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Taking the new S/4 for a test drive


By Steven Fleischman


Whenever I hear “S-4”, I imagine a reliable, finely-tuned, sports car with a power curve that’s breathtaking. Of course, it’s red with elegance and lines that exude confidence and performance. Is it just me? Or do you feel the same way? Have I been watching too much Top Gear and flipping through too many car magazines?  


Reality check

Well, SAP S/4HANA (SAP Business Suite 4 SAP HANA) may not be red and it certainly isn’t a sports car, but it has everything else: power, performance, and elegance. Announced on February 3, 2015, SAP’s new business suite leverages the in-memory capabilities of SAP HANA and represents SAP’s greatest innovation since SAP R/3 which was launched way back on July 6, 1992 (now known as SAP ECC (ERP) and bundled as part of SAP Business Suite). And what else would you expect from a next-generation solution from one of the world’s leading solution providers? You got it! S/4HANA is optimized to take advantage of the power, performance, and redefined economics of HP ProLiant Gen9 servers and HP Converged Systems for SAP HANA.


S4 HANA.png

Figure 1 - SAP S/4HANA allows you to reimagine your business by enabling your digital supply chain and running simple


But S/4HANA isn’t just an upgrade. It’s a revolutionary, next-generation business suite specifically designed to help you “run simple” and take advantage of opportunities that come with the digital economy. It allows you to:

  • Deliver instant insights across lines of business within your organization
  • Rapidly connect through business and social networks
  • Plug into the Internet of Things in real time to deliver increased value
  • Drive transformation through simplicity and a personalized user experience with SAP Fiori

But why do we need it?

Managing IT complexity
Do you remember the term “spaghetti code?” It’s a derogatory term for source code that has an unnecessarily complex and tangled control structure that uses frequent branching from one section of the program to another. If you’ve ever had to do it, trying to debug spaghetti code is an absolute nightmare. And it's resource-intensive since spaghetti programs generally tend to violate just about every rule in the book when it comes to writing efficient, structured code.


The problem is that we don’t just have “spaghetti code,” we now have “spaghetti IT,” and it’s strangling us! The complexity underlying the majority of today’s IT systems is throttling innovation and rapidly escalating costs. The limitations of legacy systems means that over the years, IT has become more complex, not less. And when it comes to operating within the digital universe, CIO Insight’s February 2015 Managing Complexity Survey  states that this complexity translates to an inability to :

  • Meet customer demand across multiple channels
  • Correlate company-wide insights for faster, better-informed decision-making
  • Evolve business processes to meet the needs of today’s business
  • Drive new business models to create competitive differentiation

According to Harvard Business Review’s The Business Case for Managing Complexity, over 85 percent of executives recognize that rather than serving as enablers, their business and decision-making processes have become hindrances to growth in a digital economy. CIO Insight’s February 2015 Managing Complexity Survey found that almost 90 percent of respondents cite complexity as a major stumbling block to innovation and have already begun to roll out IT simplification projects.


The right solution at the right time

That’s why SAP S/4HANA running on HP ProLiant Gen9 servers or HP Converged Infrastructure is the right solution at the right time. The combined power of two of the world’s leading infrastructure providers allows you to:

  • Easily connect people, devices, and business networks, and leverage the Internet of Things and Big Data to deliver new value across multiple channels
  • Simplify your processes and drive increased efficiencies in real-time by eliminating batch processing
  • Make better decisions on the fly with for increased impact with insights from anywhere across the company

Over the next few weeks, I’ll expand on exactly how SAP S/4HANA can transform your business as we analyze the technology as well as the deployment options. Stay tuned! And let me get back to dreaming about my sleek, new sports car!


Follow me at @Fleishmantweet to stay up-to-date.


For more information on HP and SAP HANA, visit


Additional Resources
•    HP & Alliance Partner Solutions
•   HP Converged Systems

Social Media
•    Join the HP Alliances LinkedIn Group
•    Follow us @HPAllianceOne and @HPAlliances


Steven Fleischman is a member of the HP Corporate Strategic Alliances team as a Microsoft and SAP Evangelist. He has been at HP for 10 years in various marketing, business development, and channel program roles working with Microsoft, Oracle, and SAP. Steven attended Syracuse University and St. John’s University and has a BS in Marketing with a focus on International Marketing.

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