How to adopt a new functionality delivered via SAP S/4HANA Cloud Updates
Since recently SAP S/4HANA Cloud customers receive their innovations not only via the known releases but also as part of frequent updates (see our first blog post in this series to understand the basic idea of continuous delivery for SAP S/4HANA Cloud). Overall aim of the newly established updates is to deliver functionalities continuously, without disrupting the day-to-day business of SAP S/4HANA Cloud end-users. But: how does this work? What needs to be done to actively adopt a feature delivered via update?
Customer Adoption Journey for SAP S/4HANA Cloud
The implementation process for a new functionality in general is guided by three key questions:
Step 1: Which upcoming innovations are important for my organization?
Step 2: How do I implement relevant features?
Step 3: After gaining first experiences with new features – how can I give feedback?
SAP S/4HANA Cloud customers are supported by various tools in this regard – each focusing on different steps of the journey:
Step 1: Understand SAP S/4HANA CLOUD innovations and which new features are relevant for you!
Similar to releases also with updates the first step in our adoption journey is to gain an overview of upcoming innovations. This brings SAP Road Map Explorer into play. It now not only gives us the latest insights into the scope of upcoming releases, but also provides information about the content of regular updates. As known, the platform provides a quarterly overview of the future portfolio in SAP S/4HANA Cloud – independent whether the innovations are delivered via releases or updates.
To each roadmap item – called Innovation – a detailed description is available on the tab “Feature”. When the innovation is delivered, these details include a link towards the corresponding What’s New documents. What’s New documents contain details about the feature and the related implementation steps.
An alternative access point for a more detailed scope analysis of a delivered release or update based on an individual tenant configuration is our SAP S/4HANA Cloud Release Assessment and Scope Dependency Tool (RASD). For example, RASD enables customers and partners to analyse:
- … which features included in an update/release relate to scope items that are activated in a specific tenant.
- … which new functionality touches the most-used SAP Fiori apps in your tenant.
- … which features require an activation through a toggle
This analysis sets the stage to plan associated change management activities.
For detailed information about RASD and how to get access, please view our related blog post.
In case you only require a listed overview of upcoming features delivered via update or release, What’s New Viewer is a good recommendation as well. It offers an overview, short descriptions of the functionality and the possibility to filter for example by solution area or scope item. In addition, you can filter for features that require an activation (e.g. because they are hidden behind a toggle). What’s New documents are released in two steps: Preliminary What’s New documents are released about four weeks prior to a release and about two weeks prior to an update. The final What’s New documents are published together with the delivery of a release/update.
For features, that require activation, the related What’s New document includes a reference to the feature name. With this name, you are able to identify the feature/toggle in the SAP Fiori app “Activate New Features” (see Step 2).
Step 2: Implement a new feature
SAP Road Map Explorer, RASD, and What`s New Viewer support you in understanding innovations and individual features of new releases and updates. Now it’s time to learn about the steps to implement features delivered via updates.
As described above, we need to differentiate between features that are delivered behind toggles (or other configuration steps that are required before a feature is visible) and those without toggles. The latter are very small features without day-1 impact. For these features, no additional actions are required. They are available immediately after the delivery of the update.
So, let’s focus on toggled features. First implementation step is to activate the related toggle in your quality system via the SAP Fiori app Activate New Features (SAP Fiori Apps Library: App ID F3006).
The specific feature you want to activate is described in the “What`s New” document (see above) – as well as all other configuration steps required to implement this functionality.
After testing in your Q-system, you switch-on the feature in production via the “Activate New Features” app. Last step is to transport the configuration into your P-system. In the future, we plan to simplify this process by combining the activation and the configuration in one transport.
Step 3: Give feedback
Updates in higher frequency via continuous delivery offer the possibility for SAP to respond more quickly to improvement requests. SAP’s Customer Influence site gives customers the chance to raise these requests directly and share ideas for new innovations.
The SAP Continuous Influence page on SAP Community describes all details how to submit improvement requests, follow specific areas, and vote for improvement requests that are relevant for you. In the future, many improvement requests will be solved earlier due to continuous delivery for SAP S/4HANA Cloud.
Further details on how to adopt functionality delivered via updates
- Continuous delivery @ “In-Depth for S/4HANA Series” – In the October 2021 edition of the “In-Depth with SAP S/4HANA Series” – session #1 is about continuous delivery for SAP S/4HANA Cloud and includes a demo of the feature adoption journey described in this blog (access to learning hub required).
- Continuous delivery page @ SAP Activate
This blog is the 2nd in our continuous delivery blog series (this is the first one). I am looking forward to your questions and ideas. Please add the user tag “continuous delivery for SAP S/4HANA Cloud” in your question.
And – last not least, we created a brand new landing page on continuous delivery for SAP S/4HANA Cloud under the topic page of SAP S/4HANA Cloud. You will find all our future blogs and updates on this page.