We know them by heart, the criticisms around SAP licensing. Lack of understanding, complexity of contracts and use rights, and inadequate license management tooling. Over the last years, SAP launched several initiatives in response to this criticism
TIP #23 December 2019: SAP changes - what are the consequences for ITAM and for the SAP license manager?
Take notice of several developments that have taken place regarding SAP (automated) metering, like LUI, LUPA and LAW 2.0. In addition to that and in response to the demand to provide measurable pricing, SAP launched a new pricing model. In this model, the challenging settlement of indirect use is replaced by the so called “Digital Access” concept. SAP is a company that is praised for its vison and being well prepared for the future. You can expect the same for this new pricing model.
Looking ahead, understanding how 3rd party software, bots and Internet of Things (IoT) devices interact with the SAP system is going to be crucial to ensure compliance. This will require proper communication between SAM/ITAM and other areas of the business, such as Enterprise Architects and ERP teams as well. An organisation needs to be aware of and understand the impact designs could have on the organisation’s licensing position. This needs to be worked through and modelled across departments, making people aware of the financial implications. Of course, not everything of the new SAP pricing model is detailed out yet, and neither is the IoT part. But it is clear that SAP is already preparing for the next step.
Consequences & Actions
Knowing this, what are the consequences for SAM/ITAM and the SAP License Manager? What kind of activities should be deployed?
- Get familiar with the SAP developments of license metering, including LUI / LUPA / SLAW 2.0, as well as for the new SAP pricing concept “Digital Access”;
- Become part of the conversation on cost-effective usage of SAP. Even if the new pricing model is not yet opportune for your organisation, get in contact with Enterprise Architects and ERP teams. Building bridges and preparation requires time. The new pricing model can help to build a (trusted) partnership on the joint interest: the usage of SAP in the most cost-effective way.
- Create a SAM/ITAM roadmap specifically for SAP. Detail out elements like process (business), organisation and technology. The process element you very likely already have in place (ISO 19770-1:2017). For the other elements, an effort lies ahead. For the organisation element it is key to govern the partnership between Enterprise Architects and ERP teams. For the technology element ask yourself when to start investigating and determining which solutions are available to support SAP measurement.