Very few enterprise organisations will completely migrate to Cloud Applications and will instead operate with a mix of cloud-based applications and traditional on-premises applications with a focus on integration and migration between different deployment models. (Gartner)
Therefore there is a need to adopt a strategic approach to Integration, which gives organisations the ability to become more agile and have greater flexibility, no matter what the deployment model.
Currently SAP has two solutions:
SAP Process Orchestration (SAP PO, previously called Process Integration), which is a single tenant solution and a proven platform for complex integration scenarios. SAP PO is one of the key solutions in the areas of on-premise application integration. It is deployed by many organisations, but comes with a price in terms of software license, hardware, extra maintenance and technical skills to deploy and maintain it.
SAP HANA Cloud Integration (SAP HCI) is cloud based, and delivers lower Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), but is not out of the box, particularly for popular cloud applications. There is some SAP pre-packaged content – for SAP to SAP scenarios and limited 3rd party connectors, to integrate to other applications it offers an open adapter that customers (or partners) can use to build specialised connectivity. There is still a considerable build and maintenance overhead for any custom built connectivity, monitoring and specialist skills requirement – in fact this effort is identical to using an on-premise solution. Finally, B2B EDI is not available within HCI.
There are pros and cons for each solution. The strategic decision of SAP integration with either SAP HCI or SAP PO on-premise is solely based on a customer’s architectural assessment, their specific customer needs, objectives and how acutely the challenges outlined above are present in the organisation.
Another solution is a Cloud Integration Platform (Integration Platform as a Service - IPaaS) option such as Mandant Transmission Exchange (MATRIX), which offers a single managed platform for both complex integration scenarios and cloud applications.
With MATRIX the solution offers true ‘out of the box’ SAP connectivity for both the leading cloud applications and B2B EDI integrations. MATRIX is a fully managed service delivering design, development, implementation and operational management. It has been built from the ground up on SAP HANA technology and enables your business to integrate SAP more quickly and effectively, with both cloud applications and complex integration scenarios.
Our whitepaper goes deeper into the challenges of integrating SAP with cloud-based applications as well as the options and solutions for creating a SAP Cloud Application integration infrastructure.