Highlights of the SAP #S4HANA Cloud 1802 Release
Today, we’re happy to announce the general availability of the SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1802 release. Our first release update of 2018 includes several innovations that make our solution even more future ready and, taken together, further evolve SAP S/4HANA Cloud towards the intelligent enterprise: With SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1802, we leverage not only great innovations in the areas of machine learning and predictive analytics, but combine and enrich these, by means of our digital assistant, SAP CoPilot, with many other functionalities.
Check out my video below that introduces my top three business-driven innovations for this quarter:
SAP S/4HANA Cloud for finance
Predictive accounting for incoming sales orders
One of the highlights in the finance area is predictive accounting for incoming sales orders. Being able to dig deep into every aspect of a company’s performance is a valuable asset for both its leadership and investors. Predictive Accounting allows them to stay ahead of the curve and extends the reach of sales accounting even further than this, as even GAAP processes that are not yet relevant today are taken into account.
Figure 1: Incoming Sales Orders app showing orders that have been captured but not yet shipped or billed
Automated payment processing with SAP Leonardo Machine Learning
Moreover, SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1802 includes our new automated payment advice processing, leveraging SAP Leonardo, adding a cloud-based Machine Learning service that fully integrates with SAP S/4HANA Cloud. This innovation drastically reduces manual efforts; the service extracts required information about payments from unstructured information documents (such as bank statements), structures this information, and automatically initiates the clearing process. This saves time and costs, as more payments can be processed in less time, and less errors are made due to repeated manual involvement. In fact, businesses can scale much faster and more easily by freeing their employees for value-adding activities.
SAP S/4HANA Cloud for manufacturing
Manage Buffer Levels app
In the manufacturing area, SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1802 adds great innovative capabilities to the functionalities around our demand-driven replenishment. In addition to providing functions to process planned adjustment factors and time-dependent (future) buffer levels, we now also offer capabilities to process demand-driven replenishment planning and execution from end to end. It’s great news as well that, as of SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1802, our solution is certified for its DDMRP compliance by the Demand Driven Institute.
Figure 2: Manage Buffer Levels app showing plan adjustment factors and buffer levels
Quality control chart and record results for inspection points
Additionally, SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1802 leverages innovations beneficial to quality management that are related to the recording of results during the production process. Employees in quality management are provided with capabilities for statistical process control as well as with the new quality control chart to monitor and control the quality of production processes from end to end.
Moreover, the new Record Results for Inspection Points SAP Fiori app enables quality management to record inspection results where multiple results are captured for a common inspection lot operation. The benefit of this time-based app is that results for inspection lots can be recorded more efficiently, more easily, and much faster. Even the error-rate is reduced as quality managers can freely define inspection points throughout the process.
SAP S/4HANA Cloud for professional services
Plan non-billable work packages
SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1802 also leverages a few innovations in professional services. As of this release, our solution supports the need of the professional services industry to provide services to customers without charging them, which may be necessary to win a certain customer deal, during the ramp-up phase of a project, or simply to show goodwill in client services. Project managers now can plan and categorize non-billable work packages in ‘time and expense’ projects. The non-billable items are then visible in the Release Billing Proposal app next to regular billable items, and are written off automatically, which increases overall efficiency and frees project managers for more sophisticated tasks.
Figure 3: Billing Control Category app providing an overview over billable as well as non-billable items
SAP S/4HANA Cloud for sourcing and procurement
Central SAP S/4HANA Procurement Hub
One of the main highlights in SAP S/4HANA Cloud for sourcing and procurement is in the 2-Tier ERP area: the Central SAP S/4HANA Procurement Hub. As of the 1802 release, SAP S/4HANA Cloud can be connected to any SAP ERP system; this means that SAP S/4HANA Cloud can now serve as the main system to centralize procurement-related activities. The huge benefit of a centralized system consolidating all purchasing contracts is that employees based in locations spread all over the globe can procure their goods more cost-efficiently than ever, as they can now also access supplier contracts that used to be out of their reach but may be the better fit.
Down Payment Monitor app
SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1802 leverages enhanced functions around activities associated with purchasing analytics. To increase visibility in purchasing spend, we’ve developed a new Down Payment Monitor app. This analytical list page provides a comprehensive overview of all down payments documented for any purchase order in the system. From the graphical overview, employees can filter for any purchase order and directly drill down to line item level, which allows them to plan and optimize cash flows faster, but above all more intelligently and efficiently.
Figure 4: Down Payment Monitor app showing the down payments for all purchase orders in the system
SAP S/4HANA Cloud User Community
Finally, let me draw your attention to our soon to be launched SAP S/4HANA Cloud User Community. This interactive platform will be available to all SAP S/4HANA Cloud customers, partners, and prospects to exchange information about our products, our cloud solutions, and best practices related to them. In fact, the SAP S/4HANA Cloud User Community is a new pillar to our ultimate goal: We want our customers to succeed with our new leading-edge product; the new user community is there to give them access to the content, support, and resources they need to drive success through each stage of their journey.
If we’ve peaked your interest for more, stay tuned for the updates which my colleagues will be providing within the next couple of days.
For more information on SAP S/4HANA Cloud, check out the following links:
- SAP S/4HANA Cloud release info: http://www.sap.com/s4-cloudrelease
- Best practices for SAP S/4HANA Cloud here
- New SAP S/4HANA Cloud User Community (available soon)
- Feature Scope Description here
- What’s New here
- Product Assistance here
- Help Portal Product Page here