Speed Up Your SAP Data Migration By Choosing The Right Migration Tool
From the point of view of customer satisfaction, SAP is emerging day-by-day and becoming more secure, robust and user-friendly. ERP Customers are migrating to latest evaluations to speed up their business by simplifying the enterprise operations, making them easy and user-friendly.
The factors motivating the enterprise industries to migrate to SAP systems are:
- More secure
- Rich User Interface
- High performance
- Easy reporting and analysis on data
- Integration among all business units
- In-memory database
To implement SAP software for an ERP Industry, we have multiple project implementation methodologies. In this article we will see how to implement data migration and the techniques involved in data processing, which are most important and critical aspects of project implementation.
What is Data Migration?
The successful SAP Implementation depends on data migration which refers to the process of carrying data from legacy systems to SAP system in a more secure way. This enables the new ERP system to be more robust and flexible in order to perform organizational operations.
Extraction of Data
The first phase in implementation of data migration is to extract data from legacy system to SAP system. In order to finalize the process, further discussions are required with end users and super users to find the gaps/issues in the current system, such as the business operations and the data behind those operations that we need to carry to SAP system.
- Identifying the right data.
- Mapping from source (legacy system) to target system and address all the gaps using from source to target using business rules.
- Preparing the unstructured data into a structured way and make it possible to extract.
- Staging area environment is required to keep all the data that is extracted and finalized, or an ETL tool for extraction of data from legacy system to SAP system.
Transformation of Data
Transformation occurs after the data extraction process is completed and transformed according to the target system (SAP format). This process is time consuming, costly and needs to be carried out with outmost care.
If the transformation phase is not carried out properly, the result of the Target system implementation will be unsuccessful.
- Identifying data types of target system and formatting the data according to data types.
- Identifying conversion programs/ tools to apply the transformation on extracted data and re-structured data.
Loading of Data
The final phase of data migration is loading the well cleansed and transformed data into SAP. SAP has provided a wide range of tools to load data.
The tool that we use to load the data is industry-specific and depends on the volume of data and Load process.
Tools available from SAP to load data
Legacy System Migration Workbench (LSMW), Batch Data Communication (BDC), Business Object Data Services (BODS) and EMIGALL (to migrate utilities industry) are some of the tools available to load data from SAP.
Legacy System Migration Workbench (LSMW)
The first choice that we can recommend to migrate any master or transaction data of SAP standard business objects is LSMW. The LSMW technology is a SAP in-built technology which can do mass processing of data loading into SAP with less cost and in an easy manner. All that is required to perform LSMW is legacy system data in the form of Excel or Text file. It requires less coding knowledge and is also easy to implement. We can set conversion rules to load the data according to target system.
- It is an SAP in-built tool used for migration of wide range of SAP standard business objects (Material master data, Vendor master data, Customer master, Sales orders etc.), with best user friendly interface.
- It contains different data import technologies such as BAPI, IDoc, Batch Input, and Direct Input.
- Easy to apply conversion rules (constants and rules for data translations).
Batch Data Communication (BDC)
When we have data that needs to be loaded into SAP Standard Objects that requires large number of data validations and contains high volumes of data, it is ideal to choose BDC. The main disadvantage of BDC is that it requires ABAP Knowledge in order to be implemented.
- It is mainly used for the complex SAP Business Standard Application. We can handle errors easily compared to LSMW.
- BDC is developer-friendly.
- We can increase the accuracy by using synchronous and asynchronous mechanisms.
- It would be preferable to go with BDC during data migration when standard business applications have complex scenarios consisting of custom fields.
The above mentioned SAP Tools cannot extract data from source system, as they are preferred when the legacy system data extracts are provided in the form of Excel or Note Pad Files. As we have the prior disadvantage of above two methods, we need an extraction tool in order to get the data from source system, which increases the resource, time and cost efforts of a project.
Hence, SAP thus came up with a new tool which can perform extraction, transformation and loading named as SAP Data Services.
SAP Data Services
SAP Data Services is recommended for all large-scale industries whose legacy system consists of large number of different data sources.
- It can access data from any source, of any size and is able to perform data integration, quality and cleansing.
- It has real time data change capture techniques.
- Tight integration with SAP Business Applications.
- User-friendly experience.
SAP also provides industry specific migration tools such as EMIGALL. For the migration of SAP Utilities module, it would be preferable to use EMIGALL as the tool tightly integrates with the Utilities Module.
- EMIGALL is a migration tool used only for Utilities industry for the customers who want to migrate from Non-SAP to SAP systems.
- The tool provides individual objects for all the master and transactional business applications.
- We can increase the performance by parallel processing and enhance EMIGALL objects for all the customization changes in Utilities business applications.
- Easy-to-build and apply conversion and transformation rules.
The poor quality of data reduces the success rate of business operations. All that needs to be done is approaching the right migration tool in all implementation projects to improve the quality and make it available for all business operations based on the industry size and its operations.
Contact for further details
Suneel Kumar UGGINA
Technology Specialist – ERP SAP Development