If you walked the halls of the UK & Ireland SAP User Group (UKISUG) Connect 2019 conference in Birmingham this December, you probably had a hard time avoiding the event’s most talked about topic: SAP’s latest cloud platform, S/4HANA.
But it wasn’t exactly S/4HANA’s capabilities and features that were top-of-mind. Instead, it was a major looming deadline: End-of-support for SAP’s ECC6 in 2025. That means, if you’re using SAP’s ERP software—and it’s not S/4HANA—you’re on a deadline. SAP will continue to offer support for its older ERP software until the clock runs out in 2025. But when 2025 hits, businesses that want support from SAP will need to migrate to its flagship software, S/4HANA.
That has a lot of people wondering when they’ll finally make the move to S/4HANA. In fact, according to a recent survey conducted at UKISUG Connect, a lot of current customers are reluctant to tackle the S/4HANA migration, and they don’t mind taking their time getting there. Of the 467 conference attendees, 58% said they did not intend to make the move to S/4HANA in two years. Another 27% said they wouldn’t upgrade in the next three years.
The reason for the hesitation? A lot of it has to do with cost: 42% of SAP customers believe the move to S/4HANA will require too much of a financial commitment. Another 34% believe the move would require too much change management at their organizations.
Here's why you shouldn't delay your S/4HANA upgrade
So with 2025 quickly approaching, what’s an SAP customer to do? Get ahead of the end-of-support date now—even if it seems costly, daunting, and resource-intensive. Why? Because ignoring SAP’s end-of-support timeline can come with some pretty serious business risks. This includes:
Software VulnerabilitiesA firewall and anti-virus software aren’t enough to protect your business from unpatchable vulnerabilities. Hackers are quick to exploit end-of-support scenarios (and they did exactly that when Microsoft SQL faced an end-of-support deadline).
New applications are optimized for the most recent database, so using “legacy” software means you can’t upgrade to the latest and greatest features and functionality.
Entrusting your critical information to a decade-old database or an unsecured application is downright risky. Aside from security lapses, it could result in hefty fines, company shutdowns or (in extreme situations) jail time.
High Operating Costs
The costs of maintaining and fixing any legacy software can be pretty steep (Seriously. Maintaining outdated software costs this company millions).
S/4HANA is hailed as the future of SAP, meaning all future strategic investments from SAP will be directed accordingly. This leaves ECC’s functionality to degrade every day. That poor performance alone could be more costly than an overdue upgrade.
Are you ready to reap the benefits of S/4HANA?
The bottom line? The potential risks aren’t worth delaying an upgrade—especially when you consider just how revolutionary S/4HANA can be for your business.
Check out our full guide on successfully making your move to S/4HANA—including its endless transformational benefits and how Velocity can help you get there.