Which transformation approach is suitable for the S/4HANA implementation of an international group – if data is to be migrated only selectively and downtimes of the ERP system are to be reduced to a minimum? The success story of the Arauco Group, which was carried out in collaboration with IBM and SNP, provides some insights.
To position itself for the digital age, Chile's Arauco Group – a global leader in sustainable forestry and renewable energy – planned to modernize its own IT systems. The main goal was to provide the entire company, containing industrial and distribution sites in a total of eleven countries, with a modern S/4HANA platform that would bring new features and innovations. The plan was to implement the SAP S/4HANA landscape within a cloud infrastructure.
S/4HANA strategy: Migrating only selected data
The migration from ERP R/3 to S/4HANA was to be completed in partnership with IBM. However, the project proved to be complex: Auroca's legacy system had already been in place for more than 18 years in the respective countries and had a correspondingly large volume of data. Since the company no longer needed this much data in the new system, only selected data was to be migrated to the new S/4HANA world as a basis for the operations of the business.
To carry out the selective migration, IBM recommended that the project managers work with its global cooperation partner SNP Schneider-Neureither & Partner. The software and IT consulting company headquartered in Heidelberg, Germany, specializes in the realization of complex digitization projects and uses its in-house data transformation platform CrystalBridge for this purpose.
Before the transformation: Cleaning up the data history
In order to be able to perform the selective data migration, Arauco was faced with the task of initially reviewing its own data history: All data had to be cleared and selected. This process was a major time challenge within the large project, as there was a total of almost 14 TB of information.
At the same time, it was necessary to implement and integrate certain modules from scratch due to their incompatibility with S/4HANA. In addition, so-called Z-developments of the previous ERP system – i.e.: add-ons that map individual processes and offer solutions beyond the standard – had to be adapted.
Selective data migration minimizes system downtime
With the help of SNP's transformation platform and selective migration approach, it was possible to migrate only a selected data history from the past two years – and to do so at a greatly accelerated rate. This made it possible to meet another important requirement of Arauco: not to interrupt ongoing operations for long. After all, during the transfer of systems, data and applications to a new system, it is generally technically necessary to shut down business processes. Alas, this may quickly result in immense costs that need to be minimized.
"If we had not implemented the selective data migration with SNP, the company's operations would have been significantly disrupted," says Flavio Fernández-Dávila Mendoza, IT Project Manager at Arauco.
The software-based and automated transformation approach ensured that the project was successfully completed within the specified timeframe. "Without SNP and IBM, it would not have been possible to carry out a migration with such a large volume of data," says Leandro San Miguel De Nobili, CIO at Arauco, summing up the project, which involved migrating a total of 4,000 users to the cloud.
Advantages of the selective approach at a glance
- Selective data migration enabled the implementation of the SAP S/4HANA landscape within a cloud infrastructure.
- The focus was on consistent data selected by Arauco from the past two years.
- Thanks to the innovative transformation approach, cost reductions were possible.
- Downtime during data migration: minimizing ERP system outage
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