Differences and Similarities between Business Suite, Suite on Hana and S4Hana
I was working on the SRM Business Suite and recently my team has shifted its focus into S4Hana. My team is ramping up and excited to be working on S4Hana and here is my first blog on the S4H. Since the shift, I have had many questions and doubts in the new domain and I am slowly uncovering the details and here is one burning question from many people. How is Business suite different from Suite on Hana and both of these from S4Hana? This post attempts to answer this question. I am in the procurement team and most of my examples in this post will be in that direction. Please draw parallels to your industry of interest.
Lets start with the thought process that lead to the creation of SAP Business Suite. Till the year 2000, MM was very famous but it had some drawbacks like limited scope in live pricing, system was not platform independent, system setup was not easy, back end was difficult to setup. There was a need to overcome these drawbacks of customer interaction while providing the strengths of the MM feature. In late 2000, business suite was formed. Business suite is a set individual boxes which were self sufficient on their own. These boxes are ERP, CRM, SCM, SRM, PLM. SAP Business Suite software, a set of fully integrated applications such as SAP ERP, SAP CRM, SAP SCM, and SAP SRM, enables enterprises to run their core business operations more efficiently. It provides end-to-end process support for areas such as customer engagement, finance, human resources, manufacturing, procurement, logistics and IT. SRM can be used in various scenarios such as classic, extended classic, coupled, standalone. This box was made to be good to use on its own or in integration with other SAP as well as non-SAP systems.
As the days progressed, technology moved into the mobile world and each one of us carry a mobile device with us. There was a necessity for the Enterprise Business Suite software to be extended towards mobility. The business suite software would load on a desktop browsing window but was not capable to load on the mobile browsing. Fiori, UI5 and SAP HANA were latest technologies at SAP and they were capable of this mobility. Hence the concept of Suite on Hana came up which uses SAP UI5 and fiori and runs on HANA. These applications would change their appearance based on the device it was used on, like mobiles, tablets and desktops. SLog and SProcurement are two such Suite on Hana topics for creation and searching of PRs.
With the Suite on Hana, we were able to realise mobility and now there was a need to define a strong architecture for these apps. It was time to move onto the cloud to reduce the TCO to the customer. S4Hana was born to appease these constraints. SAP started with R/1 as 1 tier real time application, then to 2 tiered R/2 and then to R/3. Now we want to denote the cloud and change in our tiered structure so we have come up with S/4. S4Hana is the short form for SAP Business Suite 4 SAP HANA. S4Hana has its architecture similar to MVC where we use Smart templates for the user interface, CDS for the data and BOPF for the data handling. All the business suite topics are to be remodelled into S4Hana topics. SFinance is S4Hana product already in the market. Many teams are working on creating and transforming their topics to S4Hana. My team we working on MM functionality of Scheduling Agreements.
Thank you for reading. Special thanks to Manikandan Balraj for helping me with the points on this post. Thank you all.