A simple, beautiful, intuitive user experience. Think consumer-grade.
That being said, “simplifying” does not mean dumbing down. Instead, simplifying the user experience means making it easier to find the information that you need, when you need it, without wait times, in order to make better decisions. And by that definition, with SAP Fiori, the user experience has been significantly simplified.
Finance, in all its complexity, can actually be beautiful. Of courses, it’s more beautiful if the financial results are positive!
The latest news is that you can now leverage the SAP Fiori Cloud – with your on-premise deployment as the source of information. Which expands the idea of simplification – leveraging the SAP S/4HANA Cloud and reap the benefits of the user experience, without changing your underlying on-premise infrastructure.
So let’s take a look at what this means in the Finance world.
The first example is entering a manual journal entry. In the SAP GUI, all the fields that you need to enter are available – but in some cases, accessing them requires a pop-up to ensure that all fields are filled in, and most often these are the fields needed for controlling processes. Now look at the SAP Fiori experience below – those fields can be made available on one screen, ensuring that management reporting information is not missed.
Now for another example – think of financial reporting. In many traditional reports, the report is essentially a list of transactional line items. Finance teams then typically needed to export these line items and roll up the information to identify trends. Even with SAP Business Warehouse, often only summary information is extracted in many implementations. So once trends were identified, it would be necessary to again determine which transactions were relevant to that result, which was often time-consuming. Only then could action plans be discussed.
With SAP S/4HANA Finance, the trends can be calculated immediately and be shown in a dashboard. These dashboards leverage SAP Fiori, using roles that are assigned to individual finance team members. Color-coding of the results then helps finance teams to quickly identify problem areas. In the background, the detailed transactions are accessed and results are calculated on the fly, be it a trial balance of General Ledger accounts, or calculated KPIs. And a finance or business user can then simply drill down to the relevant transactions that comprise the totals or the KPIs without any extra manual work. And be able to discuss action plans immediately.
While all financial information is required for external disclosures, there are often fields that are not required by every finance user. Or there may be instances in which certain managers need additional information on top of the G/L accounts in order to make management decisions. Previously, this meant going to the IT department to variants of each report created, either including or excluding particular fields. Finance users can now do this themselves, by adding or taking away fields. For example, for income statement information, one user may only need G/L account balances, as shown below, while another user may need segment and/or profit center information.
With SAP Fiori, each financial team member can choose the relevant fields that should be displayed in the report, meaning that IT involvement is not necessary to create report variants.
What about the Universal Journal?
Let’s add another layer to this topic. The Universal Journal within SAP S/4HANA Finance eliminates the need for totals and index tables, so that information can be accessed immediately from one transactional table to provide the information on KPIs discussed previously. In addition, it consolidates tables that were previously separate – therefore the list of available fields has increased significantly. Accounts receivable information can now include customer and product information. Accounts payable data can now include vendor and purchased products information. Asset information, material ledger information, controlling information – all are there. Without needing to run separate reports to get to that next level of detail. This operational information can now be included in financial reports to support management decisions.
SAP Fiori Cloud for SAP S/4HANA Finance
SAP Fiori Cloud runs on the SAP Cloud Platform. And as mentioned previously, it runs against an on-premise implementation.
What is the benefit?
In terms of the scope, the roles available are below, which highlight the core financial processes. Keep in mind that SAP Fiori Cloud also encompasses additional lines of business capabilities, including human resources, sales, supply chain, sourcing and procurement, and travel – all of which have financial implications.