S/4 Conversion Tools for Success
The truth about the SAP community
SAP has a vision they will quite likely see come to fruition by 2040. Public cloud could be the answer. At the moment, however, many SAP customers are still in the ECC era. Some have customized Enhancement Package 8 and are eagerly studying SAP's S/4 compatibility list. The current problems are not so much cloud computing as a technical release upgrade.
SAP legacy customers seek end-to-end business management solutions and protection for R/3 and ECC Abap modifications. Can the SAP Business Technology Platform with Steampunk, i.e. embedded Abap, be a possible solution? The fact is that many SAP customers are not yet ready to convert to S/4. SAP has lost touch with the community and has blindly rushed ahead, leaving its customers in the dust.
The transparent SAP user
SAP has numerous marketing databases; Data Scientist Nils Niehörster even developed a virtual X-ray machine for SAP that can answer almost all questions pertaining to their target market. Nevertheless, SAP cannot or will not recognize its customers’ true wants and needs.
ERP is not an end in itself. An ERP system is an IT tool, and as long as SAP Business Suite 7 fulfills its purpose, the release upgrade is only an option, not a necessity. Many years ago, the German-speaking SAP user association (DSAG) declared that companies can achieve a successful digital transformation even with Business Suite 7. The switch to Hana and S/4 is not necessary for digitization.
Despite data scientists and marketing databases, SAP does not truly see its customers and has lost sight of their needs. SAP CEO Christian Klein is probably right to have his public cloud vision, but the time is not yet ripe for it. The vast majority of challenges SAP users face cannot be solved by AI, bots, or the cloud.
Signavio and LeanIX
However, SAP may also have somehow recognized the community’s zeitgeist. With Process Mining from Signavio and Enterprise Architecture from LeanIX, SAP now has tools that act as preparatory classes for a successful S/4 conversion. With these two tools and Application Lifecycle Management (ALM), customers now have a much higher chance of a successful S/4 conversion. These tools come late, very late, but nevertheless SAP has recognized the need for tutoring, education, and IT tools.
In this case, the axiom¬¬—the self-evident truth—is that nothing SAP does is necessarily wrong. But SAP’s coordination with its community has become unsynchronized in recent years. SAP has rushed ahead and never looked back, neglecting communication with users, partners, analysts, and journalists. SAP is self-sufficient and completely convinced of its own glory and brilliance. This hubris is currently causing SAP enormous problems, affecting customers’ trust and the company’s credibility, and leading people to challenge SAP's vision. Everyone must now use the tools available and learn as much as possible to ensure their S/4 conversion succeeds.