Intelligence Move: Transform SAP SRM using Ariba & S/4HANA
This blog post helps you to transform your SRM system using Ariba and S/4HANA system. Those who attended SAP hosted session “Making the Move from SRM to SAP Ariba” were aware of this topic but that was more of moving the entire SRM functionality to Ariba. In this blog post, I am covering a comparative study between SRM, S/4HANA and Ariba so that you can have a choice to move your sourcing and procurement process to the best fit system.
With the release of Intelligence Enterprise and Rise with SAP, customers will have more options to transform their entire procurement system including SRM Move. However, SAP never says Ariba or S/4HANA is an immediate replacement of SRM. Therefore, it’s recommended to go for assessment before moving from SRM. Also, you should consider a few constraints and limitations before SRM Move:
- Reference to SAP Note# 1648480SAP, SRM goes out of maintenance on 31st Dec 2025 and following this date no further support will be given to the platform including software maintenance and bug-fixing.
- Government and PSU customers with restrictions to move on to the cloud system, should be aware Ariba is a cloud product.
- If you are migrating to S/4HANA and want to keep SRM as it is, still you find different types of challenges, viz:
- The supplier replication with ROS (Registration of Suppliers) is not supported.
- The MM-SUS scenario is not supported with SAP S/4HANA
- This Material Field Length Extension (MFLE) change in SAP S/4HANA requires configuration and customizing changes in SAP SRM system, to be able to integrate seamlessly.
- PPS used as add on with SRM, can be integrated with S/4. However, PPS fields are not yet available in standard Fiori apps.
Looking into the above constraints and challenges, don’t consider SRM move as migration of SRM to Ariba or S/4HANA. Plan for the digital transformation of your entire procurement and sourcing process. Therefore, set up objectives and goals considering the below major points:
- Evaluate S/4HANA and Ariba capabilities
- Create two types of road maps – Technical and Business Re-engineering
- Fit/gap analysis to check, why can’t S/4HANA or Ariba functionality can be adopted instead of an exact match of SRM functionality in the new environment.
- Start with best practices instead of migrating/adopting the SRM functionality
- Harmonize procurement and sourcing process where possible
- Try to achieve growth and profitability by streamlining the process wherever possible.
Once you set up objectives and goals, the next step would be to decide on the approach. Based on my experience, I have chart down the approach which can be used for SRM Move. The success mantra of this transformation lies in the hands of sourcing and procurement business process owners so involve them from the beginning, don’t wait for Prepare/ Explore phase for their involvement.
The next step would be to plan and decide on the topic which helps you in SRM Move and is also key for the digital transformation of sourcing and procurement processes. Since SRM is being used by the business (from decade) so business is aware of in/out of the SRM system hence try to get information on the critical process and pain points. Also, make them aware of the above-mentioned constraints along with the capability of S/4HANA and Ariba. You can use SAP GTM deck to show the capability of Ariba and S/4HANA from the Sourcing and Procurement point of view. I will not go into details of Ariba/ S/4HANA features in this blogpost as this deck is available on partner edge, you can re-use that for your customer.
Since SRM is planned to move out from the eco-system so you need to decouple the Sourcing and Procurement scenarios of SRM and ECC. This task will help you in the mapping of scenarios in Ariba and S/4HANA system.
I have decoupled and sample scenarios that can be used as a reference in SRM Move planning:
The most important step would be, to discuss with the business and stakeholder based on a comparative study of SRM, Ariba and S/4HANA functionality of each sourcing and procurement process. That will provide confidence to process owners and stakeholders for SRM Move.
I depicted the comparative procurement and sourcing functionality in these systems. This is also an objective of writing this blog post.
Below is a comparative study of frequently used functionality by SRM customers:
Shopping Cart /Electronic Requisition & Catalog:
Purchase Order Processing:
Supplier Onboarding & Performance:
Sourcing & RFx functionality:
Supply Chain Collaboration:
Conclusion: This blog post helps you what all points to consider while moving from SRM to Ariba & S/4HANA. These comparative studies help you in planning to move SRM decade-old processes to a digital supported system like Ariba and S/4HANA. Customers who don’t have restrictions to move to the cloud system can plan to move away from SRM. I would say it must be for the customer who planned for S/4HANA migration shortly.
Reference: SAP Ariba community, SAP Roadmap explorer, SAP Best Practices releases.