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SAP ECC Maintenance extension 2027 S4HANA

Big news! SAP has extended ECC support until 2027

SAP has delayed the end in support for SAP Business Suite 7 (incl. SAP ECC 6) until the end of 2027. Optional extended support until the end of 2030 is also possible (for a two percentage-point increase in the maintenance cost). A commitment was also made to keep SAP S/4HANA support until at least the end of 2040! (SAP News)

Why SAP extended their support for SAP ECC 6 until 2027

The German software giant is facing reality. The number of SAP S/4HANA migrations is still rather modest, and it is completely impossible that every existing customer will have converted to SAP S/4HANA (either through a greenfield or a brownfield approach) by 2025.

With their decision to extend support for SAP ECC 6 until 2027, SAP provide customers with more time and greater certainty to plan their own move to SAP S/4HANA. Up to now, especially costs and Change Management were the biggest reasons for organisations not to move to S/4, meaning they needed to have a clear business case.

So far (as of 2020), PIKON has migrated four big customers to SAP S/4HANA, including only one with a classic conversion (brownfield) approach. The “early adopters” of SAP S/4HANA usually have big problems with their existing SAP ECC system and/or business processes, meaning that we’re currently mostly seeing greenfield approaches (or variations thereof) to convert to SAP S/4HANA.

S/4HANA workshop offers

Are you just starting out with S/4HANA? We will give you an initial overview.
You will learn about the innovations in S/4HANA in logistics, accounting and the user interface. In addition, migration scenarios and appropriate project approaches.

Time required: 0,5 days

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You have the task to develop the S/4HANA strategy in your company? We teach you the cornerstones of the S/4HANA implementation.
Effects on business processes, organizations, master data and employees are topics of the workshop as well as migration scenarios and target architectures.

Time required: 1 day

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You have already gained an initial overview, but have further questions on various points? You can put together your own workshop from a modular system of possible in-depth topics. As the workshop is put together individually for you, the required time is not fixed.

Time required: 0,5 – 2 days depending on individual arrangement.

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The S/4HANA implementation “on the greenfield” is already set for your company?
In the workshop, we develop together with you the appropriate roadmap with time and budget planning and address topics such as data transfer, preliminary work, etc.

Time required: 1 – 2 days, depending on individual arrangement.

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You have decided on Conversion as the scenario for your migration? Learn in the workshop how to best approach your SAP S/4HANA conversion project and develop your digital roadmap.

Time required: 0,5 – 2 days depending on individual arrangement.

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How the deadline postponement for SAP ECC support impacts your own SAP S/4HANA strategy

The deadline pressure for a move to SAP S/4HANA before 2025 is now officially off the table. Does this mean that you, as an SAP user, can sit back and relax? Not at all! As from 2027, it will definitely cost more to maintain your SAP system if you are not yet on SAP S/4HANA. These higher maintenance costs should inevitably be taken into account for all business case considerations and future plans to move to SAP S/4HANA.

From our experiences over the past years, it is very difficult to create a business case with a high ROI purely based on technology promises. It’s no different with SAP S/4HANA: higher speeds and new interfaces alone are only of limited benefit to businesses.
If you see migrating to S/4HANA as an IT-driven release change project, it is very difficult to get the necessary investment approval from your decision-makers.

Our recommendation is to not just take IT aspects into consideration for your own SAP S/4HANA strategy. In order to achieve a strong return on investment, it is also recommended to take the opportunity to incorporate process improvements into your SAP S/4HANA roadmap. You’ll then notice that 2027 isn’t actually that far away anymore.

S/4HANA as a trigger for increasing efficiency through process optimisation

If you want to increase efficiency, transparency and quality within your organisation, you can only achieve this through:

  • improving your business processes (streamlining, harmonising and standardising)
  • data cleansing (quality of the master data and the maintenance processes)
  • organisational development (further development of the organisation and optimising communication within your company).

SAP S/4HANA is a valuable system – and in some cases the most important trigger – for such Business Re-Engineering, but not a replacement for this!

Wait no longer and start taking your first steps to SAP S/4HANA today

How far is your company in its digital transformation with SAP S/4HANA?

  • Download our white paper “Your road to digital transformation with SAP S/4HANA” and learn how to make your organisation fit for the digital future with SAP S/4HANA. This includes our experiences on how SAP S/4HANA has changed and optimised the modern Financial Accounting & Controlling and the Logistics processes. In another chapter, we explain the different options you have to migrate to SAP S/4HANA and how you can come to the best migration strategy for your organisation.
  • If you already know that you want to tackle the transition to SAP S/4HANA via conversion/brownfield, you will find a guide including the preliminary projects that you can already tackle today in the white paper “S/4HANA Conversion Guide”.


S/4HANA Converion Guide

Learn about the most important aspects of a migration to SAP S/4HANA using the brownfield approach. Following a structured approach based on SAP’s Activate method, we guide you through all project phases in the white paper, from project planning to go-live.

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About the author
Jörg Hofmann
Jörg Hofmann
I am the founder and Chief Financial Officer of PIKON Deutschland AG. The focus of my consulting work is in mechanical and plant engineering as well as in high-tech companies, in particular in controlling complex customer projects with the help of the SAP modules PS (project system) and CO (controlling). Another focus is the design and implementation of parallel accounting using the new general ledger.

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