Optimize Test Automation as Part of Your S/4HANA Journey

test automation

Where Test Automation and Code Analysis fits into the S/4HANA Picture

As we all know, S/4HANA projects are not only complex and long, but risky and obviously very costly. According to a SAPinsider report, most customers and partners make inquiries during their S/4HANA project, looking for solutions (test automation among them) to help them achieve their goal of completing this project successfully.

There are many products and tools that customers look for. The main ones are:

  • Impact analysis tools – Since S/4HANA projects involves significant changes to the system, businesses need to see the potential impact. Almost a third of the market focuses on these types of tools.
  • Automated deployment – To move code changes from one software environment to another, such that there is no need for manual software releases and here again approximately a third of the market searches for this type of tool.
  • Test automation and test management – This kind of project clearly involves intensive testing and to ease this process a third of the market searches for tools to simplify the process.
  • Code analysis tools and automatic code remediation tools – Most businesses have a great deal of custom code in their legacy ECC systems. They would therefore prefer to automate as much as possible, in order to have a smooth and sleek transition to S/4HANA.

Common Challenges – What do the customers say?

From talking directly with customers and partners, we know that there are many challenges, but the central ones revolve around project evaluation and risk management.

Project Magnitude

From the very beginning, it is important to understand the magnitude of the project. Equally important is understanding the scope, timing and budget for this kind of project, not to mention managing the risk throughout the project, from beginning to end.

Custom code

Custom code inevitably leads to technical debt due, that is built up over time. Many customers, for instance, have an ECC for years, even decades and over these years they have been developed, for many reasons, to address their business needs.

Over the years, most customers will not always remove or clean their unused custom code, and this eventually translates into technical debt, which adds complexity in this kind of project. In an S/4HANA project, customers will need to fix their existing technical debt as well as ensuring that their code works as it should through code analysis.

Remodeling business processes

Remodeling business processes is an integral part of an S/4HANA project, as many SAP standard processes are changed, replaced, or removed.

Many new processes are introduced, moving towards more seamless, intuitive, solutions. This includes new UIs and simpler solutions. All this requires lots of work around remodeling the business processes.

Testing

This is the final challenge – a lot of testing.

Testing is a vital aspect of this project. As part of this change, businesses must test all of the code changes, to test each of the new business processes.

Understandably, customers would prefer test automation to be part of the process as much as possible, to make it faster and smoother.

Panaya’s solution

Let’s think of it as a kind of a flying car, in the style of Back to the Future. And this flying car is powered by AI and GenAI. This is the basis of our platform and we are continuously improving it.

If we look at our solution as having two main engines, these are code automation and test automation. These align quite precisely to what customers are looking for as part of their S/4HANA journey, or for that matter, as part of any business project or ongoing changes.

Let’s take a closer look.

Our new solution for automatic code correction

This is an exciting new solution. It is in fact our third generation of automatic code correction, which means that we are incorporating all our experience, as well as understanding of customers’ code and customers’ business processes.

What does this solution include?

  1. This solution has fully automatic code fixes. Other solutions on the market are mostly only partially automatic, while our solution provides completely automatic code fixes. With our solution we reduce more than 90% of code correction efforts as part of an S/4HANA project.
  2. A major pillar is understanding and reducing the scope of the project through compatibility. This means that through code analysis, Panaya automatically identifies any code which will work as is, meaning it is compatible to S/4HANA and will immediately mark it as ready to be moved to S/4HANA. This can significantly reduce the complexity of the project and is therefore invaluable.
  3. Automatic code cleansing as a solution to technical debt. Unused custom code, uncleaned over years, leads to a great amount of technical debt. Our solution cleans the code for customers automatically as an integral part of their S/4HANA project.
  4. Submitting directly to SAP Transport. SAP is known for their tools’ complexity and to ease this, we strive to offer the simplest and most intuitive tools. Everything can be done easily with Panaya, from automatic code fixes to automatic code cleansing and scope production, and then you are able to simply submit to SAP transport, to your dev environment and then later to QA and production.
  5. Based on our deep domain expertise, we provide a fully guided project methodology embedded within the product. With our experience, we understood what will work best for customers, and which order of the project phases they should follow. This is an integral functionality in our solution, so customers can understand exactly which steps they should take, in which order and what the dependencies are.

What are the benefits of this solution?

First and foremost, we cut project cost.

By automating many parts of this project, we reduce the cost, such as automatically fixing code in order to move to S/4HANA. We reduce the total cost of ownership by removing unused redundant code that needs to be cleaned before moving to the new environment.

Risk elimination is the second benefit without a doubt. Panaya replaces manual fixes with our automatic tool that is submitted directly to transport, avoiding any human errors that may happen during manual corrections. This of course releases your ABAP developers to work on business innovation activities rather than working on code that need to be moved to S/4HANA.

A key benefit is that everything is based on the same platform. We don’t have many tools in different places that don’t necessarily connect. Once you have all your project activities on one platform, everything is simpler. As a manager, a project manager, a testing or debt manager, you can clearly see the precise status of the project, whether there are any bottlenecks and whether you are on time, on budget, on scope.

Just a few numbers for you

With these solutions we have some impressive numbers to share. For some customers we have achieved between 95%-98% code automation. All of our customers achieve over 90% automation for all of the code correction activities as part of an S/4HANA project. And you can just imagine the time, energy and budget this saves.

Interested in hearing more about test automation? Talk to us today. 

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