Be aware of SAP ERP’s upcoming end of mainstream maintenance and take action now

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Written by Bert Vanstechelman in News


As SAP has been communicating extensively for a while now, their support for SAP ERP runs until 31 December 2027, followed by an optional extended maintenance period that ends on 31 December 2030. However, ERP users should be aware that the devil is in the detail: the extended maintenance period only applies to the three latest enhancement packages 6, 7 and 8 of SAP ERP 6.0. This implies that support for any of the lower version enhancement packages and SAP ERP itself will effectively be discontinued on 31 December 2025. Expertum explains the options to keep your business running smoothly.

End of maintenance

What are your options to stay in maintenance?

As of 1 January 2026, only customer-specific maintenance will be available at an extra cost. It is important to know that as soon as any SAP release reaches customer-specific maintenance, all kinds of legal changes, corrections, support packages and technology updates are no longer available. However, in today’s 24/7 economy, businesses require data to be available anywhere, anytime, from any device. In an interconnected world, SAP systems need to be able to communicate with other SAP and non-SAP systems, internally and externally. To keep running your SAP system on customer-specific maintenance is not something we recommend. As modifications to legal changes and security updates are no longer available, your system will become increasingly vulnerable.

Part of SAP's strategy is that new functionalities will only be made available for SAP S/4HANA. As such, transitioning to SAP S/4HANA is the only sensible option. Most companies implement SAP S/4HANA not because of the 2027 end of support for SAP ERP, but to make innovations available to business. Upgrading to the latest enhancement package of SAP ERP is an alternative but should not be considered. Although there is less impact, compared to a conversion to SAP S/4HANA, upgrade projects can take several months, up to a year depending of the complexity of the configuration, the amount of users, the number of interfaces and the size of the system. As the end data for SAP ERP is December 31, 2027, we strongly recommend you to start your transition to SAP S/4HANA. Last but not least, SAP R/3 was released in 1992 and although many features have been added since its initial release, the same data model and user interface are still in place. The question you should ask yourself: Do you want to run your business on a software which was built more then 25 years ago?

How can we help?

We provide a number of Study Packages that will empower you with valuable insights on where you find yourself in the SAP S/4HANA transition roadmap. Our SAP S/4HANA Ready Pack is the perfect jumpstart when you are currently running on SAP ERP and need a clear understanding of what SAP S/4HANA would mean from a holistic point of view. Our SAP S/4HANA Value Pack is an extension and provides an end-to-end review of your business processes, making it more tangible from a business, functional and technical perspective. Read all about it here.

Expertum SAP S/4HANA Study Packages

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About the author

Photo of Bert Vanstechelman
Bert Vanstechelman

Bert Vanstechelman is Chief Executive Officer at Expertum. He has more than 25 years of experience in SAP technical consulting, covering countless SAP versions in combination with all kinds of databases and operating systems supported by SAP. Bert specializes in platform migrations, SAP release upgrades, and SAP HANA conversions.

Read more articles by Bert Vanstechelman

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