SAP provides an array of resources to aid manufacturers with their operations, two of the most used being SAP Manufacturing Execution (ME) and SAP Manufacturing Integration and Intelligence (MII). SAP ME is a manufacturing execution system (MES) solution that focuses on the real-time execution of production orders, while SAP MII is a manufacturing integration and intelligence platform that focuses on the integration of data from different manufacturing sources. However, in December 2027, mainstream maintenance and support are ending for SAP ME and SAP MII, as SAP will encourage users to migrate to the Digital Manufacturing Cloud (DMC). Below, we provide deeper insight into SAP ME and SAP MII and explain the upcoming SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud migration.
SAP Manufacturing Systems
SAP MANUFACTURING EXECUTION (ME)
SAP ME is a comprehensive MES solution that has three key capabilities to keep in mind: centralized operations, automated data collection, and tracking and resolution. First, centralized operations provide employees with interfaces to support workflows, adapt routing materials, and manage production. Next, automated data collection records all relevant production data, like traceability and quality, monitors adherence to specifications and regulations, integrates the master data process, and more. Finally, SAP ME detects tracking and resolution by creating device history records, tracking and tracing visibility, and analyzing data to improve efficiency and reliability.
SAP ME has been a good choice for manufacturers of all sizes and industries, particularly for those with complex production processes or who need to comply with strict regulations.
SAP MANUFACTURING INTEGRATION AND INTELLIGENCE (MII)
SAP MII has two main aspects: integration and intelligence. The integration aspect links SAP ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) with plant floor applications, while the intelligence aspect provides real-time insight into manufacturing operations in a unified view. SAP MII works to optimize supply chain management with machine-to-machine connectivity and can be integrated with a wide variety of systems, enabling greater visibility into production.
SAP MII has been a good choice for manufacturers who need to integrate data from multiple sources or who want to use real-time analytics to improve their operations.
SAP DIGITAL MANUFACTURING CLOUD (DMC)
SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud (DMC) is a cloud-based manufacturing execution system. It provides a flexible, scalable solution for both discrete and process industries. SAP DMC offers similar functions to SAP ME and SAP MII but can perform more extensive analysis and reporting functions, including Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML), as well as utilize the full potential and advantages of the cloud. This is because with SAP DMC, the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) business model is being deployed, which allows AI & ML algorithms to be increasingly used. This is one reason SAP DMC represents a major step towards Industry 4.0.
DMC represents a new architecture that allows for high-availability Edge computing and leveraging “cloud-based collaboration” for information flow beyond the company’s own boundaries (customers, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), suppliers, and service providers). In SAP DMC, templates and its drag-and-drop logic builder allow for dealing with manufacturing complex logic but with less customization than was required with MII. From a reporting perspective, the architecture enables standard KPIs (key performance indicators) to be used as a basis for performance reporting.
How to Prepare for the SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud Migration
If you’re currently using SAP ME or SAP MII, it is time to start planning and executing your migration to SAP DMC – and remember, starting early is key to giving yourself enough lead time, as it’s easy to underestimate the requirements of this migration.
There are five phases to migrating from SAP ME/MII to SAP DMC:
- Pre-Migration Assessment. This includes a review of your solution requirements, both current and future, and an inventory and assessment of current MII, application code, and artifacts. You’ll also need to establish and finalize clear goals and expectations for your migration. Then, the migration tasks and estimated effort can be planned.
- Preparation Phase. This is where resources are budgeted and allocated, a target environment is created, and proof of concept workshops are performed.
- Development Phase. During this phase, the actual logic, configuration, and integration to DMC and the ERP solution are created.
- Testing and Validation Phase. At this point, you will test the system and validate roles/authorizations for all users.
- Deployment Phase. Finally, it is time to deploy the solution with the provision of go-live support, fixes, and monitoring to smoothly adapt the new software to your business processes.
SAP DMC and its capabilities are rapidly evolving, so it’s important for organizations to make sure they have a good understanding of the product roadmap as the project moves along. Be sure to think about managing the scope of your project, too, as there are many new opportunities available with SAP DMC. While it’s beneficial to be thinking ahead toward a future vision for your organization, it is also wise to not move too quickly.
For more guidance on preparing for the migration, connect with one of our SAP experts today.
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