SAP on Cloud: Redefining the Future of Enterprises

This is the right time for you to take off your SAP on the cloud journey. As a technology leader, you have been pondering over the right cloud platform and a trusted partner, to chart the best path for your organization.

SAP on Cloud: Redefining the Future of Enterprises
SAP on Cloud: Redefining the Future of Enterprises

Here’s a quick guide to help you define, design, and execute differentiated SAP services on the cloud.

Our experts have put together key success mantras for a successful SAP migration in our latest article. Here is all you need to know to choose a cloud platform wisely, to fit your specific needs. Get answers to your concerns over cost benefits, performance, and impact on long-term business goals.

Table of contents

Cloud is the Destination for Every Enterprise Software
CIOs Roadmap to Cloud Goes Beyond Cost Advantage
Evolving IT Landscape Dictate Choice of Cloud Platform
Customer Roadmap for Hybrid Cloud Migration
Cloud Advantage is Dependent on Choice of MSP

Explore the Dos in Choosing the Right Cloud Platform and Solution Mix for Your SAP Workloads

Cloud is dominating the market like never before. Gartner says, “As cloud becomes increasingly mainstream through 2022, it will dominate ever-increasing portions of enterprise IT decisions.”

So, does your enterprise strategy have SAP on Cloud migration at the core?

Enterprises are now considering moving their S/4 HANA workloads to the cloud to be future-ready. The CIO roadmap to the cloud goes beyond cost advantage for peak performance and improved employee efficiency. The argument over cost as the major focus of cloud migration is not the only focus, anymore. Organizations only need to keep three mantras in mind, Clarity on Requirements, Focus on Function, and Attention to Performance to carry out a successful migration.

Additionally, once the strategy is devised, organizations must choose the right cloud platform and partner to deliver on the promise.

Highlighting Your Key Takeaways:

  • CIOs Roadmap to Cloud Goes Beyond Cost Advantage.
  • Public, Private or Hybrid cloud – CIOs must align their strategy to long-term business goals.
  • Cloud MSPs provide a key role in delivering cost and performance benefits.

Cloud is the Destination for Every Enterprise Software

Enterprises are in a hurry to get on the cloud, and it is understandable. Every business, big or small, is committed to secure its IT footprint and maximize return on investment. Gartner says, “As cloud becomes increasingly mainstream through 2022, it will dominate ever-increasing portions of enterprise IT decisions.” And, ERP being the most critical asset in the IT landscape, taking it to the cloud is imperative. The question is not even when, but how quickly and on which cloud platform.

SAP is at the core of enterprise IT strategy. The new-age applications running on SAP S4 HANA claim huge server space and require advanced monitoring processes for optimal outcomes. Given the server bandwidth required, running it on-premise is not as productive. The cost, resource, and time-intensive complex deployment processes add a further barrier to scalability. Cloud deployment, with cost-optimized easy scalability, security and accessibility is thus the only viable option. However, the journey to the cloud is not linear and weighs on the minds of the CIO/ CTOs. Cloud deployment is one part of the story, the more critical aspect is to manage the workloads daily. How do you move your SAP landscape to the cloud and manage the day to day operations without draining the coffers and stressing out the IT teams, all this with zero friction peak performance?

CIOs Roadmap to Cloud Goes Beyond Cost Advantage

It brooks no arguments that cost is a major consideration for a move to the cloud. Let’s face it your IT budgets are strained and unless the ROI is clearly visible, gaining the trust of the business sponsor is going to be tough. However, as the IT leader, integration is your biggest worry. Seamless integration of existing environment, the non-SAP workloads, Databases, and Applications to on cloud SAP S/4 HANA landscape emerge as major dependencies. Another major concern is the breach-proof security of the servers, networks, and systems. Mission-critical applications have a direct bearing on business, and their security cannot be left to chance. Also, the strong regulatory frameworks mandate an audit-ready environment, failing which you stare at huge penalties. The challenges seem daunting and therefore availability of expert holistic support and service defines the direction of your cloud journey.

Your choice of partner determines the success of your cloud program. However, to stay in the driver’s seat you must build a clear line of sight all the way to daily operations and future scalability. A staggered or stymied approach will pose more questions than answers. Clarity on end to end project will give you control over the transition roadmap. Here are some key considerations for successful cloud implementation of your SAP S/4 HANA workloads.

Clarity on Requirements: What are your drivers for the cloud journey? Beyond the obvious advantages, there has to be clarity at the granular level. Before you chart the course, a detailed assessment of the current on-premise environment is the foremost requirement. Make an inventory of the existing servers, including capacity, sizing, utilization, and performance metrics. A mapping of the existing landscape to foreseeable future requirements informs cloud architecture design and provisioning of bandwidth and tools.

Focus on Function: Your businesses demand high availability of applications for end-users. The criticality of your SAP applications and vulnerability impact dictates the RPO and RTO metrics. Many enterprises limit their focus to the availability of SAP servers, which impacts the efficiency and creates a barrier for high performance. Latency, secure access, and ease of operations are major concerns, that inform the choice of cloud platform and architecture design. Application-level uptime of 99.99% is non-negotiable, while the RPO and RTO is a more business-centric consideration. The focus on these key metrics is imperative for the smooth functioning of your SAP landscape on the cloud.

Attention to Performance: End-user access to SAP applications, both in production and development must not be hindered. A zero-friction deployment is non-negotiable. The location of your servers is a key determinant in high-performance assurance. In-country hosting is thus preferred to circumvent latency issues. The expanse and size of your network and its path to cloud hosting also impact the performance. These considerations are important to build a high performing landscape, supporting business as usual.

Evolving IT Landscape Dictate Choice of Cloud Platform

Once you have gained clarity on your current landscape and future requirements, you are posed with another challenge – the choice of the right cloud platform. Which platform is best suited to your SAP on Cloud strategy?

At the core of your SAP on Cloud journey is the clear line of sight, right from deployment to day-to-day management, governance, security, and compliance. The most common concern among the CIOs is on the choice of cloud – private, public, or hybrid. There is no single answer to the question. The choice is closely aligned to the nature of your existing landscape as well as short- and long-term business goals. Every cloud platform brings in its own nuances, advantages, and dependencies. Your current and future technology requirements must be thoroughly analyzed to inform the choice of the right platform. (It would be ideal to provide a diagram to illustrate the private/public/hybrid cloud for SAP)

Evolving IT Landscape Dictate Choice of Cloud Platform
Evolving IT Landscape Dictate Choice of Cloud Platform

Private Cloud Provides Greater Control

One of the key drivers for private cloud deployment of SAP is to meet regulatory requirements. Most countries have data localization laws in place, making it necessary for businesses to host their workloads within the country in a more controlled environment. As per IDC research, the private cloud deployments reduce infrastructure costs by 25% to 50%, with an average of 32%. Additionally, there is a substantial reduction in provisioning and deployment time by an average of 35% and 70% respectively.

However, for enterprises with limited visibility on their mid to long term requirements, the private cloud could be a difficult choice. Also, while choosing the private cloud environment they need to be careful in onboarding the cloud partner. The availability of best in class security tools and practices are a major concern. And, unless your cloud services partner has an advanced practice, your IT environment would be wanting for the best tools and technologies.

Private Cloud Provides Greater Control
Private Cloud Provides Greater Control

Public Cloud Bring Technology Edge

Public cloud, with the easy scalability and most advanced technology practices, provides an optimal environment to host SAP S/4HANA workloads. Public Cloud provides relatively more freedom to scale up or scale out the existing servers as well brings down the complexity in deploying new servers. These environments are well served with packaged pricing options and provide the latest technology upgrades regularly. Further, the well-developed API libraries provide easy integration with non-SAP systems and applications. IaaS and PaaS advantages deliver improved efficiency and increased productivity while bringing down resource dependency. However, it can be overwhelming for small and mid-sized organizations. The companies looking for an exclusive environment may find it limiting to share cloud space, even though the security and sanctity of their landscape are ensured.

Hybrid Cloud Bring Easy Flexibility

Hybrid clouds are best suited for complex landscapes with multiple Lines of Business (LOB). Gartner predicts that by next year (2021) more than 80% of product-centric companies would move from a “monolithic ERP solution to a federated ERP application”. For enterprises with a central command and shared services model, a hybrid cloud is a natural choice. A hub and spoke architecture is at the core of such deployments. And, managing a vast, distributed landscape with zero disruption is a major challenge. Most organizations are stretched beyond means to run the environment efficiently and are continuously struggling to gain optimal performance.

Customer Roadmap for Hybrid Cloud Migration

Customer Roadmap for Hybrid Cloud Migration
Customer Roadmap for Hybrid Cloud Migration

Cloud Advantage is Dependent on Choice of MSP

Finally, all the considerations culminate in the right choice of your cloud partner. SAP service partner with differentiated cloud-agnostic managed services capabilities is your best choice. The journey to the cloud begins with the precise strategy and proceeds through business-aligned architecture design, swift deployment, management, monitoring, governance, and security compliance. You can be overwhelmed with the perceived complexity. And, if you pick a different partner for each stage, the stretch on resources and mounting costs, not to mention the ever-expanding timelines, will outweigh the desired outcomes. You must choose a multi capability partner who can take end-to-end ownership and deliver a zero disruption environment under a single SLA. The MSP must bring expertise in Server Management, OS Management, DB management, Storage and Data Services, Active Directory Integration, Networking services, daily operations, 24/7 monitoring with NOC and SOC on top of providing the best in class security. AIOps and DevOps powered managed services delivery with expertise on top of the breed security tools such as SIEM, SOAR, PIM, WAF, and HBSS bring invincibility to your environment.

Source: Cloud4C

Published by Natalie Wong

, as a technical writer for how-to guides, tutorials, fixes for common problem happen on gaming and console, and articles about the latest tech. My gaming alias is Midnight, and I usually play PUBG, CSGO, GTA V and some coop games.