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Key Differences Between SAP ECC and SAP S/4HANA

Among SAP's enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, SAP ECC (Enterprise Core Component) and SAP S/4HANA (Business Suite 4 SAP HANA) are the main systems. SAP S/4HANA is presented as the successor to SAP ECC and is designed to meet the requirements of the modern business world. This article will discuss the key differences between the two systems, when SAP S/4HANA was launched, the changes made, and the new processes involved. 


Release Time and Evolution 

SAP S/4HANA was first launched in 2015. This system is built on SAP's HANA in-memory database platform, representing an innovative and improved ERP solution over the existing ECC system. S/4HANA aims to offer businesses faster and more flexible business process management by leveraging advancements in database technology and modern data processing techniques. 


Key Differences 

▸ Database Structure: 

SAP ECC: Operates on traditional disk-based databases and processing can be relatively slower. 

SAP S/4HANA: Runs on SAP's HANA in-memory database. This allows for much faster data processing, as data is continuously stored in RAM, which speeds up processing tasks. 

▸ Interface and User Experience: 

SAP ECC: Has more traditional, complex, and less user-friendly interfaces. 

SAP S/4HANA: Comes with the SAP Fiori user interface. Fiori offers a modern, simple, and user-friendly experience and is compatible with mobile devices. 

▸ Business Processes and Modules: 

SAP ECC: Offers inflexible business processes and modules. Business processes are usually more rigid and not open to change. 

SAP S/4HANA: Processes are more modular and flexible. Additionally, decision-making processes are supported through live analytics and business intelligence integration. 

▸ Performance and Scalability: 

SAP ECC: May experience performance issues when working with larger data sets. 

SAP S/4HANA: Can easily handle large volumes of data thanks to its high-performance and scalable architecture. 

New Processes Introduced 

SAP S/4HANA introduces many new business processes and functions:

Real-Time Data Analysis: The ability to analyze data from business operations in real-time offers businesses the opportunity for instant decision-making. 

Integrated IoT Functions: Internet of Things (IoT) integration allows for collecting data from machines and devices and incorporating it into business processes. 

Simplified Data Model: Simplification of data structures speeds up reporting and analysis processes. 

Enhanced User Experience: Thanks to the Fiori interface, users can work more effectively and efficiently. 


SAP S/4HANA is a faster, more flexible, and user-friendly ERP system that replaces SAP ECC. By adopting modern technologies and innovative approaches, it helps businesses adapt to changing market dynamics. For businesses, transitioning to SAP S/4HANA means significant optimization and increased efficiency in business processes. 

Mert Bengü

SAP SD Consultant at Melasoft GmbH


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