Data analysis is an extremely important part of the modern business world. Collecting and studying data can provide insights into a huge range of different things, including customer behavior, future trends, and business efficiency.
However, the world of data management and analysis can be complex and often confusing, especially for those unfamiliar with the practice. New techniques and tools are being developed all the time, and it’s vital that you understand what these are and how they work so that your business can take advantage. What is SAP S/4HANA? What is a HANA database? Let’s find out.
What is SAP?
SAP is a multinational software company based in Germany. The company specializes in software tools that are designed to help businesses optimize operations and improve relationships with customers.
Originally founded in 1972, SAP has established itself as an industry leader and delivers software tools to a wide range of different businesses worldwide. With a focus on innovation, SAP is driving the sector forwards and is at the forefront of emerging technology and advances in software.
What is a HANA database?
HANA, which stands for high-performance analytic appliance, is one of SAP’s most successful products. HANA is a multi-model database that takes a unique approach to how data is handled and stored within the software’s architecture.
Unlike other databases, HANA stores data within its memory, rather than on its hard drive. What this means is that data can be recalled and accessed much more efficiently, as systems can connect to memory banks more rapidly than hard drives. This also offers users more options; data can be sourced from both internal and external sources and integrated with other software tools with ease.
Additionally, HANA’s design allows businesses to easily manage huge volumes of data. By collating data into columns, data can be processed with little or no latency and analyzed in real time. The software utilizes online analytical processing, online transactional processing, and machine learning technology to make it one of the most comprehensive and feature-packed enterprise software solutions on the market today.
What is S/4HANA?
Now that we know what HANA is, let’s take a closer look at what SAP S/4HANA is, how it works, and what it can be used for.
First released in 2015, S/4HANA is a suite of enterprise resource planning software tools all powered by HANA database technology. These tools make use of modern AI and machine learning functionality to improve performance and deliver better results for users.
S/4HANA offers improved speed, efficiency, and scalability, and introduced a swathe of features that can be utilized by businesses to drive success and growth.
Some of the S/4HANA features include multi-tier storage for data from various sources, predictive analytics and machine learning, asset management functionality, compatibility with several programming languages, and high availability/disaster recovery capabilities for data and system protection.
One of the biggest benefits offered by S/4HANA is that businesses can choose to integrate it in a number of different ways, depending on what best suits their particular needs and requirements. It can be physically hosted on business premises, on a dedicated S/4HANA cloud server, on a private cloud server, or it can be integrated using a combination of all methods, with certain sections partitioned for greater privacy and security.
What is S/4HANA used for?
The S/4HANA suite contains various different software tools, and it can be used for a range of different purposes.
It can be used for financial management, with the power to optimize business accounting, planning, consolidation, and risk management. It can also be used for logistic purposes; businesses can use it for supply chain management processes, manufacturing oversight and planning, and asset management and monitoring.
Furthermore, businesses can use S/4HANA to manage sales. It can be used to monitor orders, prices, returns, delivery, and billing. Finally, S/4HANA can be used for research and development purposes, with options for portfolio management, innovation tracking, and material management.
This is an incredible range of different functions, and it will come as no surprise to learn that S/4HANA is used across a wide range of different sectors. To make things easier for businesses, SAP has segmented S/4HANA into individual industry categories, which are each customized and tailored to suit the needs of businesses within those sectors.
Some of these categories include consumer industries like fashion and retail, manufacturing industries like automobiles and defense, financial services, and public services like healthcare and education.
Migrating to an S/4HANA System
If you’re reading this and believe that S/4HANA could help take your business to the next level, it’s important to know how migrating to an S/4HANA system works.
Due to the suite’s size and complexity, moving to S/4HANA can be difficult and time-consuming. Even if you are already using SAP products, transferring data to S/4HANA requires a great deal of planning and preparation.
However, doing so can offer your business countless benefits, and the advanced data management and analysis capabilities offered by S/4HANA will give your business the boost it needs to achieve success.
Data collection and analysis are more important than ever. HANA databases power the S/4HANA suite of software solutions, which are indispensable for businesses in today’s increasingly digitally driven world.