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SAP S4HANA OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

SAP S4HANA is #1 ranked solution in top ERP tools. PeerSpot users give SAP S4HANA an average rating of 8 out of 10. SAP S4HANA is most commonly compared to SAP Business One: SAP S4HANA vs SAP Business One. SAP S4HANA is popular among the large enterprise segment, accounting for 64% of users researching this solution on PeerSpot. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a computer software company, accounting for 29% of all views.
SAP S4HANA Buyer's Guide

Download the SAP S4HANA Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: June 2022

What is SAP S4HANA?

SAP S4HANA is an ERP (enterprise resource planning) system that uses sophisticated technologies including machine learning and AI. It is most commonly used to integrate and manage business functions and is an ideal solution for large enterprises. The platform includes supplier relationship management (SRM), customer relationship management (CRM), supply chain management (SCM), and product lifecycle management (PLM) functionality.

SAP S4HANA offers three different deployment options:

  • On-premises
  • Cloud
  • Hybrid

SAP S4HANA Features

SAP S4HANA has many valuable key features, including:

  • Customizable
  • ERP, CRM, SRM, SCM, PLM co-deployed
  • High throughput
  • Fast analytics and reporting
  • Smaller total data footprint
  • SAP HANA multi-tenancy
  • All data: social, text, geo, graph, processing
  • New SAP Fiori UX for any device (mobile, desktop, tablet)
  • Unlimited workload capacity
  • High-volume transaction processing (OLTP)
  • High volume real-time analytical processes (OLAP)
  • Service Management
  • Digital Boardroom Integration

SAP S4HANA Benefits

Some of the benefits of using SAP S4HANA include:

  • Speed: S4 HANA applications leverage speed, context, and data accessibility to ensure you can stay up to date with rapidly evolving technology.
  • Improved performance: With SAP S4HANA, you can plan, execute, or generate reports and analytics based on live data to increase performance.
  • Simplicity: SAP S4HANA’s whole infrastructure was designed with simplification in mind — from the management of the solution to the administration of the IT landscape. The solution serves as the digital core for business process simplification and enables the centralizing of hardware and network resources.
  • Cost effective: SAP S4HANA is a cost effective solution. It provides the ability to bring together all the analytical and transactional capabilities of a variety of systems in one location, enabling better decision making.

Reviews from Real Users

Below are some reviews and helpful feedback written by SAP S4HANA users.

A Mechanical Engineer at a construction company says, “It is a very powerful, highly customizable tool. The most valuable feature is that the reporting is fast. We can see the results from that in that our commissions come in fast. That is the main advantage.”

Another reviewer, a SAP Technology Manager at a financial services firm, mentions, "It is more or less a very, very smooth and seamless product. Day by day they are increasing their technology features and they are keen to resolve the issues. India has a complex business scenario and SAP is thinking about that and resolving the issues day by day. In terms of the features I have found most valuable, I don't think that there is any lack or any gap process-wise. SAP is a very good tool."

A Project and Service delivery Manager at a tech services company comments, "One of the most valuable features, which we used the most, was the FI module, for finance. It involved controlling, account receivables, account payables, and complete financial steering."

A Senior Architect at a construction company states, “The POD applications are very useful to us. There are a few POD apps which we are using for different business scenarios. They are quite interesting.” He also adds, “The initial setup is pretty straightforward. The documentation is very good. The solution can scale well. The solution is stable.”

SAP S4HANA was previously known as SAP S/4HANA.

SAP S4HANA Customers

Nestle, O.C. Tanner, Sabre, New York Life Insurance Co., MEMEBOX, Siemens AG.

SAP S4HANA Video

SAP S4HANA Pricing Advice

What users are saying about SAP S4HANA pricing:
  • "It is an expensive solution."
  • "This is not the cheapest solution on the market, so you need to invest seriously in it. As a solid product, it has a solid price. It's definitely one of the more expensive tools on the market, but it's also one of the best products on the market."
  • "Pricing is one area where S/4HANA has room for improvement. It's too costly for many people. They have come up with"
  • SAP S4HANA Reviews

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    Mechanical Engineer at a construction company with 1,001-5,000 employees
    Real User
    Top 20
    Complicated and robust, this suite delivers a total solution with rigorous and exhaustive planning
    Pros and Cons
    • "It is a very powerful, highly customizable tool."
    • "It requires a lot of planning to implement the product correctly."

    What is our primary use case?

    Our company analyzes material inventory and then processes the financial accounting which is handled by the system we created using the product.  

    What is most valuable?

    The most valuable feature is that the reporting is fast. We can see the results from that in that our commissions come in fast. That is the main advantage.  

    What needs improvement?

    This is an integrated system so it is very complex. It is not like Windows or like Microsoft products where you can use Word or you use Excel and it is familiar and easy to use. The interface is something that is very confusing from my point of view. It can and should be simplified. It needs some work on the front end to be more user-friendly and customizable to the user's needs.  It is not a very good product from the perspective of ease-of-use. Trying to implement it is like you want to prepare some food. You have raw materials like spices in a pile but there is no recipe as to how to mix them. It is a recipe missing the proportion to mix the spices in.   In the case of S/4HANA, that recipe depends on how the organization requires it to operate. A better result depends upon the implementation partner's decisions in handling the wide range of choices offered by the product. If these decisions are not good, once the product is already developed, you may come to know after years of using it that it was not implemented optimally. Then you end up making customizations and work-arounds because of this initial implementation. That is bad practice. Customization and work-arounds will only lead to more complexity. It is a very big product that can not be understood in a short span of time and implemented quickly. Meticulous planning is ultimately important.  A lot depends on the implementation partner and if they understand your needs. An implementation partner who rushes in too quickly with a solution can get it wrong and that can cause major problems in the long run.  

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We started the implementation of S/4HANA in 2017.  
    Buyer's Guide
    SAP S4HANA
    June 2022
    Learn what your peers think about SAP S4HANA. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: June 2022.
    610,812 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Any glitches and problems would all depend very strongly on the implementation, predominately. Our integration is very near perfect, but it needs a highly skilled team taking lots of time to understand and maintain it properly. Because implementation is less customized it is better than in most other industries. When it comes to our own industry and our own investment in our industry with our own company stressors, it has to be customized properly.  One person will not be able to understand and manage all the processes of the modules. That is not practically possible to have that type of skill set. The product needs to be managed by a well-integrated team that can work together and separately with their own responsibility for maintenance and execution.  Ultimately one person will need to have an in-depth knowledge of how the parts work together to orchestrate the result. All this has to come together at the time of designing. All of the team will be working with some lack of knowledge about the whole of the system or the in-depth knowledge of some other team member's roles. The integration of the team is as important as the integration of the product. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The scalability of S/4HANA is as good as it can be. The reason that we moved from our old ERP was a lack of scalability. That is exactly the reason. We moved to S/4HANA because we knew the scalability was good.   We use it company-wide on a daily basis and across multiple websites now. If we need to it is possible to scale up from there in whatever way we need to.  

    How are customer service and support?

    Our specialized support team does sometimes work with SAP support. The support is good but it may depend on what you can provide. Sometimes we can trace volumes ourselves and we can get the solutions from that. It can often minimize the time it takes to get a solution. Using SAP to provide the solution takes more time. But sometimes we need them to keep moving ahead.  

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We were having trouble with our other ERP solution which is a product that has not been very successful outside of Arab countries. That learning experience is why we are in a good position to implement S/4HANA as a better solution.  

    How was the initial setup?

    The installation setup requires specific knowledge of the system and how it works. I am not from the technical side myself but I know a lot of configuration is required. It is more-or-less complex depending on the scope of how the product will be modeled for use.  

    What about the implementation team?

    For the installation, we appointed a separate SAP IT partner. Along with that, our entire company was involved with implementing this project.  It definitely requires maintenance from SAP support as well as our own specialized teams.  

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    This is an expensive product.  

    What other advice do I have?

    My recommendation to people considering S/4HANA as an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) is to invest in it if they can afford it and need it. But, I strongly recommend that the implementation should be considered very carefully. SAP software is a very capable solution but it is only worth it if you approach it knowing that you will be spending three, four, or five years just to be able to understand it fully. It is not just an investment in capital, it is an investment in learning and time.  It is definitely a good product. It is costly and needs a quality team for maintaining and integrating the product.   On a scale from one to ten where one is the worst and ten is the best, I would have a hard time making a rating of SAP S/4HANA that is useful for every user. If someone already has some expertise in ERP expertise, it is different than if they have none. The solution itself can be a ten for one aspect of its function and it can be a three or four in other aspects depending on what the user needs and understands. Cost-wise it can be anything from one to ten depending on the value it provides to the organization investing in it.  Personally, from the functionality point, I think it is one of the best products. The integration is good and the SAP team helps with their continuous support to help users reap the fruit of their investment in the software system. We took the time to have the knowledge of business and how the product could work for us to make adopting this product a success. In our case, I think the solution is around a seven-and-a-half out of ten.  

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    SAP Technology Manager at a financial services firm with 5,001-10,000 employees
    Real User
    Smooth and seamless product with flexible licensing models
    Pros and Cons
    • "It is more or less a very, very smooth and seamless product. Day by day they are increasing their technology features and they are keen to resolve the issues. India has a complex business scenario and SAP is thinking about that and resolving the issues day by day."
    • "If I can highlight one point that could be improved, when we talk about other ERPs, like Oracle, nowadays these ERPs provide free integration with other ERPs. For example, there is an API for banks integrated into every tool and every product form requires that bank integration in order to give real time data into the ERP. But SAP is charging a lot for that particular bank integration scenario and I think it should be free because other ERPs are providing this feature built in to the ERP. People always ask us about the integration and how much it will cost to go with that solution, so people are thinking about this."

    What is our primary use case?

    We are implementing SAP S/4HANA for our customers.

    We are dealing with firms who are into manufacturing, retail, and pharmaceutical.

    Nowadays, people are choosing the cloud solution only, and are probably going with AWS or Azure. It varies from case to case.

    What is most valuable?

    In terms of the features I have found most valuable, I don't think that there is any lack or any gap process-wise. SAP is a very good tool.

    What needs improvement?

    If I can highlight one point that could be improved, when we talk about other ERPs, like Oracle, nowadays these ERPs provide free integration with other ERPs. For example, there is an API for banks integrated into every tool and every product form requires that bank integration in order to give real time data into the ERP. But SAP is charging a lot for that particular bank integration scenario and I think it should be free because other ERPs are providing this feature built in to the ERP. People always ask us about the integration and how much it will cost to go with that solution, so people are thinking about this.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been working with SAP S/4HANA for more than four years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    SAP S/4HANA is stable. It is more or less a very, very smooth and seamless product. Day by day they are increasing their technology features and they are keen to resolve the issues. India has a complex business scenario and SAP is thinking about that and resolving the issues day by day.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    SAP S/4HANA is scalable, but it is scalable for those who have money. In terms of  boutique firms, nowadays they are also thinking about how to move themselves into big ERPs. But because of the cost, most of the boutique firms are choosing Microsoft Dynamics. Because of the price, SAP is not likely the highest product to be chosen, and I think SAP should think about that because if they want to benefit their customers or to increase the size of their customer base, they have to think about pricing as well.

    If somebody is asking for the two module support, it is only going to require up to two main servers, but if they are saying that we are providing you proper support and proper IT for the project then it is going to be up to four people. In India or in any country, people are pressing to do the freelance thing. The answer to this question depends on the scalability.

    How are customer service and support?

    Customer support is good. It's very nice. There are no more issues with that. When I post SAP tickets that I mark as high priority they always ask why is it high? It should be high, medium or low. From their perspective, these tickets should be  medium or low because high priority should be replied within 24 hours. If I raise any complaint in SAP as a very high priority it should be resolved within 24 hours.

    They always come up with this complaint. I faced this issue in my last project. If it is a critical thing from my business side then I need to put that remark as a very high priority. I don't know why they always question that high priority. We always want to deliver the things on a timeline. That's why we put that kind of a remark when we raise any ticket to SAP.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup is straightforward. I am using SAP for more than six years, meaning SAP ERP, not SAP S/4HANA. So it is straightforward for me. But for those who are boutique and are now going from a small ERP to a bigger ERP like SAP or another one, for them the initial setup is complex.

    The implementation will take six months. It covers every process and integration for the standard part. The time depends upon if they want to integrate more tools and more processes, then it could be up to nine months. If they want a vanilla system to be implemented it is going take six months, a standard which every ERP takes if I compare with Oracle. I am not talking about any other ERP, like a homegrown ERP.

    There are three phases if somebody is going to implement the SAP. There is a pre-implementation part, there is the ongoing implementation, and then there is the post implementation part where we include the support, as well. We are also doing the quality review, but it is the same as if I'm doing the implementation and we want a particular person for a particular module. Let's take the example if somebody is implementing four or five modules in SAP - for every module we require a senior guy and a junior guy so that he or she can deliver the things on a timely basis. Because it requires teamwork, the integration of every module requires up to around 10 people for any implementation, including the project manager.

    I am talking only about the implementation part. Project support or the pre-implementation part is a different thing.

    What about the implementation team?

    In our company we have our own team for SAP implementation because we are a partner with SAP. We do hire outside people, but not from SAP. We are hiring the manpower from a third-party. If the project size is very large and we need to cover things in a short period, we prefer to hire other resources so that we can finish according to the timeline which is important for every product platform. That's why if we do the things according to the timeline they give us good feedback and the word of mouth comes into the picture and they share it with other people who then reach out to us.

    What was our ROI?

    Regarding ROI, in India there are more startup firms and ROI is only an issue for people going for SAP to get funding because it's a very good tool and more business tycoons are looking for those companies who are using SAP. So in my experience, if somebody is using SAP there are more chances for ROI.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    SAP licenses are more costly than others. But now SAP provides flexible models for licenses for users who are in a higher position or only have to give approval or check things.

    What other advice do I have?

    On a scale of one to ten, for me SAP S/4HANA is an eight.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    Flag as inappropriate
    Buyer's Guide
    SAP S4HANA
    June 2022
    Learn what your peers think about SAP S4HANA. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: June 2022.
    610,812 professionals have used our research since 2012.
    Project and Service delivery Manager at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
    Real User
    Top 5Leaderboard
    It's stable and has all the modules and functionalities you may need
    Pros and Cons
    • "One of the most valuable features, which we used the most, was the FI module, for finance. It involved controlling, account receivables, account payables, and complete financial steering."
    • "S/4HANA could be improved with better integration. At the moment, a main issue I see is that there's so much growth in the functionality, complementary modules, and cloud solutions which were acquired by SAP and which extend the functionality of the SAP ERP suite. It looks to me that they tend to acquire more and more functionality from acquisitions, but they don't invest enough effort into making them integrated with S/4HANA or ERP. I would say that the functionality is great, but integration is something which still needs more attention. Instead of focusing on acquisitions, they should invest, integrate, and better the existing portfolio of products in SAP. It would help us, as implementors, to have a more complex or compact solution."

    What is our primary use case?

    I used S/4HANA as a classical ERP system, so I used it to manage the data feeds of enterprise companies. One of them was an IT services company and the other was in the pharmaceutical business. They were two different businesses, but S/4HANA has so many modules and adjustments that you can generally adjust it to any kind of a business. 

    S/4HANA can be cloud-based or deployed on-premises, but in both of my implementations, it was on-prem. 

    What is most valuable?

    One of the most valuable features, which we used the most, was the FI module, for finance. It involved controlling, account receivables, account payables, and complete financial steering. 

    What needs improvement?

    S/4HANA could be improved with better integration. At the moment, a main issue I see is that there's so much growth in the functionality, complementary modules, and cloud solutions which were acquired by SAP and which extend the functionality of the SAP ERP suite. It looks to me that they tend to acquire more and more functionality from acquisitions, but they don't invest enough effort into making them integrated with S/4HANA or ERP. I would say that the functionality is great, but integration is something which still needs more attention. Instead of focusing on acquisitions, they should invest, integrate, and better the existing portfolio of products in SAP. It would help us, as implementors, to have a more complex or compact solution. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I used S/4HANA for about half a year, for two projects that I was running. 

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    I would say that S/4HANA is more of a stable product than a top-performing product, but that's because I don't have the same use cases with similar tools to compare it to. It's not fair to judge the performance if I don't have a like-to-like comparison with anything else. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    This solution is scalable. 

    How are customer service and support?

    The technical support of SAP really depends on where your ticket is resolved. Sometimes you are lucky and you get an expert on the first trial, directly from Europe, and you get good advice very quickly and can continue with your progress. However, sometimes your tickets get stuck and maybe sent to India or sent to less experienced consultants, and you need to chase it to get your ticket resolved. It's hard to make a judgment on this because I've experienced both circumstances, either getting great support in a short amount of time or having to escalate the ticket for a couple of weeks because it's hard to reach the right expert. It's hard to compare because it depends, case by case. 

    I'd say their technical support falls in the middle of the scale: it could be better, but it could be worse. At the moment, it's satisfactory, but unfortunately, this isn't always the case. 

    How was the initial setup?

    Implementation is definitely not straightforward. It's straightforward if you have a proper expert in your sub-base team, but it's not installing Windows or Microsoft Excel. It's a corporate enterprise management system, so there are a lot of parameters you need to set up. The installation itself is the easy part, but the configuration for the business use case is complex. Typically, the installation took about one week. For the configuration, making it compliant with the business use cases, and setting up all the security and users, it took months—typically three to six months, depending on the size of the company. 

    The team needed for deployment and maintenance depends on the size and complexity of the customer's business processes. It also depends on how far they would like to go with customizations because almost nobody is purchasing such an enterprise solution to use it as a standard. Almost every customer has some specific features they need to get configured, adjusted, or developed in the solution. From that point of view, it will decide the size of your team. 

    If you have a small- to mid-size company—one hundred employees, compact business processes—then you can do it in a couple of months with five people. If you have an enterprise company with thousands of employees around the globe, then it takes almost an indefinite number of consultants because it depends on the complexity of your setup. So the minimum team of five could set it up in a couple of months for a small- to mid-sized company, but it could be a team of twenty to fifty people if you have a complex environment. 

    What about the implementation team?

    I have implemented this solution for two customers. 

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    This is not the cheapest solution on the market, so you need to invest seriously in it. As a solid product, it has a solid price. It's definitely one of the more expensive tools on the market, but it's also one of the best products on the market. 

    You need to pay for licensing. There are multiple models, but typically, it's a yearly subscription. Usually, when you implement it from scratch, you don't just purchase it for the first year, but for three or five years. 

    What other advice do I have?

    Compared to similar products, I rate SAP S/4HANA an eight out of ten, because it can always be better. 

    I would definitely recommend S/4HANA to those considering implementation. The greatest and biggest enterprises use SAP solutions. If you have a really serious business and you're looking for a rock solid solution with all the modules and functionalities you may need, then SAP is definitely one of the best options. On the other hand, you need to have a business which is profitable because this solution is not cheap, and implementation projects are neither cheap nor fast. You need to invest seriously in such a solution, but it pays off because there are no risks of malfunctions. You have enough contractors on the market who can help you with the solution, so you can always get support. 

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Implementer
    Flag as inappropriate
    Shylaraj AK - PeerSpot reviewer
    Senior Architect at a construction company with 10,001+ employees
    Real User
    Top 5Leaderboard
    Stable with a straightforward setup and good documentation
    Pros and Cons
    • "The solution can scale well."
    • "We would like to see more DevOps capabilities in the future."

    What is most valuable?

    The POD applications are very useful to us. There are a few POD apps which we are using for the different business scenarios. They are quite interesting.

    The initial setup is pretty straightforward. The documentation is very good.

    The solution can scale well.

    The solution is stable.

    What needs improvement?

    It's been just one year that we started using this product, due to the fact that we need to have different integrations as well to other systems. With S/4HANA, when SAP started, everything worked in a single SAP system. Slowly then it's been delegated or divided into multiple SAP systems. That's why we have around 25 different SAP products running in our landscape. Yet, at the same time, S/4HANA is the core. It's the core component.

    Going forward, I believe more systems could be consolidated into S/4HANA. We need to reduce the number of SAP systems running in our landscape. S/4HANA has the capacity to host many other SAP products, therefore we can discontinue some of the SAP products. Currently, we have now the Global Services, the Governance, Risk, and Compliance, and Enterprise Portal, BW, Supply Chain Management, Warehouse Management, et cetera. If SAP could consolidate many of the systems so that we can reduce the number of systems, that would be ideal.

    The solution can be a bit expensive.

    We would like to see more DevOps capabilities in the future.

    The solution would benefit from offering more serverless features in the sense that when you deploy SAP, it's a pretty big deployment and you have a lot of dependencies or you are closely tied up or you have a dependency with the hardware vendor and the hardware providers and the certified hardware and items like that. At the same time, all these deployed components and these files are possible to deploy without a server as well. Slowly SAP is providing some of the features so that you can deploy this in containers and so you don't have any dependency on the running hardware. That way, you can restart the systems without any downtime or the end-users will not feel the difference. Aspects like that need to be improved. 

    We do have here monthly maintenance due to the fact that sometimes we need to recharge the system and we have seen from the end-users there will be certain downtime as well. If there is no dependency with the hardware and if it goes serverless, then we can have zero-downtime maintenance.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We've been using the solution for the past year or so. It hasn't been that long.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The solution is very stable. There are no bugs or glitches. It doesn't crash or freeze. It's very reliable. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The solution is scalable. At the same time, it depends on where you deploy your systems. If you deploy your systems in Azure, then it would be using the scalability of Azure. If you deploy in AWS, it uses the scalability of AWS. If you deploy in a virtual private environment, then it depends on where you deployed the system. At the same time, it depends on being compatible with all these different hyper-scalers. For the most part, it goes pretty well with the different platforms.

    We are deploying the solution in different countries. Currently, we have close to 10,000 users working in SAP. Yearly, we do the deployment in multiple countries. In two months, we deploy in one more country. There will be another 200, 300 more users will be coming. By the end of this year, there will be 2,000 more users. Currently, around 10,000 users are using this application.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    The SAP S/4HANA technical support is mainly with the service provider. When you deploy SAP, you have different support teams. Most of the time, you will have a service provider or a supplier that you would be associating with. You will have a kind of application management or infrastructure management support with that vendor. For example, IBM, Capgemini, Accenture, DXC. They are the different vendors. However, then you get the OEM support via the SAP Support Portal for product-related issues. That support has got different priority levels based on the importance. Generally, we know how the SAP support works and it's acceptable. We're satisfied with the level of support provided overall.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup isn't too difficult. It's pretty straightforward for the most part. SAP has got some good documentation and there are different migration scenarios and implementation scenarios you can work with. With the help of documentation, things are pretty straightforward. 

    What about the implementation team?

    Most of the time, you do the SAP deployment or the migration with a partner. SAP has got certified partners to help with the implementation.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    SAP has got different license mechanisms. It depends on how many SAP products you run and then how do you negotiate with the SAP teams and what kind of offer you get. At the same time, generally, everyone says SAP products are a bit costly. 

    Some of the SAP systems are licensed based on the number of CPUs that are being deployed, and some of the SAP products are licensed based on the number of primary users, and some of the SAP systems are based on the database footprint. Different SAP products have different license mechanisms, so there should be a person who is knowledgeable about SAP that can understand and then review the licensing agreement and get the right SAP product - and perhaps help negotiate the price.

    What other advice do I have?

    We are customers and end-users.

    We have around 25 different SAP products. We are using SAP S/4HANA in our company.

    The production and the test systems are deployed in the virtual private cloud on-premise, and we have sandbox development and quality systems are deployed in the Azure public cloud.

    I'd rate the solution at an eight out of ten.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud

    If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

    Microsoft Azure
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    Carlos Guzman - PeerSpot reviewer
    CEO at CJG Consulting
    Real User
    Scalable and stable with good cost optimization shipped on cloud solutions
    Pros and Cons
    • "The scalability is excellent, especially on cloud deployment models."
    • "Technical support has been declining. They aren't as responsive as they used to be."

    What is our primary use case?

    With our customers, we are currently administering their solution over SAP HANA and with different infrastructures such as cloud computing, AWS, Azure, GCP, and others that are also on-premise.

    We have customers with new implementations and we offer this product to them. We handle the technical installation, then the high availability solution, the disaster recovery, et cetera. We are doing the administration of all the landscapes and a sub-basic administration. 

    In all the other cases we have, the customers are immigrating their solution from SAP HEC. That is the other server for SAP. We bring it to the cloud with public clouds like AWS. Those cases are the most common.

    What is most valuable?

    The cost optimization that is shipped with cloud solutions is the primary benefit of the product. 

    The integral services that we can administer to our customers are excellent. They are paying for an all-inclusive version of the service. We manage all the features of the operating system - such as ACE's, SAP systems, networks, security on the cloud, et cetera. We can administer everything that is associated with the landscape.

    We're well trained on the solution and therefore find the implementation process straightforward.

    The solution is quite stable and offers good patches for when issues arise.

    The scalability is excellent, especially on cloud deployment models.

    What needs improvement?

    From our point of view, we are just a technology consultant. We look at the interfaces in terms of the functional modules we have. It's hard to really see what would be missing in terms of a feature. 

    For clients, the most painful part of the solution is the implementation guides of the business or process applications. Okay. The business scenario, the graphic user interface, shown on the system can be a challenge. 

    Maybe the commercial model for some other products developed for HANA could be adjusted to make it less complex and more affordable. The commercial laws that SAP has it's very complex. The customer has to acquire a very high license on the product and then they have to buy infrastructure on top of that.

    Technical support has been declining. They aren't as responsive as they used to be.

    The product could use some other integrations with leaders of the products with public clouds - especially if they are doing with another staff like ILP or on other applications. There could be more legal applications that could be integrated more easily with SAP than they're doing. Right now, we have to develop all the integrations. It would be so much better if this was already done. 

    SAP often launches new solutions without first providing the proper documentation. We end up figuring it out, however, it would be nice to have that documentation up front.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We have approximately 15 years of experience on the books with this solution. We've used it since SAP was not HANA. It's now been with HANA, since 2014, if I recall correctly. Therefore, that may be about seven years of experience. Obviously, we've worked with the product over the last 12 months.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The stability is very good. It's, it's a very, very stable version. SAP is often releasing new patches. If we are having some issues, such as some problems with transactions or maybe some features may not work properly, we reach out to enterprise support and often just get a patch. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The level of scalability you can achieve depends on the infrastructure that you have installed. In the cloud, in product public sites, it's easier to scale. We can scale both up and out and it's very simple to accomplish. 

    Typically, we deal with medium businesses. Some others are large at approximately 5,000 users. Most are between 400 and 800 users.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    Technical support used to be better. They seem to be less proactive than they were before. Previously they were very responsive and helpful. It's lagged a bit. We're disappointed their rapid response has declined. We're no longer satisfied with the level of service provided.

    How was the initial setup?

    For us, the entire process is traditionally straightforward. It's not too complex. We manage it like the other systems in the past and obviously take into consideration any new technology within SAP HANA. However, in terms of setting it up, it's not a problem.

    With a big cloud infrastructure, we can set up a system in less than a month. It may take between two to three months to take over the system and put it onto the cloud or on our hardware projects. On-premise it may be longer - sometimes around four months.

    How many people you need for deployment and maintenance depends on the number of systems. However, with a team of four to five people we managed to do all the projects. 

    What about the implementation team?

    We handle the implementation process for our clients.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    While our clients may first evaluate other solutions, that's not something that we typically do.

    What other advice do I have?

    We are experts in the technical implementation of the product.

    We work with a variety of versions, and, of course, with eh latest 2020 updates. We deal with both cloud and on-premises deployment models.

    I'd advise potential new users to really think about their infrastructure and the features they would like. Everything should be looked at and discussed in advance, from security concerns to functional modules. The more you understand what you need, the more likely you will get a solution that you want - and that does what you need it to.

    Overall, I would rate the solution at an eight out of ten.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Implementer
    VARUN-JAIN - PeerSpot reviewer
    Associate Manager - Strategy and Transaction at a consultancy with 10,001+ employees
    Real User
    The solution is highly scalable, with solid performance and integration
    Pros and Cons
    • "S/4HANA is so much faster today than it was before. High performance is one of the best features, but the backbone of S/4HANA is its integration capabilities. They've also shifted to a focus on user experience."
    • "SAP support provides resolves all our problems, but the response time is slower than our customers expect. Maybe it's because they have such a large customer base and are always occupied, but that's one area all our customers mention."

    What is our primary use case?

    There are a lot of options for deploying S/4HANA. It depends on the industry and the customer's budget. It is usually deployed on-premise in the public sector, but tech companies mostly choose the cloud option.

    SAP provides you with single-tenant and multi-tenant options when you opt for the public cloud. When it is a single tenant, it's typically a private cloud managed by SAP, but the customer's budget also factors in. If they're working with a large budget, a customer might opt for a public cloud, but government clients might opt for a completely on-premise solution because of data security regulations. 

    Most of our customers plan to move to S/4HANA. We usually start with central finance and later prepare a migration plan. By the time we're ready to deploy, SAP may have released a new version, so the customer might choose the latest edition depending on their budget go for the latest version, or they may only be interested in whatever version was on the market when we were in the planning stage.

    What is most valuable?

    S/4HANA is so much faster today than it was before. High performance is one of the best features, but the backbone of S/4HANA is its integration capabilities. They've also shifted to a focus on user experience. 

    The UIs used to be slightly boring, but the user experience has dramatically improved since the acquisition of Sybase, Callidus, and several other companies. SAP stays ahead of the curve and is constantly improving. If you want a feature, they're already working on it. It's one of the best ERP solutions on the market.

    What needs improvement?

    The ERP market is competitive, and other solutions may have advantages over S/4HANA in some industries. I work in fintech, and central finance is essential to all industries. S/4HANA provides all the features there, but when you talk about ranking the industries, manufacturing would be No. 1.

    Initially, S/4HANA was getting bested by PeopleSoft in the HR sector. Now, they are catching up. In particular, SAP wasn't strong in expense management, but they acquired a company last year and Ariba several years back. Their SRM was not hit. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We've been using S/4HANA for the last two and a half years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    S/4HANA is stable. Many companies were skeptical because it was costly and untested. It has proven far more stable than people had expected. People thought they would only switch to SAP in 2025 once the solution had matured and provided services, ECC, etc. However, customers are now willing to spend on S/4HANA because they see it's stable and stacks up well against other ERP solutions.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    S/4HANA is highly scalable because of the cloud, and it integrates with various publicly available software, it is highly scalable. S/4HANA has always been scalable, and now you have more ways to scale up with the subscription model as well as the multi-tenant and the single-tenant deployment options. Scalability is never a question.

    How are customer service and support?

    SAP support provides resolves all our problems, but the response time is slower than our customers expect. Maybe it's because they have such a large customer base and are always occupied, but that's one area all our customers mention.

    How was the initial setup?

    S/4HANA implementation is always complex because you need to configure it to work with your infrastructure. SAP only provides the license, not hardware, but they will connect you with a partner like HPE or IBM.

    It's extremely costly if you ask for SAP to implement it, but you can deploy through some vendor like HCL, TC, Infosys, or Capgemini, and then you need to enlist a hardware partner. 

    The complexity also varies by industry. If it's a small industry with $40 million of revenue annually, the business processes will be simple. However, deployment is tricky for heavy manufacturing, energy, etc.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    Pricing is one area where S/4HANA has room for improvement. It's too costly for many people. They have come up with the subscription-based model also. The annual cost is $3,000 per user.

    The only other expense is maintenance, but if you're paying for a subscription, you don't need to pay anything. However, there is a minimum commitment of $100,000.

    Maintenance is always calculated as a percentage of your annual spending. For example, if you have implemented the solution, and it costs you $10 million in your first year, roughly 20 to 25 percent will be the operating cost. That is the maintenance fee SAP will charge. You will pay $2 million on a $10 million budget. 

    You can think of that $2 million as $100,000 you would pay per employee to a team of consultants. If a company is relatively small and only implemented a few million, then we would recommend that they buy SAP business and outsource all the non-SAP activities.

    What other advice do I have?

    I rate SAP S/4HANA nine out of 10. If you want digitization in your organization, go for it. S/4HANA is advanced and highly integrable. It's one of the best ERP solutions, but it depends on your budget because SAP is always costly.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Hybrid Cloud
    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Consultant
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    ArifKundi - PeerSpot reviewer
    Chief Executive Officer at Biz Tech Resources
    Real User
    It's relatively stable, but it still needs time to mature
    Pros and Cons
    • "S4HANA is relatively stable."
    • "We found that the implementing partners themselves are struggling with S4HANA's features. It's not an exact translation of the older ECC, so SAP has taken a new route to do things with S4HANA. Maybe it's a good product, but the implementing partners also like to have an in-depth understanding of the full feature set the product offers."

    What is our primary use case?

    We are consultants who help supervise our customers' implementation projects. Two of our customers use S4HANA. The older ones are on the ECC platform.

    What needs improvement?

    We found that the implementing partners themselves are struggling with S4HANA's features. It's not an exact translation of the older ECC, so SAP has taken a new route to do things with S4HANA. Maybe it's a good product, but the implementing partners also like to have an in-depth understanding of the full feature set the product offers. There are areas where even the implementer has to go back to set, which takes time, so that's one of our major concerns.

    The older implementations were cloud-based, but one is happening now in one of the larger utilities, which sells services to around 4 million consumers. That's an ongoing project that hasn't gone live yet. This will be the real test. In a year, we'll know, and we can give more feedback.

    Another complaint I have is that the screen source is disjointed. When I say this, I'm speaking from a user experience perspective. I don't know the S4HANA database, so I can't say if it's good or bad. I am sure that S4HANA would have certain limitations compared to Oracle, which is the gold standard for databases. Maybe there are some challenges in the backend, but I don't dwell on those because I'm not a technician. But the graphical interface requires improvement, and its flow should be very smooth. 

    Also, the Fiori app is very basic. They need to become richer because people tend to use Fiori to access the S4HANA application to save on license costs. Fiori gives you access because it's a web client, and they market it as an app. It's not really a full-fledged app, but the roadmap has to be cleared from SAP. And when its capabilities improve, it gives a native app experience when people use Fiori.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I haven't been using S4HANA for long. It's been two years now.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    S4HANA is relatively stable, but it's not as stable as ECC was. ECC had a long time to mature, so S4HANA still has a few years to go before it can achieve the level of stability that we've come to expect from SAP.

    How are customer service and support?

    We've primarily relied on the local implementers for support, and there are challenges whenever they need to refer back to SAP's own technical support. It usually takes longer than expected in many cases. Sometimes they're pretty fast, but they're usually not, which is a serious concern.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We've worked with three of the biggest products in the ERP segment: S4HANA, Oracle EBS, and Microsoft Dynamics AXMicrosoft Dynamics is pretty straightforward. It's not as complex and offers a good user experience, whereas SAP through Fiori gives a certain level of user experience, but that's not as good as what Microsoft offers. But the rich line where you go through the desktop license — that user interface is still cumbersome. It's not as user-friendly I must say. On the other hand, Oracle is the middle of the two. I won't say that it's as good as Microsoft's user experience. However, while it is a bit more complex than Microsoft, it's not as complex as SAP. 

    What other advice do I have?

    I would currently rate S4HANA seven out of 10. We tell our clients that SAP's roadmap shows us that S4HANA will mature in time. It won't happen tomorrow. They have to make an informed decision whether they want to live with certain delays in getting certain fixes or go with another solution. SAP is such a big name, so half the time, people are willing to live with those delays with the expectation that things will get better in a year or two. SAP is a trusted name, and I'm sure they must be doing something now to get S4HANA up to speed. I hope they understand that.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    Senior Partner at AGLC Consulting
    Real User
    Solution that can be used on all levels
    Pros and Cons
    • "It is the most stable solution provided by SAP and can be used on all levels."
    • "Their yearly licensing is expensive. Improvements are needed on the user experience level and digital work."

    What is our primary use case?

    Most of my clients use it for controlling finances and for BI (purchasing and sales). Depending on the activity, we can also use it for logistics and plan management, like in energy module ISU — it's a specific module for energy, oil and gas distribution.

    What needs improvement?

    There's lots of improvement to be made on the user experience level and digital work. Since SAP is a transactional software, you can't use it like Salesforce. It's not easy to create automated reports.

    For the user experience, they can try to get out of the strictly industrial point of view because it's an IT solution. It's not always the most fun application the use. It's pretty complicated and if you're not fully trained for it, it isn't easy to understand how it works.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using it for the last four years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    S/4 HANA is the most stable solution provided by SAP.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The scalability is very good. That's the good thing about the S/4 HANA solution.

    How are customer service and support?

    Support is quite good; they know their solutions. Over the last few years, they changed all the resources that were on the first S/4 HANA program. They're pretty efficient. There's always a contract with them for support. Normally, regular support is done internally, but when it comes to SAP bugs, when we can't solve the problem, we go back to SAP support and can rely on them.

    How was the initial setup?

    Setup is complex. SAP is the biggest ERP on the market. We like to say it's the Rolls-Royce of ERPs. So it can't be deployed without a minimum of 10 to 20 consultants, plus approximately the same kind of resources on the business level.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    Licensing is quite expensive. It works with yearly licenses and it's ugly. 

    What other advice do I have?

    I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

    For maintenance of the solution, the number of people needed depends on how many users you have. Basically, now we use TMAs most of the time, but for smaller conditions, it would be a minimum of 10 people. It depends on the number of modules that you have. For example, with my last clients, we had a regional team of 20% plus an external team of more than 10% and it was really not a big deployment or activity.

    For full deployment, the time it takes depends on the complexity of the deployment and the number of processes to review. In a normal situation, basic roll out would be between four to six months and a global project or program can take up to three to five years. It also depends on the number of sites because you have to deploy the solution, and once you have the core model, you need to perform a roll out on every site and do all the necessary training. I've worked on programs before that lasted five or six years with major companies where there were over 700 sites. It's difficult to do more than 50 or 60 sites per year, and even with that, it's complicated. With one of my prior clients, it was a 10-year program.

    With regular companies, there are more than five to seven thousand users and with major ones, on my biggest project, we had 30,000 users worldwide.

    The solution can be used on all levels.  On the IT level, it's a tool that we deploy to enable the tracking of client processes, but it can be used on every level. It's commonly used for finance control, sales and purchasing because those are the biggest parts when managing client TNLs. Depending on the activity, if you're not a big client, you can go down to MRP level, managing all the logistics and all the productivity. It can be used by everyone.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud

    If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

    Microsoft Azure
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    Updated: June 2022
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    Buyer's Guide
    Download our free SAP S4HANA Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.