SAP, and I am excited to see it in action!
S/4HANA started with Simple Finance.  This was a redesign and transformation of the finance functionality to take advantage of the new S/4HANA technology (described below), and SAP’s commitment to a simpler user experience and less complex application design. Now, with this release, other “mission-critical business processes across lines of business” have been redesigned, transformed, and added to the suite.  This suite is called SAP S/4HANA Enterprise Management and it’s the next-generation ERP business suite from SAP, designed for the digital business.
When you read through the press release, I’m sure you, like me, will have many questions. Rightfully so, this is big change.  And… we all know that change is a learning process.  Super Users help users through change all the time.  So, let’s dig in and start our #LearnyJourney.  I want to start off with the basics.  I don’t want to assume everyone knows this stuff! If you do, bear with me.
  • S/4HANA.  Think Microsoft operating systems from DOS to Windows95 to WindowsXP to Windows 8, etc…  For SAP, it’s R/1, R/2, R/3, ERP, S/4HANA.  It’s the next generation.
  • S/4HANA technology.  SAP completely redesigned the database technology where your data is stored.  Very simply stated, this redesigned technology keeps all your data in memory, not stored on a disk. This opens the door up for extreme speed and innovation. This is an over simplification, so I will dig more into this in a later date communication.
  • Digital Core.  This refers to the core SAP ERP that we all know today, redesigned to fully integrate all digital data into your business processes.  Well, I don’t know about you, but that still seems a little murky to me.  So how about this, you will have the ability to access, integrate, and analyze real-time information within the work you do in SAP.  This can include digital data from IoT (see bullet above), to data from social apps, to other applications like Ariba, SuccessFactors, and more.
  • On-premise vs. cloud editions.  On-premise means you are running and managing your own SAP servers and software. Your company is responsible for servicing and upgrading. Cloud means your company subscribes to a service that maintains your software for you. Configuration is still performed by your IT teams in the on-premise edition, but cloud editions are not customizable so the functionality embedded is defined and updated by SAP directly in the cloud.  Both of these deployment options use the SAP Fiori user interface, so for Super Users and users, this is pretty transparent, you still log in to your SAP systems and work.
  • LoB – Lines of Business.  Think departments.  SAP listed 10 of them in the press release.  Send Ashley all 10 and get entered into a drawing for a $25 gift card and a free 1 year membership to SAPinsight. Winner will be announced at the beginning of the December 9, 2015 webcast.
  • IoT – Internet of Things.  In the SAP world, this refers to devices and machines that are digitally connected to the core ERP, S/4HANA, through the use of digital sensors.  For example, you have a machine in your plant that has a temperature sensor.  The data from this sensor can be integrated into your SAP system so that it can be monitored.  If overheating occurs, you can be notified through your core processes in SAP, in real-time, so that you can take immediate action, like ordering a replacement part through the procurement application, and scheduling a service technician – now that’s preventative maintenance!  And what if that notification is served up to you through your mobile phone or pad?  The possibilities here are pretty exciting!!!  Super Users will be a part of “dreaming and scheming the once impossible!”
  • SAP Fiori.  This is the new user interface.  It’s not just new, it is redesigned to deliver a modern, seamless, and intuitive business process and work experience that is the same across desktop, mobile, or other we-based devices (even smart watches!).  Now THAT’s smart!
OK, so what do you think so far?  Well, there’s much more to come as we continue our #S/4HANA #LearnyJourney (Twitter hashtags to follow).  If you like what you see so far, let us know with a Like and/or Comment on this LinkedIn Group Discussion.
Want to hear more?  SAP is delivering a webcast just for you!
SAP’s Carl Dubler, Sr. Director: Product Marketing, Product Management   along with Ryan O’Neil, Head of SAP S/4HANA Marketing, North America, and extreme Super User advocate  have agreed to deliver a special press announcement webcast to the SAPinsight Community on December 9, 2015.  On this webcast you will hear the interesting details behind the announcement, as well as have an opportunity to get your questions answered. Register now!  It’s limited to 50 attendees.
Submit your comments and questions for the webcast in thisLinkedIn group discussion. Don’t have a LinkedIn account, you can send them to Ashley.  We will provide them to Carl and Ryan prior to the webcast.
SAP is committed to keeping the SAPinsight Community ‘in the loop’ about the latest product and services information.  They know that information and education is essential to your role in helping your line of business make the most informed decisions about process improvements.
Having SAP reach out to SAPinsight, to make sure you have the latest information in a way that is meaningful to you, is an exciting sign that SAP is changing who they are, and how they support you and your business.  Not only do I ♥ SAP Super Users, so does SAP!!!

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