The Making of a Successful SAP implementationWhether you’re applying a minor upgrade, migrating to the cloud, or rebuilding your landscape from the ground up, your SAP implementation can be a major milestone for your business. Get it right, and your whole company can benefit from a faster, smarter and more secure landscape. Get it wrong, and your company can be sandbagged for years, with costly performance issues, security vulnerabilities, and future remediation projects. Here are four things you need to get it right the first time around.


Strong SAP Basis Support — Kubota Engine America

SAP needs continuous oversight, regular maintenance and a quick response when something goes wrong. You need Basis experts who can deftly perform post go-live tuning from your new SAP implementation, handle the daily operation of your landscape, and keep you informed of needed upgrades before your system starts to slow down. Whether this is just a regular background task that keeps your SAP landscape going, or a source of uncontrolled cost and frequent disruption depends on your Basis support.


Kubota Engine America struggled with ongoing Basis issues due to frequent turnover. As their managed services vendor had consultants leave, they’d bring in new Basis admins who didn’t understand Kubota’s landscape, leading to rising costs and other issues. Kubota initially contacted Symmetry as a temporary measure to handle Basis while they looked for a new, in-house consultant, but the one they found left quickly, leading to the same issue.


Outsourcing SAP Basis managed services to Symmetry helped Kubota control costs and maintain service continuity. Rather than having to depend on a single, overworked Basis expert, they had access to a complete team that knew their landscape inside and out. That meant around-the-clock supervision (including weekends), and immediate response to any issues in the landscape.


IT Managed Services With Tactical Insight

A partner doesn’t go into your SAP implementation knowing everything about your landscape. There can be custom code, inefficient or inconsistent data management and other issues that they’ll discover as the project continues. Successful SAP project management requires a partner who is able to use their experience and tactical knowhow to study your landscape in depth, and use what they learn to provide an optimal outcome.


Carlisle Construction Materials understood the importance of strategy going into the upgrade. As a fast-growing, diversified manufacturer and supplier in residential and commercial construction, Carlisle had been dealing with a growing volume of data, which was starting to overwhelm their IT resources. Symmetry provided an SAP HANA Proof of Concept Lab to demo the upgrade, allowing Carlisle to test drive their new landscape, and helping Symmetry and Carlisle work together to refine the upgrade strategy and goals.


As Symmetry began the first phase of migration, however, we discovered that Carlisle’s database needed to be cleaned up. This is a common issue among many established companies, which have been around since before modern data management practices were developed. Drawing on our deep knowledge of SAP HANA, Symmetry was able to assist Carlisle by consolidating the data, creating a leaner, more efficient landscape.


Strategic SAP Project Management — Karma Automotive

One of the biggest governance challenges enterprises currently face is developing a strategic outlook on IT. Whether companies are performing a transformative SAP migration or a minor upgrade, the focus is usually on ensuring the process goes smoothly. In some cases, like in a multi-stage upgrade, companies do plan out their ongoing strategy for a year or more in advance, but they rarely think beyond the end of the project. Future upgrades will most likely be treated as one-offs, and looked at in isolation.


There are good reasons for this. Just planning an SAP implementation to serve the company effectively in the short-to-medium term is an extremely complex task. Many companies have ongoing problems with their landscape and governance, so just choosing an effective managed services model, finding the right cloud hosting provider, and building a system that meets KPIs can be a major accomplishment. Additionally, technology continues to advance at an accelerating rate. SAP does a good job road mapping upgrades and new products, but with the rapid development of third-party offerings and integrations, it can be hard to plot out your ongoing technology policy — particularly if your company is growing or changing rapidly.


But there’s a difference between planning out your IT future in detail, and making sure that you’ll be ready for the future when it comes. While you may not be able to anticipate exactly how your tech stack will have to change and evolve, you can make sure you’ll be positioned to make those changes smoothly when the time comes, with as little disruption as possible, with the help of the right provider.


As a luxury hybrid car manufacturer, Karma Automotive understood the importance of taking a strategic approach to tech better than most. The automotive industry in general has struggled to adapt to shorter tech cycles and demanding consumers, but nowhere is this more evident than in the cutting-edge luxury hybrid industry. Karma needed a system that could continuously meet rapidly evolving consumer demand, while providing a seamless buying experience for some of the most exacting clients in any industry, and they needed it to be able to scale effortlessly with minimal disruption as the company grew.


Symmetry was able to meet these needs, by building them a rapidly scalable S/4HANA cloud landscape. We shattered the current 1 TB virtualization limits, creating an SAP implementation capable of scaling up to 12 TB in minutes. This is backed up by world-class SAP Basis and SAP security support, and bulletproof disaster recovery. Whatever the future brings, their flexible landscape will be able to quickly adapt to face it.


SAP Security and Compliance Expertise — Nyrstar

Modern ERP has done great things for enterprises, but for many enterprises, security and compliance are two areas where modern tech hasn’t lived up to its promise. Companies struggle to meet increasingly stringent auditor demands and rapidly evolving IT security threats, without the resources to cope.


Your SAP implementation can mark a new beginning for security and compliance, providing real time monitoring, and streamlined compliance processes that replace time-consuming tasks like hunting for approvals and manually sampling and reviewing transactions with automated processes. However, these benefits aren’t automatic. You need a provider who treats security and compliance as a priority, with the skillset, software and resources to build and maintain controls.


In 2011, Nyrstar was struggling with compliance issues you probably recognize. Headquartered in Zurich, the integrated mining and metals enterprise was operating a range of mining and smelting operations across multiple continents. As a rapidly growing company, however, Nyrstar’s compliance processes were not adequate. They lacked Segregation of Duties (SOD) controls, and their manual compliance efforts were wasting time and resources, with disappointing results.


With their partner, Xtensional, Nyrstar implemented ControlPanelGRC Emergency Access Management, a process that took only a few days, with a single two-hour webinar to get their team up to speed. They were able to remediate key SOD challenges surprisingly easily, and decided to add two other ControlPanelGRC SAP Access Control modules — the Risk Analyzer and Usage Analyzer. ROI was dramatic quick and dramatic. The new modules took only three days to add, and within just 4 months, Nyrstar was able to cut SOD conflicts by 84%.


World-Class Companies Deserve World-Class SAP Support

Your SAP landscape is more than a tool — it’s the nervous system of your business. It processes and stores transactions, provides actionable insight, and keeps all the pieces of your company working in harmony like a single organism. The right partner can ensure your SAP implementation has the reliability, security and raw brainpower to keep your business ahead of the rest.


Contact us to learn how Symmetry can help.

About Dave Hall, Director of Professional Services

Dave Hall is the Director of Professional Services at Symmetry where he is responsible for on-boarding and managing many of Symmetry’s key and most complex Clients. Dave has been in the information technology business for over 30 years - managing teams responsible for everything from international systems implementations, SAP data center migrations and Basis managed services. Dave leverages his diverse experience to provide superior customer service to Symmetry Clients from the initial on-boarding process through ongoing steady state managed services.