- Oct 18, 2017
- Stephan Pflanzer
SAP License Optimization in the Cloud
SAP is offering a real alternative to conventional on-premises implementation with products like SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud (IaaS), SAP HANA Cloud Platform (PaaS), and SaaS applications like SAP Hybris, SAP Ariba, SAP SuccessFactors, Fieldglass and Concur.
But the cloud doesn’t just consist of SAP. A continuously growing number of providers offer services from ERP and related fields. Not only do companies now face the challenge of connecting cloud services with each other, but also of connecting them with existing on-premises applications.
When it comes to cloud license management, strategic integration is the name of the game.
SaaS lightens the load for IT
SaaS solutions certainly have some major advantages as they are very quick to set up. Customers can use SAP best practice integration scenarios and then factor in their company's own requirements. They no longer need to invest in or install additional hardware or software.
These solutions can also be scaled to meet a company’s needs at any time. Not only does this ease the burden on IT, it also increases the flexibility of other departments to adapt more quickly to constant new requirements.
Yet at the same time, this means that IT will face a new set of challenges in license management and compliance.
Use a tool-based SAP license management solution
Despite the fact that every solution has its own independent licensing or cost model, SAP offers no solution that would facilitate central management across all applications. As a result, cost management is almost impossible without additional tool support.
The ideal SAM solution should offer a preview across all components. It should also offer a kind of ‘slide’ to help every company be certain of what its optimization result should look like.
What should a tool-based SAM solution for SAP licenses offer? It should integrate the conventional licensing model of the on-premises world, and at the same time be able to cover the ever more dynamic cloud market.
The solution needs to be able to create metrics which map the complexity of all of the contractual regulations and which is tailored to the company’s contract consumption. But this can only happen through the use of an intelligent ruleset that can map each required metric. It should also be able to interpret and exploit grey areas in the SAP contracts in the customer's favor.
Get full visibility of your SAP licenses
Treating individual applications, such as SAP SuccessFactors, in isolation doesn’t go far enough. So, a truly effective SAP license management tool shouldn’t just provide an optimization proposal for a single application. It should offer an optimization preview across all components.
This creates a license and cost picture with complete, consistent transparency about current costs, volume of licenses, and actual consumption at all times. What’s critical here is the ability to connect these components.
Expert SAP license analysis
Of course, this requires the Software Asset Management tool provider to have a really good understanding of SAP contract conditions. Experience shows that the cost implications can be huge, quickly adding up to millions of dollars.
SAP licensing experts must have precise knowledge of the potential side effects of every optimization measure on other areas. Ultimately, only someone who has first analyzed and interpreted the contractual configurations can legitimately give a company a clean bill of license health.