With so much hullabaloo about HANA, what is in there for Clients who are currently using SRM?
Where are the business benefits envisaged? Is it just ‘improvement in performance’ or are there any process improvements just on account of HANA?
Firstly, with HANA’fication of SRM, SAP has clearly promised substantial performance improvement in areas where SRM 7.0x has historically been blamed for being painfully slow, as much as 6 to 8 times in various scenarios. For instance, the Personalized Object Work List (POWL) refresh and search speed for SRM Shopping carts and Purchase orders are indicated to go up by 7 times and those for SRM Contracts go up by 5 times, and Sourcing cockpit search speed goes up by 7 times.
Secondly, from a process perspective, the one ‘strategic’ pointer we see coming from SAP now is that they are bringing in ‘shopping cart requisitioning’ within S/4 HANA itself (though there is no news about a road map on the rest of the functionality). The grand vision, from what one hears is that processes currently running out of SRM (and other external SAP boxes like CRM, SCM) would eventually get merged into S/4 HANA. However, this is possibly expected to happen in few years from now though it is not known how soon in the future.
Thirdly, it is important to note ‘SRM on HANA’ does not involve ‘data model’ optimization as in the case of Simple Finance or Simple Logistics where SAP has optimized the number of database tables. In other words, it simply means SRM, instead of running on Oracle, SQL Server or other databases, once migrated, would then run on HANA database with the table structures remaining AS-IS.
All of the above perspectives in mind, as trusted partners to the global SRM clientele, how do we brace ourselves for a Client query on this important emerging topic?
At the outset, SRM can be HANA’fied only with SRM 7.03. In other words, if Clients are currently running SRM 7.02 or earlier version, there will be need for an upgrade to SRM 7.03 with migration to HANA.
Finally, on compatibility of an ‘SRM 7.0x with or without HANA’ system with ‘back end’ SAP systems? Depending on the Client’s current circumstances and immediate future plans, the following combinations will be fine:
- ‘SRM 7.0x’ (w/o HANA) integration to ‘SAP ECC EhPx on HANA’
‘SRM 7.0x (w/o HANA)’ integration to ‘SAP S4 HANA’ system
- ‘SRM 7.03 on HANA’ integration to ‘SAP ECC EhPx (on other databases)’
‘SRM 7.03 on HANA’ integration to ‘SAP ECC EhPx (on HANA)’
‘SRM 7.03 on HANA’ integration to ‘SAP S4 HANA’ system
- ‘SRM 7.03 on HANA’ integration to a mix of multiple back end systems, ‘ECC EhPx (on HANA or on other databases)’ and ‘S4 HANA’ systems
Make your recommendations accordingly – I hope the above note helps clarify some of the haziness in your minds!!!