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Manuel_Namyslo
Product and Topic Expert
Product and Topic Expert
2,768

Intelligent processes are integrated processes


If you are already building workflows in SAP Build Process Automation you are probably familiar with SAP Business Technology Platform and it’s comprehensive integration services. Those components are key for our Low-Code/No-Code portfolio to deliver truly integrated processes and automate in a more secure and standardized fashion.This power-duo is also an incremental part to achieve Enterprise Automation with SAP which enables you to integrate applications, discover inefficiencies and automate processes across heterogenous environments:


 

SAP Integration Suite is the leader in Gartner IPaaS Magic Quadrant and provides a holistic enterprise-wide integration platform. It offers a multitude of different services and capabilities and in this blogpost I want to highlight the main use-cases to combine SAP Build Process Automation with SAP Integration Suite for workflow development and process automation. Not only to use them as complimentary services but also to achieve a sophisticated integration architecture and accomplish End-2-End scenarios.

The key scenarios are depicted in this info-graphic and will be explored step by step:

 


 


Holistic Integration


SAP Integration Suite comes with a versatile, multi-cloud platform to support all types of integration use cased required in cloud and hybrid landscapes. Streamline Any-to-Any, SAP and third-party and data across application landscapes with comprehensive integration capabilities, connectors and adapters. This service can be very useful for integrating your workflows to SAP and non-SAP systems, either to pull data for validation purposes or to perform transactions inside a system of records like uploading a sales order, changing purchase requisition or generation of business partner master data. You can also leverage SAP Open Connectors, which provides a central hub to access more than 170 non-SAP cloud applications through harmonized REST APIs.

Here you can see how I started process development in SAP Build Process Automation for onboarding a New-Hire into my organization. For generating the purchase requisition, I am calling an iFlow inside of SAP Integration Suite via the Actions Engine:


 

The iFlow allows me to implement process integration patterns such as A2A, B2B, B2G etc. through a graphical interface and using predefined integration flow steps. While SAP Build Process can handle Restful API-Services easily, Integration Suite can be leveraged for other communication protocols such as RFC or SOAP. In this case I am calling a pre-configured SOAP service in SAP Ariba to maintain the purchase requisition for my New-Hire:




 

Event driven architecture


With SAP Event Mesh you can enable applications, integrations and extensions to communicate asynchronously through events When a business application exposes events, such as when a sales order gets created or changed in SAP S/4HANA Cloud, this event is associated with a topic to and can be subscribed to with standard protocols (AMQP 1.0, webhook, REST, Kafka, MQTT). This can be used within Build Process Automation when a workflow or RPA-Bot needs to be triggered based on events or we need to listen to event-based activities inside the workflow logic. For example: Every time a business partner is generated in SAP S/4 HANA you want to trigger a validation step inside the inbox of a process administrator. The administrator can now review the business partner and validate if address or payment information is correctly assigned. Here you can see an example of a message queue in SAP Event Mesh to listen to business partner events in S/4:


 

In that regards, SAP provides both SAP Event Mesh and SAP Advanced Event Mesh.

After we identified that a new business partner has been created, we can now trigger a workflow instance directly in SAP Build Process Automation to add additional approval steps and backend transactions to third-party systems:




 

API Governance


More and more companies rely on modern interfaces, especially REST APIs, to build integrations or applications. The proliferation of REST APIs makes the usage of a central governance building block necessary. APIs can be secured and be created as a digital product and monetize their usage or analyze typical API consumption and trends.

This can be very beneficial for processes in SAP Build Process Automation which are integrated to multiple SAP and non-SAP with various and diverse integration points which needs to be managed centrally. Also, the consumption of APIs via Integration Suite inside a process is much easier based on this holistic API consumption layer.

SAP API Management provides:

  • Security (who has access to what API)

  • Mediation (add, remove, modify information from the payload or metadata)

  • Traffic Management (protect your API from attacks or surges in requests)

  • Analytics (see who is is using what APIs in what extend)

  • Documentation (provide information about your APIs in a low-touch fashion)


Here you can see an example for maintaining sales order information in SAP S/4 HANA. I have added an Action inside the Process Builder of SAP Build Process Automation and the API is exposed via SAP API Management:


 

Here I created a request-reply pattern that allows me to configure predefined API policies to be executed during an API call:


 

Since the latest product update, SAP Build Process Automation also allows you to generate Actions projects using SAP Graph instance to consume all the business data as a semantically connected graph. Extending traditional API Management, Graph is the new unified and consolidated API for SAP-managed data. Developers use SAP Graph to build applications that access a connected business data graph of SAP-managed data, regardless of where this data resides.




 

Pre-defined integration content


The last use-case of the infographic is using the pre-defined integration content. It is technically not a component inside SAP Integration Suite, but it includes integration projects with APIs, packaged integration content and adapters which is publicly documented at the SAP Business Accelerator Hub.

Inside of the SAP Business Accelerator Hub you can find ~3.600 APIs and 200 + connectivity options for third-party solutions and custom extensions by SAP and partners. 300 + Business event types, 200 + Connectors to SAP & non-SAP and 350 + End-to-end business. This content can be leveraged to build fast and secure integration for your processes with best-practices provided by SAP and our partners:


 

And we also want to make the consumption of our integration content in SAP Build Process Automation as easy as possible. For example, you can directly select APIs from the SAP Business Accelerator Hub inside the Action Engine of Process Automation:


 

As a result you don’t need to copy and paste the JSON specification but review the content directly and create your own Actions Project much quicker:




 

Conclusion


I hope this blog helped you to get a better understanding about the synergies between SAP Build Process Automation and SAP Integration Suite. Of course there are many different scenarios or patterns how both tools can be combined to achieve business outcome. Feel free to review additional content about this topic and explore our public learning content:

 

Enterprise Automation: Blogpost about Enterprise Automation with SAP

Assess Integration: Asess your integration maturity level in two minutes and learn how to improve.

CIO Guide: Process and Data Integration in Hybrid Landscapes

SAP Business Accelerator Hub: provides a single access point to packaged integrations, APIs, events, and more.

SAP Low-Code/No-Code Learning Journey: Increase low-code/no-code skills and teach citizen developers

 

 

Stay tuned!
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