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Wednesday, 03 July 2019 18:08

Moving to S/4HANA - What've you thought about MDG?

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Metaphorically speaking, if digital core of S/4HANA is the nerve centerof the enterprise then what is data?

Answer-Nerve. Nerve needed to keep business processrunning in the enterprise within and across its organs (within digital core andacross applications involved in the solution).

Good quality master data gives a solid foundation to a successfulS/4HANA implementation. Further to propel enterprise throughout the lifetime itis critical to ensure consistent, current and relevant data supply and usage.Ensuring good quality master data can prove to be a keystone habit that caninitiate a chain of positive outcomes for years to come.

If we analyze business processes running in today's enterprise (ECC) wewill find these biggest challenges among other

  1. inaccurate or inconsistent data (example - inaccurate supplier masterdata in case of Procurement and Sourcing)
  2. Lack of Data ownership and process governance - questions such as whowill manage, what data, and when
  3. Absence of data trace-ability and analytics
  4. Data not harmonized / information stored in multiple information systems

SAP MDG can help you overcome these data challenge associated with BusinessPartner, Supplier, Customer, Material and other domain specific solutions.Examples in Financials are CoA, G/L Account, Profit center, Cost Center etc.and Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) Via MDG Solution extension from Utopiaalong with SAP MDG's extensible application framework. SAP MDG act as"Single Source of Truth" for Master Data which provides centralizedgovernance to keep one version of data flowing across the enterprise. Capabilities in these data domains to author, collaborate between data ownersand achieve highest data quality by using cleansing of data are important ones.You can take advantage of master data consolidation framework from MDG whichprovides an ability to identify, match and merge records and to create bestrecord. Mass processing functionality helps you in handling bulk changes inmuch simpler and efficient way.

Inbuilt Data Replication framework (DRF) help you replicate data fromMDG to other downstream SAP or Non SAP applications. Standard out of the boxrule based workflow templates are available. Also ready to use integration withBusiness rule Framework (BRF+) helps setting up varied validation andderivation rules.

SAP NW MDM is on its way to sun set as per SAP's roadmap. NW MDM is ajava based tool and SAP MDG is a business suit component of SAP S/4HANA whichis on ABAP stack. We have observed that customers are moving from NW MDM to MDGas a preferred master data governance solution.There is no direct migration from SAP NW MDM to SAP MDG. The frameworkis completely different and there are no re-usable components between the twosolutions.

Standard data Migration approaches to be used to migrate data from NW MDM to MDG.Depending upon complexity, volume, target system etc. considerations ETL toolcan be decided. What is important here is to identify which of theseapplications are playing source system role for initial data load to MDG inyour target system landscape.

There can be different starting points for Customers who wish to use SAP MDGin their target S/4HANA system landscape. Some of these are mentioned inpicture below.

With S/4HANA, customers use Standalone Deployment or Co-deployed on S/4HANAdeployment options for SAP MDG. Each deployment option has its own advantages.A careful evaluation need to be done prior to deciding on strategy.


MDG Hub deployment:

In this deployment, the standalone S/4HANA (or Suit on HANA system) is usedfor the activation of business suite component - MDG. This refers to thecentralized HUB mode for the master data creation. This deployment is usuallypreferred option in case of heterogeneous environment where there is no singleglobal system which can be representative of the entire set of systems.

The MDG hub will be the central system as "Single Source ofTruth" where organization will have the Cleansed, harmonized and consolidatedreference data and master data from the system landscape. Pros and cons of MDGHub deployment are summarized as follows



MDG upgrade is not dependent on Global ERP upgrade

A separate HANA database and system for MDG is required

Decoupled from Global ERP system maintenance cycles

Data migration to MDG hub from source systems is required (Initial dataload at the time of implementation)

Allows fresh start with cleansed data (No prerequisite to cleanse datain downstream application first before implementing MDG)

Configurations needs to be migrated from Global ERP. Further, it isrequired to be maintained in sync (ongoing Customizing Synchronization)

Co-deployed Mode:

In co-deployed mode, MDG is activated on S/4HANA system itself. Thisoption is well suited in simple system landscape involving an S/4HANA systemand few downstream applications which receive their data from the former.S/4HANA system will have the global set of the reference data for the entirelandscape receiving data.

Co-deployment option will bring benefits of out of box reports andanalytics capabilities. The upgrade will happen hand-in-hand with S/4HANAsystem but customer can take advantages of integrated data models. Below tablegives Pros and Cons of this mode.



No separate System (Hardware) for SAP MDG required.

MDG upgrade will be dependent on S/4HANA system

No replication of master data to S/4HANA (No cost of implementation and monitoring of replication interfaces)

Additional efforts needed to cleanse and consolidate existing data

No separate HANA DB required for search & Duplicate check

No additional Data migration to MDG, since it gets data from S/4HANA

Lastly, these three important aspects you need to consider as well -

SAP MDG product versions and availability: SAP MDG is a business suite application and canbe activated on SAP S/4HANA or SAP ECC. There is a product availability matrixprovided by SAP to decide applicable version as per the current version of SAPECC or S/4HANA.

Reporting or analytics for MDG: SAP MDG in any deployment option has 2 types ofreporting associated with
  • In-built standard MDG Change Request based Analytics- This requires thestandard BI content activation within MDG system which would enableMDG Change request based analytics activated. Out of the box MDG analyticsoffer reporting based on time and status of Change Requests
  • Reporting capability based on HANA analytics - MDG reports can bedesigned and modeled using HANA Analytics. HANA Analytics requiresadditional software component.

Integration scenarios for MDG:MDG as a business suit component offers WebServices which can be consumed by the inbound interfacing system to triggerchange request in MDG. Outbound system integration - MDG offers services inform of Data Replication Framework (DRF) which uses thestandard ALE functionality of S/4HANA. It also offers outbound webservices. When MDG is on S/4HANA system it can replicate all the data to theactive table in S/4HANA system. Thereafter, the standard integration methodsof S/4HANA can be leveraged (Point-to-Pointor Middleware based).
Co-Author : Amit Patil (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)
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