Planning and Consolidation Options in S/4HANA
(updated as of release 1809)
In this blog, the Planning and Consolidation Options are presented along with the recommended choices for a customer. Here is a summary of the Planning and Consolidation tools available in in S/4HANA:
Here are the recommended options for Planning and Consolidations. The choice for a customer depends on the functionality they need and the timing of their implementation. In the long term, the SAP Cloud Platform (SCP) tools are the strategic offerings. Here are the recommended customer choices for Financial Planning and Consolidation:
There are several options that are listed on the next two slides. All the Planning options require an additional license except for the Enterprise Management t/codes. Planning and consolidations has evolved in each release of S/4HANA. The key differentiating features are listed for each tool.
SAP S/4HANA Planning & Consolidation t/codes
Even though the former FI-CO planning t/codes are not strategic, there are times when it may be necessary for the t/codes to be re-activated. For example, if the customer needs to use a robust planning allocation solution leveraging their actual allocation build, there is no equivalent feature in BPC; only a simple allocation solution is offered in BPC. Caution should be used if this solution is implemented because SAP no longer supports this option.
SAP BPC Standard vs. SAP BPC Embedded vs. SAP BPC Optimized for S/4HANA
BPC model types (for example Standard and Embedded) can be combined and used in the same license.
The embedded BPC, formerly called Integrate Business Planning for Finance (IBPf) was rebranded in release 1610 to BPC Optimized for S/4HANA and Consolidations were also added. A limited Embedded BW is available for S/4HANA but it is not intended to be an Enterprise Data Warehouse.
SAP BPC Embedded or IBPf is not the same as IBP which is used for Sales Planning and APO planning. With release 1705 of IBP, the component IBP for S&OP provided for Sample Integration Content for Financial Planning. This would include sample integration content (how-to guide) for bi-directional IBP to BPC integration. IBP for S&OP will be SAP’s main integration point between SCM planning and BPC.
The rule of thumb is to use SAP BPC Optimized for S/4HANA when 80% of the data is in S/4HANA. A compilation note provides more details and the starting point: “2081400 – SAP BPC Optimized for S/4HANA Finance”.
SAP BPC 11 for BW/4HANA
BPC Optimized for S/4HANA and BPC BW/4HANA are two separate code lines which have different features. In the future, SAP will decide how to achieve parity on features, but as they stand they are different. BPC BW/4HANA takes advantage of the new BW/4HANA architecture.
SAP Analytics Cloud integrated with S/4HANA for Planning & S/4HANA for Group Reporting
In the graphics above, Planning and Group reporting are presented in the pillar on the far right for sake of comparison. Going forward they are separate products. The SCP products are different from BPC. They were created by taking the best features of SAPs prior planning and consolidation products. This is where the lion’s share of SAP’s development efforts will be focused.
Planning can be used as a hybrid solution with BPC. When an “excel – free” application with no footprint is needed, this is the recommended product. The new planning tool provides flexibility to the user as well as integration with S/4HANA and the Cloud and real-time results.
Group Reporting was renamed (former Cloud Consolidation) to reflect that it is now an integrated part of the closing process and not simply used to consolidate results. Group reporting is part of S/4HANA components and it can be used in S/4HANA on-premise or cloud, as an independent solution or as a hybrid with Cloud Analytics for reporting and SAP cloud Platform for manual data entry. The Account Executive for the project should be consulted for pricing.
The right Planning & Consolidation solution is both a technical and functional decision. It depends on where the source data is coming from, which features the customer needs and how much data is required to be consumed. The timing of the implementation should also be considered. The SCP tools are where the strategic development will take place, but initially some features are more robust in BPC. The BPC tools will be supported through 2024 so there is no immediate need to move away from those tools.