In brief

In brief

  • For many organizations, the conversion to SAP S/4HANA® is a key component of their transformation into intelligent enterprises.
  • However, there’s no simple one-size-fits-all approach. Each enterprise has to find the right conversion path for its unique circumstances and needs.
  • In this report, Accenture sets out the key decisions and deployment options and explains how it helps organizations accelerate the journey.

SAP S/4HANA: A question of when, not if

In today’s always on and digitally connected world, running a business with real-time data is no longer an aspiration, it’s a necessity.

Organizations are under pressure to engage with customers in new ways, move quickly to capture new opportunities, and develop new products and services. They need to be faster, smarter, more agile, and more connected.

That needs enterprise systems that can scale rapidly and support new technologies like in-memory computing, machine learning, artificial intelligence, microservices, and predictive analytics. It’s why becoming an intelligent enterprise is now an imperative.

SAP S/4HANA is ideally suited to the demands of the intelligent enterprise. But given the need to balance the requirements of current SAP systems, business timetables, and resource availability, how can existing SAP customers best manage the transition?

What’s the right conversion path for your business?

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Each enterprise has to find the conversion path for its unique circumstances and needs. For some, especially those running older versions of SAP software, migrating to an entirely new “greenfield” SAP S/4HANA environment will make most sense.

Many, however, will have existing system components they want to reuse in the new. And for them, a “brownfield” conversion path will likely be the right way forward. An alternative transition approach is available—what Accenture calls “Smart Brownfield”.

Brownfield conversion

Perform upgrade with standard SAP upgrade/migration tools, with process improvements in a subsequent step.

Smart brownfield (hybrid) conversion

Create a shell copy of the leading system with existing implemented processes and perform SAP System Landscape Optimization tool-based migration.

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Organizations also need to decide which of the many SAP S/4HANA deployment options will work for them: on-premises, private cloud, hybrid cloud, public cloud, or SAP-hosted SAP S/4HANA Cloud Edition.

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