How to find the SAP S/4HANA service provider that best suits your needs


Increasing numbers of enterprises are making the move to SAP S/4HANA. But the Gartner® report, “Critical Capabilities for SAP S/4HANA Application Services, Worldwide,” notes “The cost of implementation, together with resource attrition and talent shortages, presents challenges for clients as they engage providers for S/4HANA seeking assessment, migration, transformation, and support services.”

As a result, procurement professionals need to carefully assess the capabilities of SAP S/4HANA service providers to make sure they choose one with the skills and expertise to meet the specific needs of the organization. Selecting a provider that has strengths complementing those of your team can go a long way to determining whether implementation will achieve its objectives.

Looking beyond the technical capability

The technical capability of service providers matters, but outcomes are the most important. Ideally, Gartner says, you should “consider providers with intellectual property (IP) such as tools, accelerators, and industry solutions that will drive your desired outcomes.”

Solid SAP S/4HANA skills are a key requirement for any service provider, but it is critical to look at other capabilities that can help ensure a successful implementation. These include change management, process optimization, and specializations in relevant industry verticals.

Consideration should also be given to providers who are willing to sign contracts based on outcomes, Gartner says, and you should “potentially leverage commercial models that involve provider revenue at risk.”

Finding the right fit

Each major SAP S/4HANA service provider has a different set of capabilities. Gartner has extensively researched 20 service providers who meet the criteria for Gartner’s “Magic Quadrant for SAP S/4HANA Services, Worldwide”, and assessed how each one performs in relevant use cases. Its Critical Capabilities report covers four key use cases:

  • Assessment and Planning Services – In the Gartner report, assessment and planning services include both business process and technical impact assessments, as well as consulting, proofs of concept, a roadmap, and business case development. These can apply to either a greenfield SAP S/4HANA installation or migration from a legacy platform to SAP S/4HANA.
  • Business Transformation Services – These services rely on SAP S/4HANA to transform business functions and processes, with the goal of creating better business value. Capabilities assessed in the report include technology enablement, industry, and process expertise, and organizational change and management.
  • Application Management and Evolution Services – This includes ongoing management services for SAP S/4HANA applications as part of a multi-year contract. Services covered include application development, implementation, integration, testing, maintenance and support, application monitoring, job scheduling, backup and restoration, web services, and database activities.
  • Technical Migration Services – This encompasses project-based SAP S/4HANA deployments without a transformation focus. Services involved include database migration, adapting data models to the SAP S/4HANA data model, and replacing program code.

The Gartner report helps guide you to the best-suited service provider

Transitioning to an SAP S/4HANA environment is a complex undertaking. It has the potential to deliver greater efficiency and flexibility, but only if the implementation is handled correctly. Finding a service provider with the right expertise to complement your internal team will help ensure your SAP S/4HANA project goes as smoothly as possible.

Read the full Gartner report for detailed insights to determine the assessment, migration, transformation, and support services capabilities of 20 SAP S/4HANA service providers.

Download: “Critical Capabilities for SAP S/4HANA Application Services, Worldwide”.

Gartner, Critical Capabilities for SAP S/4HANA Application Services, Worldwide,
By Analysts: Peter Adamo, Fabio Di Capua, Luis Pinto, Jaideep Thyagarajan, Allan Wilkins ,
27 June 2022

Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product, or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner’s research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.

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Sabine Soellheim Sabine is Global Director of SAP Solutions at SUSE, the world's largest independent open-source company. She has 15 years of experience in collaborating with SAP and the SAP partner ecosystem to uncover co-innovation opportunities and accelerate growth. Sabine lead GTM initiatives that generate double-digit lead and revenue growth as well as market leadership.