ERP has become essential to business processes in today’s world. ERP systems prove to be extremely beneficial. The implementation advantages override the cost companies incur. With SAP being a popular choice for ERP adoption, it is no wonder that the market for it will witness an exponential rise in the coming years. However, to realize the actual value of SAP, organizations need to extend its capability to other core systems as well – for example, CRM, CPQ, Inventory, MES, etc. This, though, is fraught with some inherent challenges. SAP systems may not be so quickly ready to integrate with other enterprise systems.
Challenges with Integrating SAP:
We outline some of the significant challenges that businesses face when integrating SAP:
- There are no existent industry-standard capabilities for integration by SAP. It offers proprietary capabilities like iDOCS, BAPI, ABAP, RFC, and JCo.
- It is muddled by data inconsistency due to customized functionality implementation.
- Businesses also need specialized technical-know-how or SAP integration experts for complicated development for IDOCS, BAPI, etc.
- SAP integration is required with multiple external applications running on different technologies.
- Integration needs are dynamic and evolving with the emergence of new business scenarios.
How Businesses can Overcome this Malady:
For a long time, this continued to be a severe concern for enterprises adopting SAP. Fret not. Businesses losing their mind over these obstacles can now rest easy with Boomi!
What businesses needed was a modern digital integration platform that is agnostic to any specific technology and offers a readily available infrastructure to integrate with SAP and other third-party systems.
Boomi is one such iPaaS (Integration Platform as a Service) that fits the bill perfectly. Boomi can help an organization address integration-related challenges. Furthermore, it can rapidly integrate other applications or realize emerging use cases.
Let us quickly go through how Boomi addresses SAP-related integration challenges:
Boomi platform offers OOB SAP certified SAP Enterprise Connector with various options to integrate SAP - Doc, BAPI/RFM, file extracts, and SOAP web services. It also offers SAP Netweaver Gateway for SAP business data accessible as RESTful resources. SAP connector takes the complexity of these integration methods away from the developer. In fact, it brings in an element of choice. It gives the developer an option to choose integration methods while configuring SAP connector.
The Connector has two parts –
- A Connection to establish network connectivity with SAP with few simple, configurable steps
- An Operation to deal with an incoming or outgoing data profile
While configuring an operation, the Boomi SAP connector creates a profile (XML, JSON, DB, or other) based on backend service selected – iDOCS/BAPI, RFC, etc. and caters to a custom data structure.
- Boomi SAP Connector hides all integration complexity at SAP level from the Boomi developer by offering the option to choose the type of service to connect SAP and creating custom profiles automatically to deal with data within the Boomi platform for transformation, business rules, etc.
- Apart from SAP Enterprise-Grade Connector, Boomi also offers 200+ other connectors for various standard applications available in the market – Salesforce, NetSuite, Oracle EBS, Oracle CRM, Microsoft D365, SuccessFactors, Workday, and more. It also has many other technology connectors, e.g., major databases, Webservices (REST, SOAP, OData), JMS, etc. This helps integrate SAP with various other systems, on-premise or on-cloud.
- With its low code high configuration visual UI based development capability, Boomi can build any new integration between SAP and any other system rapidly, realizing new use cases coming up because of changing business needs.
- Boomi has its run time (Atom – single unit of run time or Molecule – Clustered environment of run times) loosely coupled with the Boomi Platform (atomsphere).
Simply put, this means Boomi run time can be installed on the Network or data center of your choice, e.g., Boomi Cloud, Public Cloud (AWS, Azure, etc.), Private Cloud, or on within your Datacenter. This kind of flexibility allows you,
- More control over your data as data only passes through the network where run time is installed, thereby addressing data security concerns.
- Achieve architectural topology that suits your need depending on how various applications are spread in your IT ecosystem (On Cloud, On-Premise, Hybrid, e).
Use Cases of Achievable Integration between SAP & Other Applications:
Multiple use cases can quickly be achieved between SAP and various other application:
- Order-to-Cash and Order-to-Fulfilment
- Supply Chain Planning and Operation
- B2B/EDI management through X12, EDIFACT, ASC, RosettaNet, API management, etc
- Partner/Customer quick onboarding
- Rapid data migration from SAP ECC to SAP S4/Hana or from other enterprise systems because of M&A
- Procure to Pay cycle
- Integration of IIoT data for manufacturing production planning or for efficient maintenance
About Jade Global:
Jade Global, an industry leader and trusted technology collaborator for futuristic digital enterprises, is a Boomi Certified Elite Partner specialized in enterprise-grade solutions for all types of integration needs. Jade Global works closely with Boomi to deliver a complex yet cost-effective integration solutions to help customers accelerate business agility and achieve rapid digital transformation.
It has been successfully building interfaces using Boomi and helping businesses increase their user adoption, engagement, and connect through multitudes of disparate systems.
Jade Global uses a hybrid Integration methodology that simplifies and achieves rapid time to value by reducing data and application integrations by weeks, months, and even years!
Let our Boomi experts set up your SAP integration roadmap, design, and integration process to fast-track your business growth and optimize your operations today!
About the Author
Atul is head of Integration and NetSuite Delivery Unit & looking into India pre-sales at Jade Global. He has 20+ years of experience driving transformation programs where integration remains the core success factor. He has worked with Mid-Large size organizations and is experienced in Global Delivery Model serving many Small, Medium and Large customers in Telecom, Media and BFSI space.