Wednesday, May 30, 2012

SAP Best Practices Streamlined by Agile Integration

With the augmentation of Business Object Data Integrator with ETL and the Rapid Marts, the orderliness of SAP reaches further out toward legacy sources.  SAP's ECC Master Data Structures, SAP AIO BP ("SAP All-in-One Best Practices" ), among other things, define and document IDOC structures for master data elements.

These tools work reasonably well as long as you are dealing with single source to the master definition.  Unfortunately, what lies beyond SAP in your environment is anybody's guess. If  more than half of these work for you "out-of-the-box,"  you must live a charmed life!   More than likely, your legacy sources impose a huge need for custom programming to align multiple data sources and transform them to meet the Best Practices requirements.  The variability and unknowns of your environment  probably will never be able to be addressed easily by SAP's tools, and yet that necessary custom programming consumes a good chunk of your budget and timeline.

Typical integration certification is for one source to SAP. Both the source and the destination have pre-defined schemas, which is virtually never true in real life. Again, with this, we see that this type of adapter seldom works without custom programming adjustments.

Whatever approach you are planning on using for your migration of legacy data to SAP,  you are most certainly facing a formidable, time consuming, and costly exercise.  SAP has greatly improved their tools and best practices over the years, and highly trained and experienced SAP consultants, architects, and programmers have contributed to streamlining the task of data migration. 

This is where Agile Integration Software (AIS), with its light-of-foot cross-application federation, can make a huge difference to your overall  success in meeting your objectives, and in ensuring that as changes occur, they can be accommodated quickly and easily.  That point where data migration becomes a nightmare is where AIS like Enterprise Enabler are the best solution.  The earlier it is introduced into the plan, the better, as some project steps may simply no longer be necessary.

Given the magnitude of a migration from Legacy systems to SAP, and of the ongoing integration required, it has to be a worthwhile effort to establish what the value could be to your project. With a high probability of a minimum of 50% reduction in manpower and elapsed time to implement the integrations, and a rapid, easy path to demonstrating this, why take the risk of NOT investigating?

You owe it to your shareholders, and to yourself to seriously consider AIS!

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