Highlights of the SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1805 Release
Today marks the general availability of our SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1805 release. As stated with our February release, 2018 will be the year of the “intelligent ERP”. On our journey towards realizing the intelligent enterprise, we will ship many innovations that will help run businesses more intelligently, also in this quarter. The 1805 release includes a number of innovations in the area of machine learning (ML), as well as scenarios leveraging our digital assistant, SAP CoPilot, and brand-new voice-recognition capabilities.
This blog provides you with the latest and greatest 1805 highlights of our next-generation, intelligent cloud ERP solution. Check out my video below for a quick overview of my top three updates.
SAP S/4HANA Cloud for Finance
Intelligent GR/IR account reconciliation with SAP Leonardo
In the area of finance, the 1805 release introduces a new exception handling process, intelligent goods-receipt / invoice-receipt account reconciliation with SAP Leonardo. This machine learning service helps to reduce manual efforts in balancing differences between goods receipts and invoice receipts. By learning from decisions taken in the past, this service automatically generates the best decision proposals, thereby accelerating the financial close.
Figure 1: The goods and invoice receipt reconciliation overview
SAP Multi-Bank Connectivity – SWIFT and SAP join forces
Additionally, we are happy to announce that, as of the 1805 release, we are joining forces with SWIFT. With the new integrated SAP Multi-Bank Connectivity, corporates are directly connected with their financial services institutions. Leveraging this out-of-the-box integration with financial institutions truly enhances control and efficiency of the payment processes. The full automation of this process is a great way to provide cash managers with an end-to-end real-time payment status tracking, allowing for full transparency throughout the process.
SAP S/4HANA Cloud for Manufacturing
Inspection lot analytics
One of the intelligent highlights in the area of manufacturing that is part of the 1805 release is inspection lot analytics. This innovation supports quality engineers when analyzing accepted and rejected, as well as skipped and non-skipped lots. Aggregating inspection lot data fosters insights into meaningful KPIs on plant level, and empowers quality engineers to identify any issues on material level, thereby preventing a shortage of materials.
Figure 2: Inspection Lot Detailed Analytics app showing rejection rates over a certain period
Basic integration with SAP Extended Warehouse Management
Another highlight of the 1805 release is the ability to integrate SAP S/4HANA Cloud with decentralized on-premise instances of SAP Extended Warehouse Management. This scenario for logistics execution processes supports the integration of inbound and outbound processes, stock transfers, production and customer returns – a smart way to extend the scope of SAP S/4HANA Cloud core processes with best-of-breed warehouse management functionality.
SAP S/4HANA Cloud for Professional Services
Manage Cost Rates – Professional Services app
SAP S/4HANA Cloud 1805 also leverages several innovations in the professional services area. The new “Manage Cost Rates – Professional Services” SAP Fiori app simplifies and enhances cost rate maintenance. When using professional services, you can now define cost rates based on who providesthe service, as well as on what is provided. Additionally, this new app includes a new indicator, the so-called “ICO cost rate”, which allows you to maintain intercompany cost rates.
Figure 3: New “Manage Cost Rates – Professional Services” SAP Fiori app simplifying cost rate maintenance
Profit center on billing item level
Moreover, professional services now makes revenue allocation of customer projects more flexible, above all by leveraging profit center on billing item level. As of the 1805 release, the “Plan Customer Projects” app offers the new profit centerattribute. This new feature allows assigning revenue to several profit centers, thereby making project profits more transparent.
SAP S/4HANA Cloud for Enterprise Portfolio and Project Management
Project forecasting based on historical project data
As part of the 1805 release, we also launch a new machine learning scenario in the area of enterprise portfolio and project management, which improves project cost planning and forecasting: project forecasting based on historical project data. After training a machine learning model, this service supports project financial controllers in taking better project investment decisions, thereby reducing the number of budget overruns.
Figure 4: Monitor Projects app providing project financial controllers insights into cost prediction
SAP CoPilot as intelligent project assistant
Another intelligent highlight of the 1805 release is connected to SAP CoPilot, our intelligent project assistant. SAP CoPilot empowers project managers to stay on top of all project-related statuses. The natural language capabilities allow project managers to monitor their projects anytime and anywhere. This SAP CoPilot scenario proves once more that digital assistance can truly accelerate the resolution of identified issues.
SAP S/4HANA Cloud for Sourcing and Procurement
As part of the 1805 release, we also release a new SAP CoPilot highlight in the area of sourcing and procurement: smart buying. When ordering a material, an end user can now benefit from natural language interaction; SAP CoPilot will then list all relevant entries based on the data stored in the system. Moreover, as of now SAP CoPilot can also create purchase requisitions with only minimal input from the end user. This allows for a completely new, streamlined, and intelligent experience of buying materials.
Figure 5: Smart buying: SAP CoPilot creating a purchase requisition after interaction with an end user
Reduce free-text items using machine learning
Another intelligent highlight in sourcing and procurement that is available as of the 1805 release is the ability to reduce free-text items using machine learning. Whenever end users generate several identical free-text items for purchase requisitions, this machine learning service will automatically propose to create a new catalog item for the respective material. Reducing the number of free-text items by means of this service not only enhances reporting on purchasing spend, but also results in better cost control, which tremendously streamlines the whole purchasing process.
Two-Tier ERP in SAP S/4HANA Cloud
Connected to Sourcing and Procurement, as part of our 1805 release, we enable central purchasing – another step on our journey to transform enterprises. Central Purchasing provides centralized access and visibility to processes across industries with a deep integration into the system landscape. It is connected to the customer’s ERP systems and exchanges purchasing documents in the connected systems.
If we’ve peaked your interest for more, stay tuned for the updates that 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
- My blog post on SAP News: here
- Best practices for SAP S/4HANA Cloud here
- New SAP S/4HANA Cloud User Community: register here
- Feature Scope Description here
- What’s New here
- What’s New Viewer here
- Help Portal Product Page here