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This article contains content that I had originally posted in SAP Customer Center of Excellence for Azure earlier this week. I received feedback it was a long read, so I have condensed it here to the point for a proposed multi-cloud capability model for  SAPCloud Platform and Microsoft Azure.

On October 2019, SAP announced its partnership with Microsoft for Project Embrace which will help accelerate customer...This announcement brings about the power of multi-cloud scenario and organizations will be then be interested to build capabilities areas.

Traditionally, the concept of SAP Customer Center of Expertise has always been on-premise centric point of view, but SAP now recognizes the growing reality of cloud deployment models which SAP terms as Hybrid Cloud and emerging trends in DevOps.  Here I present an graphical overview of the solution capabilities for Microsoft Azure and SAP SaaS solutions and Cloud Platforms (self-explanatory I hope).

Figure 1: Overview of Microsoft Azure IaaS/PaaS and SAP SaaS/SAP Cloud PaaS. Source: Author

Embrace Architecture Use Cases and Tutorial Examples for SAP Cloud Platform Discovery Center

[3-Apr-2020]: Author's Note - Embrace Architecture is now published]

[30-Apr-2020: Author's Note - Updated try out the tutorials in SAP Cloud Platform Discovery Center]

These architectures are part of the Embrace Collaboration and also read this on Introduction to SAP Cloud Platform Discovery Center which is sandbox tutorial for you try out for Fr...

Extend SAP S/4HANA with SAP and Microsoft services

Try out this scenario here

Source: SAP as above link

Simplify business process integration across SAP and Microsoft

Source: SAP as above link

Intelligently optimize and automate processes with SAP and Microsoft services 

Source: SAP as above link

Consume Microsoft Azure services in SAP Cloud Platform

Try out this scenario here

Source: SAP as above link

Establish identity & authentication workflow between SAP and Microsoft

Try out this scenario here

Source: SAP as above link


Capability Model for a Unified SAP Customer Center of Excellence for Azure

I would propose this new Unified SAP CCoE  adopt the role of Broker Orchestrator & Integrator as part of a Digital IT Operating Model (credit: KPMG)

  • Design Authority and Governance Owner

  • Strong alignment and collaboration with business

  • IT Strategy and Roadmap to support business needs and requirements

  • Corporate standards for enterprise security and integration

  • Legacy IT tasks are redundant (datacenter, legacy software)

  • SaaS Application solutions provides opportunities for standardization and continuous innovation

  • PaaS solutions provide opportunities for integration between system of record, system of differentiation and system of innovation using Gartner’s Bi-Modal IT concepts.

  • New Skills and Role Required (blend of both SAP and Azure skills)

Figure 2: Overview of Unified SAP Customer CCoEA’s Capability Model. Source: Author

SAP and Azure Cloud Strategy

  • Governance alignment with organization’s senior leadership stakeholder on its business strategy.

  • Assess suitable maturity of cloud solutions for your organization (SaaS, PaaS, IaaS)

    • SaaS: SAP SuccessFactors, Ariba, SAP Analytics Cloud.

    • PaaS: SAP Cloud Platform on Azure, Azure PaaS services (Logic Apps, IoT, Event Hubs, Azure Data Factory, etc.)

    • IaaS: SAP workload on Azure (Azure Virtual Machines), HANA Large Instances, Azure storage, Azure Netapps).

  • Evaluate Opportunities and Risks for new solutions from SAP roadmaps and Azure updates.

  • Develop business case criteria and overall strategy for SAP solutions (cloud or non-cloud) and Azure IaaS/PaaS to fulfil enterprise business needs and future innovation.

 SAP Business, Application, Data, Development and Azure Platform Architecture

  • Business, Application, Data and Development Design

  • Integration Design

    • Integration architecture design using below services.

      • SAP Cloud Platform PaaS services: SAP Cloud Integration, API Management, Integration Advisor, Smart Data Integration.

      • Azure PaaS Services with SAP connectors: Azure Active Directory, SAP Logic Apps, Event Hub, Azure Data Factory.

    • Use of Microservices like container orchestration like Azure Kubernetes

    • SAP Cloud Platform on Azure (via Cloud Foundry) various microservices and integration services which are abstracted but still using Azure underlying services.

  • Technical Design

    • SAP NetWeaver/Basis, HANA Database and Any DB architecture solution design.

    • Azure Infrastructure Design for SAP HANA workloads.

    • Elasticity and Scalability Design for Azure.

    • High Availability and Disaster Recovery for SAP on Azure IaaS components.

    • SAP Application and User security.

    • Azure Security for Platform (Single Sign-On, platform infrastructure, encryption).

Hybrid SAP and Azure Operations

  • Hybrid operations for SAP NetWeaver/Basis on Azure IaaS.

  • Business Process Monitoring

  • Application Monitoring.

  • System and Technical Monitoring.

  • SAP Batch Job Management

  • SAP on Azure Landscape Management (use of Azure SAP LaMa connector)

  • Technical Upgrade (Bugfixes/Legal Changes)

  • Optimize Functionality

  • SAP on Azure DevOps (use of ABAP SDK for Azure)

  • Cloud Cost/Spend Optimization

Cloud Adoption and Transformation

  • Quick prototyping and iteration of proof of concepts and/or proof of value pilots or minimum viable product (MVP).

  • Practice Agile Scrum tools/methodologies for MVP; SAP Activate, or Azure DevOps for these quick wins.

  • Design, develop and build high level multi-year transition and transformation roadmap for S/4HANA and Cloud Migration (assuming you have complex existing landscapes with intricate integration and custom development in place.

  • Design, develop, build and execute detailed program/project for either transition/transformation for S/4 HANA Feature Upgrades.

  • Manage Communication with Key Business and IT stakeholders through Organizational Change Management (OCM) initiatives.


For more details of the framework for SAP and Microsoft CoE concepts, and the rationale, please read SAP Customer Center of Excellence for Azure. There is also companion article on SAP Customer Center of Excellence for Azure: Govern, Design, Innovate & Build.

Or if you are just interested to find the learning and certification pathways, please read SAP Expert Role Guide to Microsoft Azure Skills and Certification.

Other Relevant Articles on SAP Technical Community

Quick Guide to SAP on Azure SLA and OLA

Quick Project Manager’s Guide to SAP on Azure

Quick Reference to SAP on Azure Components for HA and DR

SAP Customer Center of Excellence for Azure

SAP Customer Center of Excellence for Azure: Govern, Design, Innovate & Build

SAP Center of Excellence for Azure: Sustain & Run

Microsoft Cloud Operating Model & SAP on Azure Migration Scenarios

SAP IT Service Operations Management on Azure

SAP Security Operations on Azure

SAP Expert Role Guide to Microsoft Azure Skills and Certification

Exam Study Resources for AZ-120 Planning and Administering Microsoft Azure for SAP Workloads.

Worst SAP Production Outage Disasters


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