2016 is off to a great start for the SAP community!  Volunteers attended the ASUG January Volunteer Meeting this past weekend in Denver, CO and couldn’t help but notice the excitement around SAP’s strides toward innovation.  As 2016 begins to fly by already, we look back at the leaps made in 2015.  The 2015 year started with a bang with the release of S/4HANA, followed by S/4HANA Enterprise Management and the new SAP Activate implementation methodology. But some of these changes leave the SAP community pondering about the new world of S/4HANA.  What is S/4HANA Enterprise Management? How can the HANA Cloud Platform provide Internet of Things solutions? And, how does SAP Activate optimize implementation? S/4HANA Enterprise Management, the HANA Cloud Platform, and SAP Activate are changing the way SAP enables innovation, customization, and optimization.

After the release of Simple Finance, the SAP community anticipated the next SAP release would include the next S/4HANA module, Simple Logistics. However, on November 11th, SAP released S/4HANA Enterprise Management, the new digital core for the suite of business applications.  So whatever happened to Simple Logistics? Essentially, S/4HANA is the new “Simple”.  Simple Finance is now S/4HANA Finance and S/4HANA Enterprise Management is the new name for the platform that includes Simple Logistics and much more.  S/4HANA Enterprise Management includes functionality in finance, HR, sourcing & procurement, supply chain, manufacturing, sales, and more, providing the foundation for the new wave of innovation.

The SAP HANA Cloud Platform (HCP) is an in-memory Platform-as-a-Service that allows users to extend and develop business applications.  The HCP enables Internet of Things solutions by allowing companies to build and run custom applications in the cloud.  One SAP HCP customer success story is Earlysense, a medical-device company that used HCP to develop an application that monitors patients’ vitals and sends real-time data to doctors and nurses.  The wellness sensor is placed under a patient’s mattress and collects mechanical vibrations from the body.  Patients can monitor their well-being and send alerts/notifications to their doctor all through their smart phone.  This is just one example of how the HANA Cloud Platform is the future of SAP customization.

SAP Activate is the new implementation methodology for the S/4HANA business suite. SAP’s EVP of Global Service & Support and Global Head of Scale, Bend Welz, said, “The design point for Activate was the need to enable customers to adopt new innovations fast.” Activate addresses three components; best practices, methodology, and guided configuration.  Activate differs from previous implementation frameworks because the framework does not only speed up the initial implementation, but continually updates best practices and takes advantage of new functionality over the business application’s lifecycle.

  In closing, S/4HANA Enterprise Management brings the new wave of SAP innovation, the HANA Cloud Platform enables businesses to customize applications, and SAP Activate enables on-going optimization.  2015 was a year of innovation for SAP and the SAP community can look forward to seeing these advancements help businesses Run Simple in 2016.


Katelynn Heckett

Katelynn Heckett