SAP recently startled its loyal followers with the news that the maintenance period for the currently widespread tools mentioned above will end in 2027 at the latest. In some cases, further technological developments have already been stopped. Even if accounting departments can currently serve their customers - primarily controlling and the CFO - with satisfactory speed and appropriate accuracy, companies preparing consolidated financial statements should use the coming period to orient themselves and make the appropriate entries on the financial roadmap.
Of course, the bar is also raised in terms of content. The needs of corporate management in terms of depth of analysis, real-time access, predictiveness, fast close (known as "continuous accounting" in the SAP vernacular) and transparency/compliance are addressed more clearly than before. Due to the interface-free transfer of financial data from ERP to financial statement preparation, Group Reporting is fundamentally interesting for every S/4HANA Finance customer who is committed to breaking down departmental silos with a platform strategy.
In the future, SAP will also win SMEs (medium-sized enterprises) as customers in the area of EPM due to the finance process orientation made possible by the Universal Journal. The previous belief in the market that SAP EPM tools are geared towards large corporations can no longer be maintained with SAP Group Reporting. The consistency of the finance processes from ERP, financial close, group closing, FP&A and reporting (through to legal financial reporting) is also attractive for SMEs, especially as the Total Costs of Ownership (TCO) should fall (no additional third-party tools, no interfacing, reduction of manual activities) and the operating mode can also be in the cloud.