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Infosys HANA and S/4HANA Tools: Automating Migration to Drive Value

 

As a follow-up to our research project focused on SAP HANA and S/4HANA services that was completed last fall, NelsonHall recently had a briefing with Infosys to take an in-depth look at components of their migration toolset and understand how it is automating the activities of existing SAP clients migrating to HANA or S/4HANA.

SAP is focused on speed and agility in HANA and S/4HANA as a key benefit of adoption, and in parallel, Infosys is looking at ways to improve the speed of the migration itself. It uses tools to automate as much of the migration process as it can to further augment the business case for migration. Its toolset combines tools from SAP itself with home-built tools, and spans the lifecycle of a migration including discovery, migration preparation, deployment roadmapping, architecting, migrating, and deploying.

These toolsets are deployed regardless of whether the HANA database is being adopted to support an existing ECC suite or the entire application stack is migrating to S/4HANA. While SAP tools address migration and adaptation of standard code, SAP doesn’t offer tools to address custom code and configuration. To address this, Infosys has developed two core tools to accelerate the migration of HANA and S/4HANA conversions:

  • Infosys HANA Code Migration & Optimization (CMO)
  • Infosys S/4 Assist

HANA CMO

Built on a foundation of SAP tools and augmented by proprietary IP, CMO analyzes the impact of migration to HANA database or S/4HANA simplifications on custom code and recommends remediation for any errors identified; it displays a tabular list of all identified errors, and also highlights errors that the tool can remediate automatically and those that require manual remediation. For those identified as candidates for automatic remediation, the tool can correct the code automatically based on a built-in rule engine. CMO has intelligence to scan the code and perform appropriate code changes based on issue type.

As a part of the remediation, CMO adds inline documentation to code, with an audit trail for the code changes performed. Once the code is remediated it can then raise an automatic request (SAP Transport) to schedule the code to be deployed to higher environments. In addition to remediation, CMO also has capability to optimize performance of the custom code to ensure it leverages the full benefits of HANA DB and S/4HANA.

Infosys HANA CMO also has a dashboard capability that provides real-time visibility to stakeholders on the progress of the migration.

CMO can be used to migrate existing SAP environments to either SAP HANA (Suite on HANA) or directly to S/4HANA. It is also applicable for migrations to cloud-based Suite on HANA or S/4HANA environments. The tool is configured at the onset of an engagement to factor in the target environment in its assessment and remediation recommendations.

Infosys has used CMO across ~20 clients to date and says that clients have realized the following:

  • > 80% of custom code compliance errors have been automatically remediated
  • > 50% of custom code optimizations done automatically
  • > 70% reduction in custom code remediation effort
  • > 70% reduction in the duration of code migration effort.

For one large American beverage and snack company, the initial analysis of the impact of migration to HANA showed ~4.5k custom code line items impacted, which would require ~500 man-days of effort to remediate. Using CMO, Infosys was able to complete the custom code remediation in ~72 man-days, with the automated code remediation completed in ~4 days.

S/4 Assist

For clients that are converting directly to S/4HANA, Infosys has developed S/4 Assist to accelerate the assessment and conversion. As the business case for adoption of S/4HANA has been challenging to date, Infosys is seeing clients with little appetite to even undertake an assessment of their existing environment in preparation for conversion. S/4 Assist was developed to accelerate developing a detailed understanding of the current landscape, effort for migration and business case, reducing the typical technical assessment effort from 2-8 weeks to 4-6 days.

To reduce the cost of an assessment further, S/4 Assist is designed to be used for analysis by a team located in an Infosys delivery center rather than being on the client site. The application consists of two components:

  • Infosys extractor program: an agent deployed locally to a client environment, where it is able to extract business process, custom code, security, infrastructure, functional and UI details without extracting sensitive data
  • Infosys S/4HANA Impact Analyzer: a cloud-based system where the extraction is uploaded and analyzed. The output includes a dashboard view of the impacts of a migration, including:
    • Summary: the potential functions of S/4HANA that can be implemented for the client – recommendations tailored to business processes and functionalities which are used by the client
    • Conversion readiness: potential errors and warnings resulting from migration along with their cause and remediation
    • Business process impact: how defined business processes are impacted by the migration, including opportunities to improve processes through adoption of innovations
    • Functional and UI check: the business functions and transactions impacted by the migration, including the impact of using Fiori for UI
    • Technical analysis: custom objects and interfaces impacted and requiring remediation
    • Security analysis: users and roles impacted by migration.
    • Infra analysis: add-ons impacted and sizing report for S/4HANA.

These outputs are provided in a number of formats, including as a dashboard, in a table, or via charts, all supported by detailed Excel spreadsheets. Infosys sees S/4 Assist’s key value drivers, relative to other assessment tools such as SAP Readiness Check, as:

  • The ability to look in more detail at technical and functional impacts of conversion
  • The ability to analyze interfaces and impacts on other systems
  • User impacts (whether relative to security or UI)
  • The opportunity to identify innovations that will further increase value in adopting S/4HANA.

Infosys has used S/4 Assist with ~8 clients to date. Typically, it has seen the overall duration of S/4HANA migration assessments drop from 4-8 weeks to 1-2 weeks.

Summary

While HANA and S/4HANA represent a small proportion of the overall SAP landscape today, it is growing rapidly. NelsonHall estimates that the global market for HANA and S/4HANA services was ~$7.2bn in 2017 but is projected to rise to $14.1bn by 2021, representing a CAAGR of 18%. It is also going to increasingly see existing large enterprise SAP clients migrating to HANA and S/4HANA rather than the greenfield and SMB clients making up a disproportionate segment of the market today.

By developing a suite of assets that provides clients with visibility to the impact of migrating, and also reduces the migration effort, Infosys is positioning itself to support these large enterprise clients as the value of migrating becomes clearer and the end-of-support deadline for legacy SAP environments in 2025 creeps closer.

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