Aramco: A step ahead in Digital Transformation with SAP S/4HANA
Platform exploits RAM-based computing capabilities while enhancing user experience and providing expanded features for business.
In June, the SAP Finance & Logistics (PRC) system was migrated to SAP’s latest generation technology, S/4HANA, involving the participation of over 1,200 employees worldwide.
“As of today, Aramco is the largest S/4HANA installation in the region and in the oil and gas industry globally, which proves how the company continues to be a trendsetter in the early adoption of technologies,” said Yousef A. Al-Ulyan, vice president of Information Technology.
Two decades ago, Aramco transformed how it ran its businesses and operations by executing one of the largest Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) implementations worldwide. The journey to migrate Aramco’s core business applications from the mainframe computers to SAP ERP began back in 1997, including the Human Resources, Finance and Logistics, and Hydrocarbon Management applications. Since that time, the ERP systems have increased to 13 systems that support more than 280 applications used corporatewide.
The ERP Transformation will help us to achieve the highest level of maturity in digital transformation and realize the company’s ambitious vision to be the world’s leading digitalized energy corporation.
— Nabil A. Al-Nuaim,
vice president of Digital Transformation
In 2019, Aramco embarked on a Corporate Digital Transformation program for its core functions companywide. To keep pace with the demand for the latest digital technologies and support the digitalization initiative, it was imperative that the ERP systems supporting the company’s core business were upgraded to the latest technologies. Therefore, the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Transformation was born. By December 2023, all ERP systems will be migrated to S/4HANA and the Cloud.
“The migration will enable key solutions for Finance, such as, Global Tax Management,” said Salah Al-Hareky, controller.
“Powerful insights are offered by the new system in multiple business areas of supply chain, such as supplier performance management, inventory, and warehouses,” said Mohammad A. Al Shammary, vice president of Procurement and Supply Chain Management.
What is S/4HANA?
SAP S/4HANA is the fourth generation of SAP’s ERP platform, which exploits “in-memory” (i.e., RAM-based) computing capabilities of the SAP HANA database while at the same time leveraging SAP’s Fiori user experience, and provides new functional capabilities for the business. S/4HANA has a hybrid transactional/analytical processing (HTAP) architecture, which means it can perform analytics on “live” transaction data in real-time without the need for a separate data warehouse. The new platform provides new technologies in the areas of mobility, machine learning, advanced analytics and the Internet-of-Things.
Learning and support
Multiple learning resources will be available to all users, including the ShareK website, e-Learning courses, and an advanced user assistance tool available online within the ERP systems. Moreover, further support will be available through the IT Help Desk.
“The ERP Transformation will help us to achieve the highest level of maturity in digital transformation and realize the company’s ambitious vision to be the world’s leading digitalized energy corporation,” said Nabil A. Al-Nuaim, vice president of Digital Transformation.
Some key features include:
• Faster system performance due to the next-generation “in-memory” technology
• Mobile-enabled and provides a consistent look and feel across multiple devices
• Embedded real-time analytics and insights for faster decision making
• New features, such as document flow, enterprise search, and on-screen user assistance
• New innovative business solutions for selected organizations and processes.
What is SAP Fiori?
SAP Fiori is the name of the new user interface that replaces the classical SAP Graphical User Interface (GUI). The SAP Fiori applications will have analytical tiles with key performance indicators and multidimensional reporting, along with the intelligent SAP Fiori search engine (Enterprise Search) that makes SAP similar to the Google Search engine.
“The launch of S/4HANA delivers exciting opportunities for the world of maintenance, reliability and asset management. The new SAP Fiori user experience will enable our end-users to navigate, examine, and report information with ease for accurate and prompt decision making,” said Fahad M. Al-AbdulKareem, executive director of Industrial Services.
Interesting facts about the ERP Transformation
• The number of on-premise SAP ERP systems in Aramco will be consolidated from 13 to six
• The numbers of system interfaces will be optimized from 6,000+ to 4,500
• The project target is to reduce the level of customization in our ERP landscape by 15%
• Due to the simplification of the database in S/4HANA, the software development life cycle will be reduced by 10%, resulting in a faster time-to-market for the deployment of new solutions.