As migration to the cloud becomes a critical part of business continuity, companies seek the infrastructure, scale, security, and functionality of hyperscalers to accelerate their move. But it’s a task that needs a plan extensive and forward-looking enough to reap the full value of the cloud.
Hyperscalers – such as Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, and Microsoft Azure – have become an answer to some of the most complex concerns over digital transformation. Some organizations view it as an opportunity to keep up with the constant need to adopt new technologies and adapt to changing requirements. IT teams may feel relieved to have the right infrastructure and the capacity to enable every change. And, better yet, existing and new data, applications, and connections in between can remain secure and protected.
Despite the advantages, decoupling the business from an on-premise approach to IT requires a line of thinking that includes considering:
- What are the company’s unique needs?
- How much support is needed from the hyperscaler platform?
- How can the business avoid being locked into one hyperscaler?
- Does the chosen hyperscaler reflect the true end-to-end nature of the existing IT landscape?
- How could revenue growth impact future architectural decisions and software investments?
Reflecting on these questions requires a long-term view of the overall relationship with hyperscalers – even when running an SAP solution landscape in the cloud. Otherwise, companies risk introducing many points of failure that may limit the ability to scale the cloud architecture optimally. Or worse, they could miss opportunities to further leverage new database architecture and application capabilities in the cloud.
Mitigating Risks to Drive Cloud Scalability and Elasticity
For many of our customers, the portfolio of premium engagements from SAP helps crystallize their cloud strategy without getting sidetracked by perceived IT barriers and short-term thinking. Whether moving a legacy enterprise resource planning (ERP) system to SAP S/4HANA Cloud or a database to SAP HANA, our premium engagements can offer insights into unlocking the full potential of existing technology in the cloud.
Recently, a customer wanted to move its 20-year-old instance of SAP ERP Central Component (SAP ECC) to SAP S/4HANA Cloud running on a hyperscaler platform. The CIO initially thought that our involvement was needed only to plan the physical aspects of a fast-paced cloud migration.
Over time, he began to understand how everyday IT operations – including data and database management – could be optimized with an architectural strategy that supports future growth. Instead of viewing data management as a pure archiving activity, the CIO discovered data and database management in the cloud can reduce monthly capital and operational expenditures because the hyperscaler removed the need to support expensive hardware.
In this case, the customer quickly realized that its cloud migration was more than the short-term move of data and applications. Premium engagements helped define the larger vision of the company’s digital transformation, weighing risks and exploring best practices for smooth integration of multiple SAP and third-party software-as-a-service (SaaS) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS) solutions.
In return, a hyperscaler-supported cloud environment was set up to help provide simpler and more cost-efficient IT operations, increased capacity for innovation, and harmonized processes to boost the flexibility to adapt to changing business requirements.
Creating a Road Map for Future Innovation with Expert Insight
Digital trends – for example, fast-paced application innovation and the explosion of enterprise data – present a wider need for the scalability and flexibility of cloud platforms. And SAP makes that option available to every customer by working with a variety of hyperscalers.
But such a transition is not a simple switch from an on-premise landscape to the cloud. A strategic move to a hyperscaler environment requires the expertise and guidance of a software vendor that understands the current and future demands of a business’s technology.
That’s the beauty of the portfolio of premium engagements from SAP. By tapping a unique knowledge base on how SAP applications can best run on a scalable and elastic cloud infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) platform, our customers can map their entire transformation journey while safeguarding the data and applications that drive their operations.
Learn more about how premium engagements from SAP can help secure your business’ success with the highest level of collaboration and expertise on cloud technology.
Nicholas Del Grande is head of Premium Engagement Sales for North America at SAP.