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Product and Topic Expert
Product and Topic Expert
SAP Activate is the next generation SAP implementation framework that gives customers the freedom to get up and running quickly to innovate continuously with SAP S/4HANA Cloud. SAP Activate combines SAP Best Practices, guided configuration, and implementation methodology to get your organization onboarded onto SAP S/4HANA Cloud to run your business live.

Sven Denecken introduced all phases (Discover, Prepare, Explore, Realize, Deploy, and Run) in last week’s blog post, today we will dive little deeper and introduce the accelerators and tools that are available for customers in the Discover and Prepare phases of their SAP S/4HANA Cloud journey.

SAP Activate Methodology users are often surprised by the level of detail that is covered in the implementation roadmap. Especially users with experience of using more general implementation roadmaps like ASAP tell us how they appreciate the level of detailed guidance SAP Activate offers. Users also commented on the change in the implementation approach, such as one of our manufacturing clients who summarized their experience with SAP Activate as follows: “The SAP Activate methodology really worked for us, it was really helpful. The idea that you can get pre-delivered content and standup and an instance of the application and get your team working on it within weeks that was huge for us. There was no sitting around, and talking about what do you want your process to be…, we were able to try the application and figure out what works and what’s missing quickly.”

Discover Phase

The purpose of the Discover phase is to discover the solution capabilities, understand the business value and benefits of the solution to customer’s business, determine the adoption strategy and roadmap in alignment with understanding the solution capabilities and product roadmap.

SAP provides customers with various resources to support decision making process, from the SAP S/4HANA Journeymap, through SAP S/4HANA Flipbook, to the SAP S/4HANA Community Network.

Customers and project teams can use the free of charge SAP S/4HANA Cloud trial system to become familiar with solution capabilities. The trial gives users the perspective of how the fully functioning system will perform once the implementation has been finalized. Customers can use the pre-defined guided tours to experience the system as users executing daily activities across Finance, Professional Services, Purchasing, Sales and Production. Click here to begin your free 14-day SAP S/4HANA Cloud trial and experience the agility, simplicity of SAP S/4HANA Cloud.

Additionally, customers planning implementation of SAP S/4HANA Cloud, can request a Discovery Assessment service, a workshop in which SAP team together with customer assess the needed solution scope for implementation of SAP S/4HANA Cloud. The outcome of the workshop defines which business scenario’s, processes and scope items are relevant for implementation.

All these resources offer extensive knowledge to jump start your learning of SAP S/4HANA Cloud and the many benefits it can bring to your organization. To conclude the Discover phase of SAP Activate, customers and sales teams agree on implementation scope, project timelines, and targeted solution model. The next phase in the SAP Activate methodology is the Prepare phase.

Prepare Phase

The purpose of the Prepare phase is to provide the initial planning and preparation for the project to ensure key activities are accounted for in the project timeline. In this phase, the project is initiated, plans are finalized, project team is assigned, the starter system is provisioned and work is under way to start the project optimally.

During this phase, project team go through a few iterations to refine the project plans and to align project activities including confirmation of project goals, high-level scope, clear definition of project roles and responsibilities, and strong governance to steer the project. Planning must occur at the start of the project to validate the core set of activities which must take place for optimal project efficiency to deliver the desired outcome per project scope statement.

Critical step is the definition of project management plans and planning for various risks that may impact the project (both internal and external events).

For example a customer who implemented SAP S/4HANA Cloud with project team members located in APJ. Due to a natural disaster which impacted the site with project team members, the project had to be put on hold for several weeks to ensure project staff safety and well-being. Having a comprehensive risk management plan helps customers plan and manage risk during their project.

During the Prepare phase the Starter System will be provisioned to the SAP S/4HANA Cloud customers. The SAP Activate methodology for SAP S/4HANA Cloud details the activities a customer needs to take to receive the system and create user IDs for project team members.

Another critical deliverable in the Prepare phase is to onboard the project team, including customer team members. The onboarding activities typically cover the implementation approach and introduction to the SAP S/4HANA Cloud solution capabilities across the scope of the product that is being implemented (i.e. Finance, Professional Services, Manufacturing, etc.). The project team will complete kick-off and onboarding session with SAP product expert and self-enablement activities at this time. Customers will access the learning resources including the SAP S/4HANA Cloud Journeys to learn about SAP S/4HANA Cloud solution capabilities (for example SAP S/4HANA Cloud Finance Learning Journey - note, all journeys are available here).

The Prepare phase is formally closed through the Phase Close activities that are detailed in the implementation roadmap and include execution of the formal quality gate to confirm that all required activities have been completed and the project team can proceed to Explore phase.

What’s coming next…

Stay tuned for the next blog which will be released next week on Wednesday and we will cover the Explore phase of SAP Activate for SAP S/4HANA Cloud including Fit-to-Standard analysis.

To stay informed about new posts in this blog series, make sure to follow us via @SDenecken and @janmusil. The blog posts will appear in the SAP Communities space with tag #sapactivate, and will also be announced on the SAP Activate Methodology Jam group that you can request to join here, the community of 20k people already actively engaged.

If this topic series interests you, we want to pre-announce the soon to be released e-book SAP S/4HANA Cloud: Implementation with SAP Activate which will become available in a few weeks from SAP PRESS.

Let us know your thoughts and feedback either in the comments to this blog series or in the SAP Activate Jam group(s).