You may be asking yourself – why are they bringing up ECC, it’s old technology. Well, if you are one of the 240 million business users using ECC currently, you still may be using it for a while. And while everyone else is moving on to Hana, a great many companies are sticking with the tried and true ECC for another 5-7 years. See, SAP has moved the support window for ECC out to 2030 and many companies don’t want to take on the cost and effort to upgrade when they don’t have to. In fact, with a 7 year horizon, some ECC customers are adding modules – and we can talk about that later.

So, it comes down to, where do I find experienced ECC support without it costing me an arm and a leg. When it comes to creating innovative, data-driven changes within an organization, SAP support matters. This cloud-based solution offers a multitude of improvements for processes for 240 million business users around the world. If yours is one of them, you need professional and reliable SAP support to maximize the benefits no matter what your targets.

What Is SAP ERP Central Component?

Also called SAP ECC, the SAP enterprise resource planning (ERP) system makes it possible for any business to integrate its data in the most effective ways possible. The explanation is quite simple. Whatever digital information is gathered by one part of your operations, it can be gathered and combined in the most beneficial ways possible for other departments. Best of all, this occurs in real time, so you never have to wait for updates or automatic changes that increase efficiency and outcomes across the board.

One common practical application of SAP ECC involves managing inventory based on sales data. If a product sells, the inventory numbers change immediately. This is one of the most basic examples of how these systems can help. Managers and other responsible parties therefore get a unified view of what is happening within the company and to make informed decisions more easily. Also, since the decisions are developed with accurate and up-to-date data in mind, they tend to have better outcomes.

Who Uses SAP ECC?

Large corporations and medium-sized companies alike use the SAP Business Suite and specifically the ERP central component for a variety of reasons. It does not target any specific industries or niches. Instead, organizations focused on medical goods and pharmaceuticals, industrial parts and materials, chemicals, and consumer goods can all benefit. Most design their specific use models with various modules or components that focus on individual tasks necessary for their company operations. For example, they may choose a supply chain management module for one designed for customer relationship management alone.

    Different Parts of the SAP Product Landscape

    Organizations that want the best results for their specific needs should understand the differences between SAP ECC, HANA, SAP ERP, and independent modules. The abbreviations exist in different hierarchies and are used to describe total or parts of that total.

    SAP ERP is the umbrella term for the entire list of the ERP products. This includes HANA, Business By Design, Business One, and ECC. HANA is an in-memory database that can run the ECC application suite. SAP also offers S/4HANA, which is the successor to SAP ECC. Although it is newer and offers additional benefits, many organizations choose not to migrate to this new option yet. It would include a lot of effort, time, and potential complexity. Instead of just upgrading certain existing systems, it completely rewrites how ECC takes advantage of the HANA database.

    Companies who want to make the switch to this new system need help from skilled professionals who are up to date with the latest developments in the SAP product landscape. However, if SAP ECC currently satisfies your needs, there is no true reason to launch the complex migration process immediately. Getting SAP support for existing tech use and methods is quite common for organizations who use these products.

    SAP ECC Modules or Components

    Another thing important to understand when using the SAP product suite is that they change the terminology from module to component when describing the same things. This occurred when the predecessor to ECC, which was called R/3, was pushed out of common use. Today’s components integrate fully with each other and are often used in various configurations to offer the best solutions to individual organizations. Some people still call them modules, so it helps to understand both terms in order to facilitate clear communication.

    Modules and components are developed independently and often by in-house tech teams who want to manage a certain business process or streamline data use and decision-making. ECC itself has 10 core components focused on functionality and to tech-specific ones.

    The two ECC database technical components are called ABAP and Netweaver. The first manages the programming behind development objects for specific organizations, and the second manages authorization and database user roles. These two make it possible for all the other components to work as intended.

    SP FICO – Finance Modules

    FICO stands for finance and controlling, which are two modules that usually go together. They handle accounting tasks and budgetary planning and decision-making. When all the financial information is easily accessible from one place, it is much easier to make plans going forward.

    SD – Sales and Distribution

    This module handles product or service sales both to wholesalers and retail consumers. Other responsibilities include issuing and managing credit accounts, ongoing billing, and returns and refunds. Tech teams can configure it effectively to serve many different types of companies who focus on various sale models.

    MM – Materials Management

    Handle procurement of parts, materials, and services from a variety of vendors with this SAP module. It is useful with inventory data, transfers between plants or warehouses, and keeps track of receipts at the same time.

    PP – Production Planning

    As the name implies, this allows for data-driven product manufacturing decisions to keep up with demand and sales without overages and waste. Its often an essential tool for handling supply chain organization. Smart production schedules and high agility helps improve profitability through data use.

    QM – Quality Management

    This module provides tools for quality planning, quality control, and quality assurance. It integrates with other parts focused on production, purchasing, sales, and equipment repairs and maintenance records.

    PM – Plant Maintenance

    The SAP PM module is a part of the ERP system that helps organizations plan, execute, and track maintenance and repair activities. It covers all aspects of plant locations including boiler rooms, freezers and chillers, and specific machine operations. The module helps improve equipment uptime and optimize maintenance costs by fast detection of issues that minimize interruptions.

    CS – Customer Service

    This a customer service module that enables organizations to manage customer interactions. It primarily deals with maintenance of customer equipment. CS module provides a central repository for customer data and enables organizations to provide consistent, efficient, and effective services.

    PS – Project System

    The SAP PS module is a software application that helps organizations in the planning and execution of projects. It enables project managers to create and manage project plans, track project progress, and communicate with stakeholders. The module also provides tools for resource management, cost management, and quality management.

    HCM – Human Capital Management

    All human resources (HR) functions exist within the SAP HCM module. These include scheduling, time management, PTO and vacation hours, payroll, and similar tasks. Depending on the specific needs of the company, it can also be used for career development and training opportunities, workplace safety, and specific needs like travel allowances for business trips.

    Implementing SAP ECC

    Although SAP currently focuses more on S/4HANA use, many organizations still value SAP ECC instead. With a diverse range of modules and great functionality, it can be a difficult decision to switch to the newer system. Doing so represents a huge undertaking that may disrupt operations for a period of time. ECC support still exists directly from SAP and will continue to do so until 2030. Tech companies like ours who offer implementation, integration, and maintenance services for SAP products continue to offer real benefits for organizational operations and growth.

    If you need help with your SAP ECC modules, contact FirstCall Consulting today. Learn how we can improve operations and data-driven decision-making across your organization.

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