What does migration to SAP EWM actually mean?
Are you actually already asking yourself the right questions, with the upcoming migration of your warehouse processes?
- Do your migration projects need to be parallelized?
Should your EWM be converted before your inventory management?
- Does it make sense to migrate to a decentralized EWM first, followed by a return to an embedded EWM?
- How can you minimize the risks?
Here you will find important tools for your system migration to S/4HANA EWM.
The decision for a deployment strategy
When migrating to SAP EWM, you must first decide whether an embedded EWM, a decentralized EWM or even a cloud solution is favored. The question about the deployment variant alone has a strategic character.
It defines, for example, whether you will have complete governance and process control in the future (on-premise) or whether you will hand over operation to a service provider (cloud solution) and thus use SAP EWM standard business processes. If you decide on the cloud variant (standard or single-tenant edition), this automatically means a new implementation (greenfield). In this case, only a data migration is possible, no transfer of customer-specific special processes.
Since a distinction is made between different forms of migration, there is a short digression at this point. We will concentrate here on the differentiations necessary for this article:
- Data migration: This refers to the most minimal form of migration. Data such as warehouse stock, storage bins or warehouse product information is transferred to the target system.
- Software migration: This form of migration is seen more as a process and describes the transfer of customizing settings and lines of code into the target system. Ideally, utilities are available.
Which SAP EWM version is right one for me?
The extent to which a basic version of SAP S/4HANA Supply Chain Management for EWM (embedded EWM for short) covers your functional needs must also be clarified. As soon as, for example, wave management, transport units or integration with warehouse automation are necessary for logistical process handling, the probability of an Advanced version increases; up to the decentralized EWM installation. Depending on the initial situation, target architecture and sequence of the conversion (for example, first ERP to S/4HANA and then LE-WM to Embedded EWM), a tool-based software migration can also facilitate partial steps of the project planning. Alternatively, the warehouse management module (LE-WM) can also be decoupled from the existing ERP system.
What does this mean for my SAP EWM migration?
The final step in a move to an embedded EWM in S/4HANA and in a decentralized EWM on S/4HANA always represents a system conversion and means a new implementation. To what extent future SAP tools will be made available for conversion remains to be seen.
Whether using migration tools or manually adjusting existing processes, such a migration project must always be based on a sufficient test plan. This means from day 1 of the changeover. Experience shows that you either test the migration tool or the process set up via customizing. So why not take the effort and organize the conversion from EWM to S/4HANA as a holistic transformation?
This means for you:
- A migration of the most necessary data, for example for storage bin upload (/SCWM/SBUP) or inventory upload (/SCWM/ISU).
- Making all other settings manually and testing them in the process network. In this way, optimization and sorting out can also be carried out in the brownfield approach.
What can a possible roadmap look like and which tools should I use?
SAP S/4HANA offers different possibilities to map different warehouses in the same client: It is technically possible to organize locations at the same time on Embedded EWM, some on LE-WM and others on a decentralized EWM server. This situation makes a sequenced changeover possible until 2025 – provided the right migration strategy and changeover sequence.
To determine these, various tools are available:
There is no ideal way
In addition to the question of which project approach to choose (greenfield vs. brownfield), it is also important to note that a decision to migrate to SAP S/4HANA must be made individually.
A role is played by:
- The current conversion efforts and time plans in the SAP S/4HANA implementation for the ERP processes.
- The preservation of competitive advantages through current modifications and logistics projects (for example, new warehouse construction and automation projects in intralogistics).
The decisive factor will be which deployment option per warehouse location fits the company’s strategy and planning.
If you have any questions about this or any other topic related to SAP EWM, please do not hesitate to contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Senior Consultant SAP Logistics