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Rui-Nogueira
Product and Topic Expert
Product and Topic Expert
In this blog I want to explain to you how to better understand SAP’s reference architectures for the business processes of the integrated intelligent suite from SAP.

SAP'S CLOUD INTEGRATION STRATEGY


As you might know from my blog post around the SAP One Domain Model, SAP provided the SAP Cloud Integration Strategy: a comprehensive plan on how SAP provides an integrated intelligent suite and explained more in details in a blog post from SAP’s CEO Christian Klein.

With common suite qualities across all the SAP applications the suite enables customers to run end-to-end business processes like:

  • Recruit to Retire (Understand, manage and optimize all aspects of your employees and external workers)

  • Lead to Cash (Manage all aspects of the customer experience)

  • Source to Pay (Manage all purchasing processes)

  • Design to Operate (Create a digital mirror of your entire supply chain – from design to planning, manufacturing, logistics and ongoing maintenance)


To better understand the reference architectures for those business processes and how they can be, one of the common suite qualities are the end-to-end process blueprints.

The corresponding reference architecture content is now available via SAP API Business Hub, addressing a main customer pain point of having no clear visibility into:

  • SAP’s end-to-end reference architecture

  • Which SAP products to use for what and how they are supposed to interact

  • How SAP products map to business process steps


Providing this transparency leads to a reduction of implementation efforts and allows for better planning of investments

SAP Reference Architecture Models


The SAP reference architecture content has been integrated into SAP API Business Hub.



Figure 1 - Business Processes in SAP API Business Hub

 

To explore the models yourself, search for the CONTENT TYPE “Business Processes”. Select a process (e.g. Hire to Retire) and click on one of the chevrons for a process step (aka business activity) and you will get a detailed solution process flow for that business process.
Figure 2 - Collaboration Diagram for process "Onboarding New Hires" in Hire to Retire business process

 

The solution process flow clearly points out how the business process is implemented using SAP solutions. In case it covers multiple solutions, you can even click on the message flows (dotted lines) between the application activities and you are immediately directed to the documentation of the API that is called for this step. Likewise, you can navigate easily to iFlow documentation for SAP CP integration flows.

KEY BENEFITS FOR CUSTOMERS & PARTNERS


With this detailed drill-down customers and partners have access to SAP’s reference architecture for the business processes of the integrated intelligent suite.

You get:

  • Business Scenarios & Value Flow Diagrams providing a list of value-adding business activities in a standardized and IT-agnostic way.

  • Software Collaboration Diagrams showing the flow of application activities across all components of the involved SAP solutions and pointing out how the components interact, including references to all relevant APIs and integration content (iFlows).

  • Clear links between the business activities and application activities / software components, bridging the gap between business architecture and IT solution architecture.


Your benefits:

  • Get a consistent overview on E2E processes supported by the integrated intelligent suite based on a standardized methodology

  • Explore how E2E scenarios decompose into applications, modules, business services, technologies and integrations

  • Map out the roadmap to adopt the solution and transition from current solution landscape to target

  • Align to SAPs future reference architecture


 

FEEDBACK IS WELCOME


In case you have feedback for any of the business processes, just click on the “Details” tab and press the button “Write a review”. We are looking forward to hearing more from you and we are eager to learn more about your view on the provided blueprints.



Figure 3 - providing feedback on business processes

 

WHAT COMES NEXT?


First, SAP will be offering you two new types of diagrams for describing additional aspects of scenario implementations, in particular:

  • Architecture Blueprint: Diagrams showing an overview of a concrete implementation variant, covering involved software products and components along with their interrelations and structural groupings.

  • Data Flow Diagrams providing an overview of needed data, the data object names and the data flow between data objects as well as software components.


Also, SAP will consistently add hybrid scenario implementations (combination of cloud and on premise) in addition to the current cloud-only scenario implementations for all E2E processes covered by the integrated intelligent suite.

We will keep you posted!
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