Timothy de Windt

Migrate your data with SAP Data Migration Cockpit

Increasingly demanding customers, rapid technological changes, and increased business competition are challenges that several companies are facing, prompting the need for digital transformation. These challenges can be overcome by replacing out-of-date legacy ERP systems with modern, cloud-based ERPs like SAP S/4HANA. Some business benefits of SAP S/4HANA include optimized processes, faster real-time analytics for better insights and a simplified user interface. What are some of the possibilities for migrating data to S/4HANA from legacy SAP systems like R/3?

SAP Data Migration Cockpit

Migrating data into SAP S/4HANA can be done in several ways. These methods include standard SAP tools or via third party applications like Winshuttle. The S/4 HANA Migration Cockpit is an in-SAP Fiori-based tool which is used to migrate master data and transactional data and is also seen as the successor of ECC’s Legacy Systems Migration Workbench (LSMW). The Migration Cockpit is a more user-friendly migration approach that can also be used by business users in some cases.

The SAP Data Migration Cockpit process

When creating a new data migration project, you have the option of Migrating directly from an ERP SAP system (only for On-Premise) or using Staging Tables.

The first step in the Migration Cockpit process is to select the migration objects that are relevant for your data migration project. Template load files are provided for each migration object. Each template contains documentation regarding the relevant fields, field mapping information and data rules for converting values. The populated template files can be used to fill the staging tables with data. Alternatively, an ETL tool like SAP BODS can be used to fill the staging tables directly.

The next step in the Migration process is to complete the mapping tasks where the target values and/or fixed values are defined for the source structure. Once the staging tables are filled and the value mapping is complete, the data migration can be simulated. During the simulation process all fields and values are checked against the target (SAP S/4HANA) system without any data being created. This provides a chance to view all the (error) messages that would occur during a real data upload. After a successful simulation the data can be uploaded to the target system. Should any errors occur during this phase there is a possibility to correct the entries using the log and reload these in the target system.

Disadvantage of the SAP Data Migration process

One of the disadvantages of the Migration Cockpit is that you can only create new data and not modify or overwrite existing data in SAP. Due to this the use of the LSMW tool or the MASS transaction will still be needed to allow for mass changes to certain master and transactional data in your target system.


Overall, the Migration Cockpit is a very useful tool with key benefits as a friendly user interface, reusable load templates, detailed error log outputs and the ability to simulate your data loads before uploading to the target system. Also, being able to upload multiple objects at once and to track the process during each migration phase are beneficial to every data migration project.