SAP S/4HANA Implementation


Businesses require robust systems that provide them with a comprehensive view of all their operations. In short, they need an Enterprise Resource Planning system. An ERP system comprises a lot of modules that are useful for the efficient and ideal functioning of a business. 

Gone are the days when organizations relied on manual methods that were time-consuming and error-prone. Now is the time to leverage the new-age technology that has paved the way for newer and advanced systems to take care of business operations.

With AI and automation, businesses no longer need to use legacy systems or rely on age-old techniques. The manual systems can be done away with to pave the way for mechanisms that actually foster growth.

SAP S4/HANA is a new-age system that offers much more than a regular ERP system. The fundamental benefits S4/HANA has over the older ERP systems are as follows:

  • Real-time insights
  • Faster performance
  • Greater agility
  • Reduced costs

This article sheds more light on a lot of aspects such as the SAP S/4HANA implementation steps and SAP S/4HANA migration.

S/4HANA Implementation Phases

SAP S/4HANA implementation methodology involves a six-phase approach. They are as mentioned here:

  • Discover is the phase where businesses need to understand how SAP S/4 HANA can help them achieve their objectives.
  • Prepare is the stage where the enterprises are getting ready for the change.
  • Explore is the next stage and it involves testing S4/HANA and how it can help them meet their requirements.
  • Realize is the phase where the actual migration takes place.
  • Deploy refers to the stage where the system gets deployed and implemented.

Run is the phase where the users can seek support to get the best out of the system.

Logistics Execution (LE) - How will BPX help Implement

SAP S/4HANA Implementation Project Plan

The SAP S4/HANA implementation project plan involves the steps that we have discussed in the previous section. However, when we speak of the project plan, we also understand the amount of time taken to complete each stage.

Phase 1: Discover: Takes 2 to 3 months

Phase 2: Prepare: Takes 3 to 4 months

Phase 3: Realize: Takes 2 to 3 months

Phase 4: Deploy: Takes 1 to 2 months

This is the estimated duration for a sample project plan and the timelines can vary based on the unique business requirements. 

S/4HANA Greenfield Implementation Steps and Brownfield Implementation Steps

S/4HANA Greenfield implementation and SAP Brownfield implementation steps can be similar in terms of the stages. Let’s check the stages they involve:

Business readiness: This is an estimation to gauge the existing business landscape.

Planning: This step is all about developing a detailed implementation plan that includes the project scope, objectives, timeline, and budget.

System Installation and Configuration: S4/HANA is configured to meet the specific business needs. 

SAP S/4 HANA Data Migration: The existing data is migrated from the older system to S4/HANA.

Testing and User Acceptance Testing: This step ensures that the newly deployed system is working well. Also, the users’ feedback is collected to implement modifications if needed.

Go-live: The system goes live for the real users such as managers and stakeholders.

Support and Maintenance: This step is important if there are any technical glitches or issues with the functioning of the system. 

The major difference between Greenfield and Brownfield implementation is that Greenfield is S4/HANA implementation without any existing data or processes. On the other hand, the Brownfield method is an upgrade of an existing SAP system to S4/HANA system.


This section addresses some of the most commonly asked questions regarding SAP S/4 HANA implementation.

The S4/HANA implementation steps take place in the following phases:

  • Discover: This phase focuses on understanding the needs and requirements of the business. S4/HANA implementation can help in achieving those goals.
  • Prepare: This phase calls for the businesses to prepare to implement SAP S4/HANA. The stage also includes developing the project plan along with the testing environment.
  • Realize: This phase is about configuring and implementing S4/HANA. The stage also includes migrating data, testing it, and training the end-users.
  • Deploy: This is the phase where S4/HANA goes live or becomes ready to use. This also includes disconnecting from the old system to S4/HANA. Furthermore, the phase also ensures that the users get the required support in the process of transition.
  • Run: This phase is about managing and operating SAP S4/HANA. Monitoring the system for its performance and security are some other tasks that are accomplished at this stage.

There are a total of 14 modules in SAP S4/HANA. Here they are:

  1. Finance – FI
  2. Controlling – CO
  3. Sales and Distribution – SD
  4. Materials Management – MM
  5. Production Planning – PP
  6. Plant Maintenance – PM
  7. Project Systems – PS
  8. Human Capital Management – HCM
  9. Supply Chain Management – SCM
  10. Customer Relationship Management – CRM
  11. Human Resources – HR
  12. Investment Management -IM
  13. Enterprise Performance Management – EPM
  14. Customer Service – CS

There are mainly two types of implementation of HANA and they are described as follows:

Greenfield: This method involves implementing HANA from scratch on a new hardware and software platform. Most companies that are new and are starting out with SAP opt for this type. With this option, they can bring about an impactful change to their IT landscape.

Brownfield: In this method, the existing SAP applications and data are migrated to HANA. This is a popular choice among the companies that have already implemented SAP and also wish to get the advantages of HANA. Moreover, this way, they will not have to bring about a complete overhaul of their systems.

The best type to suit your company can be determined best by the kind of requirements the company has. Also, apart from the above two methods, there are several hybrid approaches.

S4/HANA stands for Suite for High-Performance Analytic Appliance. It is an Enterprise Resource Planning System that is developed by SAP SE. Also, it is designed to run on the SAP HANA in-memory database space.

The system is created by keeping in mind the requirements of organizations of any size. Furthermore, it caters to the needs of a wide range of sectors ranging from manufacturing, healthcare, retail, and so on.

A SAP S4/HANA implementation partner is a company that specializes in helping other enterprises in implementing the SAP S4/HANA system. Owing to their certification or partner status, you can be sure of their services and support. 

The partner companies excel at delivering various services associated with the implementation of the SAP S4/HANA system. Here are some areas where the implementation partner can play a crucial role:

  • Assessment of the business’s existing IT landscape and its readiness for the deployment of S4/HANA
  • The partners can help the companies in developing a detailed plan of implementation.
  • The partners can effectively train the users or the business managers to use the system to the best of their capabilities.
  • Businesses can also receive ongoing support from the certified partners throughout the deployment as well as after it.

If your business needs SAP S4/HANA and you are considering implementing it in your processes, then opt for a certified partner who can cover all the above points adroitly.

BPX, being a certified SAP partner, enables businesses to implement SAP S4/HANA and provide the right support essential for its ideal operability. 

Additionally, BPX offers a lot more reasons for businesses to opt for it on their journey to S4/HANA deployment. Let’s see some of those reasons here:

Competent team: BPX takes pride in its competent and skilled team of experts. The team is diligently devoted to guiding their clients toward an ideal ecosystem that helps them use SAP S4/HANA. 

Experience: With time, BPX has earned an experience in driving the SAP S4/HANA functionalities. This experience guides them in helping their customers to get the maximum out of the implementation.

Support: BPX offers complete support before, during, and after the implementation. There could be some issues that may make the new users wary of the newly deployed system. The expertise and experience of the BPX team can guide them on their way forward.

Let’s Talk!