Changes and Challenges with S/4HANA (Part 1)

Many SAP customers see SAP S/4HANA as a direct upgrade for their ECC system. However, it is an entirely new product line of SAP that requires a fresh installation, configuration and transfer of your old data. SAP issued a Simplification List to document all changes, as far as they are known yet.

Changes in S/4 HANA

In the old SAP ERP, there are sometimes multiple ways to execute a business process. In S/4HANA, SAP tries to unify and standardize these processes. For instance, there were multiple transactions to register a vendor invoice with the same functions from different modules (Material Management or Finance). With S/4 HANA, SAP offers only one application for this function: Invoice Management.

The new business suite integrates core transactions in S/4HANA and new functionality and innovations in SAP Cloud solutions. So, for example, CRM now part of SAP Hybris, HR Management is part of SAP SuccessFactors and you can process travel expenses can in SAP Concur.

Functions, which were previously used as separate instances of the SAP Business Suite, will be bundled in SAP S/4HANA. For example, Materials Management, SAP Supplier Relationship Management (SAP SRM) and SAP Supplier Lifecycle Management (SAP SLC) will be bundled in the new core module “sProcurement”.


The biggest change may be the introduction of S/4HANA Finance (also known as Simple Finance), which is also an add-on for ECC systems, but for S/4HANA it is mandatory. It brings a lot of new features with it, such as:

  • The new General Ledger
  • The Business Partner Approach
  • The new Central Journal (Table ACDOCA)

These changes bring new or extend existing transactions while replacing old ones. For example, a lot of financial transactions will be replaced due to the new Business Partner Approach. The following transactions FD01, FD02, FD03, FD05, FD06, FK01, FK02, FK03, FK05, FK06, FK08 and a lot more will be replaced by the transaction BP which works with the new Central Journal. The Simplification List linked above has a list of all these transactions.

However, as you may already have guessed, these new transactions bring many changes to your existing roles and related authorization objects. As a result, migration to S/4 HANA often requires an optimization or even partial redesign of your current roles concept. The Xiting Authorization Management Suite (XAMS) can help simplify such a migration. So stay tuned for another blog post with more details!

Changes and Challenges with S/4HANA Part 2

Changes and Challenges with S/4HANA Part 3


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