A fundamental building block and opportunity for finance transformation

Use the update to SAP S/4HANA as an opportunity

With SAP S/4HANA, SAP has brought a new ERP system to market that is fundamentally different from its previous ERP model, SAP R/3.

Switching to SAP S/4HANA brings huge opportunities for our clients: in the digital age, companies need to analyse an increasing amount of data, act flexibly and rapidly on the market, and have the capacity to precisely analyse their own business situation.

S/4HANA is the basis for multidimensional, flexible and transparent reporting that enables companies and management to keep up in today’s digital age. The key to success is to translate the business requirements into technical requirements for a unified data model – the system needs to take into account right now of what the finance function of the future will look like and meet these future needs.

Some companies have already successfully implemented their new SAP S/4HANA systems, but most companies are only just beginning their transformations.

When are you going to start your journey into the future?

What you can expect from a SAP S/4HANA transformation

Why you should switch to SAP S/4HANA now

What potential does SAP S/4HANA offer?

With SAP S/4HANA, you get more than just a new ERP system: it enables organizations to gain a competitive advantage that is needed to keep up with the fast pace in the digital finance world of tomorrow.  

Speed and transparency at lower costs

The benefits of implementing S/4HANA include:

  • Greater transparency with an integrated data model
  • Increased efficiency due to real-time availability of data, accelerated workflows and reductions in time required for postings
    User friendly interface in SAP Fiori 

The new SAP S/4HANA system has a lot to offer in regards to new functionalities, especially for the Finance function:  

For example, data from internal and external accounting is harmonised in a ‘universal journal’ using an integrated data model. The universal journal replaces the separate data tables used in the SAP R/3 system and provides a common pool of data.

What strategic decisions need to be made?

As well as opportunities, the switch to SAP S/4HANA also brings significant challenges. Transformation projects are generally complex and time-consuming. There are a number of fundamental strategic decisions that companies need to make before switching to the new SAP S/4HANA system. This includes answering questions such as:

Business or IT transformation?
The right transformation approach varies depending on the degree of change required in your organization and what level of standardisation you’re looking for. While a business transformation involves rethinking and redeveloping processes and system configurations, pure IT transformations are closely guided by your current process landscape and system landscape.

Single or multi-system strategy?
Most companies today have a very heterogeneous system landscape, including many different ERP systems and interfaces. When introducing SAP S/4HANA, you need to decide whether you want one system or separate systems for each business area. 

Embedded in other IT development projects?
Your SAP S/4HANA system needs to consider not only the requirements from today’s business but also your business’ future requirements. Interactions with other digital developments such as robotics or artificial intelligence (AI) need to be considered and  determinate the whole project setup, -approach and -strategy. . 

Cloud-based or on-premises?
SAP S/4HANA is available as a cloud-based ERP system and in an on-premises version. The decision on whether to opt for a cloud or non-cloud version needs to be made based on your company's strategy and the requirements within your organization. 

When is the best time for your SAP S/4HANA finance transformation?

The first few companies have now successfully implemented their new SAP S/4HANA systems, but most companies are only just beginning their transformation journey.

The best starting point is dependent on many different factors, such as  the size of your company, the complexity of your corporate structure, the number of other ongoing projects and your migration strategy.

SAP S/4HANA has great potential to improve your processes and provide transparency in reporting. 82% of companies that have already introduced the new SAP S/4HANA system have achieved a positive business case and are benefitting from cost savings.

The need to invest in your future is inescapable. But you can also make sure the benefits flow as quickly as possible.

Our expertise and proven project methodology

Our experts have already enabled companies to successfully implement over 300 global SAP S/4HANA projects. Based on the experience we’ve gained, we work with you to get your finance transformation right on the track.

Matching business and technical requirements is crucial to the success of transformation projects. We offer a holistic advisory service, with experts who have both business and technical know-how. This means that you get everything from one hand, from the preliminary study to the technical implementation.


SAP S/4HANA: experiences from companies in German-speaking countries

Customers with SAP ERP solutions are expected to continue receiving standard support from SAP until the end of 2027. There is also an option to extend service support to the end of 2030, but switching to other ERP systems or migrating to on-premises or cloud-based SAP S/4HANA will become unavoidable in the near future.

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Event recordings

Transform your tomorrow success story: S/4HANA go-live @Zalando

Zalando successfully went live with S/4HANA in the extraordinary summer of 2020. How is this project contributing to Zalando’s digitalisation strategy? PwC Germany Partner and Advisory Digital Leader Susanne Arnoldy, S/4HANA Finance Transformation Advisory Lead Partner Moritz Wewer, Yuriy Volosenko from Zalando and Daniel Leber from SAP shared their experiences [tLS1] in our new ‘transform your tomorrow’ LinkedIn live format.

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Events on SAP

PwC @ SAP NOW 2021

SAP NOW Berlin gives you an opportunity to find out – from SAP themselves – about the solutions and innovations that can support you on your digital transformation journey. As an SAP Platinum Partner, PwC will also be at the event, using innovative showcases and customer presentations to demonstrate quick and practical ways for your company to deploy SAP solutions.

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Marcus Völmecke

Marcus Völmecke

Finance Transformation Leader, PwC Germany

Moritz Wewer

Moritz Wewer

Finance Transformation Leader, PwC Germany