A Brief Overview on SAP S/4HANA Finance

Category: SAP S/4HANA Finance Posted:Oct 16, 2020 By: Alvera Anto

A Brief Overview on SAP S/4HANA Finance

SAP S/4HANA Financials is SAP’s front runner financial solution and successor of SAP ERP Financials. Initially released in 2014, it boasts several process improvements for the financial world, including the introduction of a single source financial truth, real-time financial close, and predictive accounting. It was established to run off the SAP HANA system and largely uses the SAP Fiori user interface.

Table of Contents

  1. History of SAP S/4HANA Finance
  2. SAP S/4HANA Financing Innovations
  • Changes from SAP ERP Financials
  • Functions Introduced in SAP S/4HANA
  1. SAP S/4HANA Financing Release Options
  • On-Premise
  • Cloud
  • Two-Tier (Hybrid).
  1. SAP S/4HANA Financing Migration Options.
  • Greenfield.
  • Brownfield.
  • Central Financing.
  1. SAP S/4HANA Money Release Cycle.

History of SAP S/4HANA Financing

Initially called SAP Simple Finance, the solution was launched at the 2014 SAPPHIRE NOW modern technology meeting in Orlando, Florida. 9 months later, it would certainly undergo a name change to SAP S/4HANA Finance when SAP introduced its new SAP S/4HANA enterprise resource planning platform, broken down into the lines of business such as financing, supply chain, sales, and a lot more.

Ingenious features of the first launch of SAP S/4HANA Financing included the Universal Journal that offered a single space to keep both financial and management accounting documents with relevant data. This resulted in better coverage, easier access to KPIs used by managers, and cockpits customized to specific end-users to help them make more informed decisions.

Ever since SAP has continually built on the foundation of SAP S/4HANA Finance. Significant yearly releases have added new, innovative functionality to the solution, and since 2019, SAP S/4HANA’s most recent functions include enhanced finance closing ability, central payables and receivables, predictive accounting, and more embedded analytics.

Checkout the Article- A Deeper Analysis of SAP S/4HANA Simple Finance

SAP S/4HANA Financials Innovations

Central to the SAP S/4HANA Financials solution unique selling point is the process and reporting improvements available thanks to SAP HANA. While some of these were simply processing speed upgrades– the SAP HANA database boasts analytics and reporting abilities that are 1800x faster than SAP ERP– many were new to SAP S/4HANA Financing. This includes things like the Universal Journal, centralized processing, data drill-down, and the ability to integrate several ERPs into one location for data collection.

Universal Journal Summary

Changes from SAP ERP Financials

SAP was clear from the beginning that “simple” in SAP S/4HANA Financing’s first version was diverse. Those using a new solution would locate not only automated, recent financial management, but a structured data model and lightweight architecture.

Initial FI-CO functionality improved on the existing ERP. This included upgraded financial planning and evaluation, accounting and financial close, treasury and financial risk management, joint finance operations, and enterprise risk and compliance management.

Attributes Presented in SAP S/4HANA

SAP S/4HANA Financing introduced to the financial world the tangibility of a single source of truth– that is, an aggregated total of all financial data across departments, journals, and continents. This was enabled by SAP HANA‘s ability to store large amounts of data in-memory and to create analytics reports at a moment’s notification for any user with gain access to that desired it. This offered immediate value to accountants taking a look at the existing and previous activity, project managers running complex projects on a limited budget, and coordinators looking to use previous and existing numbers to forecast future expectations.

SAP S/4HANA Finance Implementation Options

There are several avenues where SAP S/4HANA Financing can be deployed. Below’s a quick summary of each.


An on-premise deployment incorporates typical in-house IT infrastructure models. This deployment model describes an instance of SAP S/4HANA Financing that is physically hosted on company property.


There are 2 cloud options for SAP S/4HANA Financing deployment, both of which entail using external cloud integration. In a public cloud deployment, a business leases a siloed piece of server space shared with other customers running SAP S/4HANA. In a personal cloud implementation, a company rents a unique server to run SAP S/4HANA. In both instances, the application is possessed by the client yet all management of the technical infrastructure is outsourced.

Two-Tier (Hybrid)

In a two-tier or hybrid release, both on-premise and cloud deployments are used. This might be done for a number of factors, including checking the expediency of both circumstances or holding an on-premise implementation at the headquarters while using a cloud implementation in a satellite office.

SAP S/4HANA Financing Migration Options

Relying on a company’s unique business demands, one of the following 3 migration options will make the most sense. These can be performed in house or with the use of third-party consultants.


In a greenfield implementation, the SAP S/4HANA platform is built from scratch and initially contains no data. This is the implementation of all new SAP clients undertake. Some existing SAP clients may choose to perform a greenfield implementation if they have an over-customized, traditional, SAP ERP Financials platform.


In a brownfield implementation, an existing SAP ERP Financials platform is converted into an SAP S/4HANA Financials system. This involves the movement of financial data from the traditional system to SAP S/4HANA. Companies that did not heavily tailor their legacy system might be drawn to this technique instead of starting from scratch.

Checkout the Article- What makes SAP Simple Finance a High ROI Investment?

Central Financing

In a Central Financing implementation, multifaceted financial systems in SAP ERP are connected to a single Central Financing system. This mimics the single resource of fact that SAP S/4HANA Finance offers and enables the reporting and analytics benefit of SAP S/4HANA Financials to be used on a data.

SAP S/4HANA Financing Release Cycle

SAP S/4HANA Finance obtains numerous updates each year. Cloud-deployed instances will receive quarterly updates, while on-premise deployments are updated once, usually in September.

The naming conventions for SAP S/4HANA releases follow this four-digit format: year/month. As an example, the 1909 launch of SAP S/4HANA refers to the release that came out in the year 2019 (19 ), the month of September (09 ).

Closing Notes

Now, if you’re willing to learn from the best, then you’re in the right place. At ZaranTech, we offer self-paced online training SAP S/4HANA Financials conducted by experienced industry experts. Browse through our course page for details.

I hope that by now you have had an overview of SAP S/4 HANA Finance. Before you enroll in ZaranTech’s certification course on SAP S/4 HANA Finance, do check out the S4 HANA Finance demo:

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