An Introduction to SAP Activate and the Fit-to-Standard Mindset
Published: October 13, 2021
SAP Activate is a methodology. It lays down, logically, the roadmap to follow when executing an SAP implementation – from the project scope to going live.
SAP Fit-to-standard is a mindset. It focuses on developing an attitude that requires us to look at what is available before creating something from scratch. A ready solution that meets 98% of your requirements is better than investing efforts in creating a new solution.
SAP Activate and Fit-to-standard are closely interlinked. While SAP Activate is the methodology used in the deployment, upgrade or migration to S/4HANA, SAP Fit-to-standard is an approach that expedites the implementation approach of S/4HANA.
Before we discuss SAP Fit-to-standard, here is a quick recap of SAP Activate –
In simple terms, it is a ready DIY manual on running and deploying any S/4HANA landscape – on the cloud, on-prem or even a hybrid environment.
SAP Activate has always been the playbook for project managers and technical and functional teams looking to manage the implementation or migration to S/4HANA, covering the deployment, upgrades, and migration to SAP S/4HANA.
SAP Activate = SAP Best Practices + Guided Configuration + Methodology.
SAP Activate Process
SAP Activate process is divided into six clear phases, and each of these has clearly defined deliverables and tasks. Monitoring tools are built in to check quality at every stage and ensure the progress is on track.
To make it easy for users, SAP also recommends third-party tools to guide them through the steps.
How-to resources termed as ‘Accelerators” are additionally available for users. These are detailed documents for each deliverable. They guide the user through the process, ensuring minimal risk and eliminating errors through best practices.
Best practices help navigate the implementation even through diverse landscapes and multiple deployment options.
SAP Activate Approach has changed the mindset from traditional “Can I take the order,” i.e., AS-IS workshops and Blueprinting (ASAP methodology), to “Let us guide you,” i.e., Fit-to-standard workshops (Activate methodology).
The traditional AS IS workshops (ASAP methodology) were requirement-driven, taking a lot of time for configuration and customization. The customer team/business had to wait until the realization phase to see the design and solution for their requirement.
With Activate and Fit-to-standard workshop, the standard solution is visible to the customer/business team from Day One of the “Fit-to-standard workshop.”
SAP Activate Phases and the objective
Where does Fit-to-standard fit in?
Fit-to-standard seeks to enable rapid adoption of S/4HANA. SAP advocates this implementation approach to enhance quality, simplify, and speed up the process. It looks at standardizing customer processes to meet a pre-delivered solution rather than start from zero.
The idea of Fit-to-standard is woven into the SAP activate workstream. It seeks to create standardization across the ERP, including at the core solution level.
To derive the best out of Fit-to-standard, it is equally important to adopt the best practices in the industry and use S/4HANA applications correctly. In addition, business leaders must provide employees the support they need to adopt new systems and processes through change management initiatives.
Applying Fit-to-standards in the Solution Realization Process
- Fit-to-standard Process: As a part of the Design and Configuration workstream, the objective is to map the customer’s processes to the SAP standard processes. The aim is to discover how to ensure optimization and solution configuration for the customer.
- Fit-to-standard Accelerators: Starter systems, Business Process flows, test scripts, Expert Configuration and SSCUI References, Steps before Raising an incident, Business Driven Configuration Questionnaire, Integration and API List, Backlog Template and Learning Center are resources to support self-enablement.
- Customer Self-Enablement: My learning Hub is an all-encompassing resource center. For the user, it offers an easily accessible cloud-based repository for SAP professional education. This prepares and enables users to execute their project with a learning center, solution Trainer demos and task tutorials.
- Business Driven Configuration Assessment: Questionnaires in SAP roadmap viewer help collect business-driven inputs from the business expert to share with the configuration expert running the Fit-to-standard workshop.
- Fit-to-standard Workshop Preparation: All project stakeholders review the SOW, Scope statement (Starter System) and Discovery assessment and gain knowledge on Best Practices. The Fit-to-standard workshop schedule then creates a timeline to conduct workshops for each of the elements/functions, e.g., for Fit-to-standard for COA, HR, Sales, etc.
- Fit-to-standard Workshop Execution: Self-enabled checkpoint to review preparedness assessment. This would be the review of best practices in the process flow, demonstration of scope items and concepts, discussion of process fit with customer requirement, identification of delta requirement, identification of required configuration and enablement of customer execution of standard scenarios.
Fit-to-standard addresses both functional and technical issues related to workshop planning and execution. But most of all, it guides in setting up the foundation for enabling participants to collaborate, communicate and engage in learning and effectively using the tools and techniques and executing the tasks efficiently.
- Fit-to-standard-Overall Approach:
- Review Best Practice Process Flow
- Demonstrate Scope Item and Concepts
- Discuss how the processes fit with the customer’s requirements.
- Identify Delta Requirements
- Identify required configuration, integration and extensions.
- Enable Customer execution of standard scenarios.
- Possible Partner Implementation Approaches as per Activate methodology:
- New Implementation (S/4HANA On-Prem and S/4HANA Cloud (ES, EX or Private)
- System conversion (SAP ECC to S/4HANA (On-Prem or Private Cloud)
- System copy (SAP S/4HANA to SAP S/4HANA Cloud)
- Selective data transition (Combination of Conversion and New Process)
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