I have been working with SAP RDS’s for the last 18 months and I am surprised about the poor knowledge of what “actually” a SAP RDS and what it is for. I see this when I talk to customers, people within SAP andfellow consultants. I think the term “RDS” is known, but the true understanding is frequently mistaken. Last year Bluefin Solutions published a blog by Jeff Winter from SAP who succinctly articulated answers to some common questions –
If you have not read the blog before, I would encourage you to do that.
If you have an interest in RDS you hopefully would have seen this slide before. What is it sometimes lost is what is actually meant by this slide. In essence it is simple to understand that an RDS consists of licences (software) and pre defined solution (content) that will be delivered in an agreed timeframe for a fixed price (services). In order to do this common documentation and guides are delivered as standard (enablement).
Common Statements around SAP RDS
An SAP RDS is for a Proof of concept
The simple answer here is that is false. The fixed scope of the RDS is designed to provide consistent functionality to maximise a process. Some customers may wish to extend the solution, however the RDS is designed to be moved to a productive environment. That is not to say on certain occasions it could be used as a proof of concept and some SAP RDS’s are more aligned to a proof of concept.
I have to buy an SAP RDS through SAP
An RDS is made up of two key contracts. The first for the implementation (services) and the second for the licences (software). SAP Partners
can qualify (be accredited) to deliver the SAP RDS. The principals around this acreditation are that the scope and duration of the SAP RDS need to be the
same. Further to this the service price of the SAP RDS needs to be the same or less than the local SAP price. There are two key further points to make here.
1 – Generally a Partner lead SAP RDS will be cheaper than the standard SAP list price for the services.
2 – There are now close to 200 SAP RDS’s and not all of them can be delivered by the local SAP Consulting teams. SAP Partners can select SAP RDS’s where they have experience of the solution and the RDS methodology providing better knowledge at a cheaper rate where applicable.
I cant add scope to my SAP RDS
Yes you can. Partners may offer additional work packages to compliment the core SAP RDS. It is important to note that the core scope and functionality of the RDS will be delivered for the agreed price in the agreed duration. However after this has been completed changes can be made to customise the solution to your requirements. It is worth looking at the actual scope of the solution and detailing what is not included. In fact working out what is not included is just as valuable as reviewing the scope. Sometimes tasks as the install of the software is not included and there will be pre-requisites in terms of existing landscape set up.
I can only purchase SAP designed SAP RDS’s
This is not true. SAP has been encouraging SAP Partners to create their own RDS’s. This is a win, win, win for customers, SAP Partners and SAP. The Partner lead SAP RDS has to be significantly different to any standard SAP RDS or in a space where SAP do not plan to create an SAP RDS. This provides
the customer a wider scope of SAP RDS’s to select from, it means SAP do not need to invest in scope areas where they do not want to and it provides the SAP Partner community a way to express their expertise in a certain product or solution.
I cant find any information around SAP RDS’s
Currently there are two main repositories for SAP RDS’s. The first is the SAP Marketplace that has an RDS section and is then broken down by
functional and technical areas: https://websmp110.sap-ag.de/~form/sapnet?_SHORTKEY=00200797470000096002& The content here is pretty consistent and the Solution Discovery section provides a good overview of the SAP RDS.
The second area within the SAP domain is the SAP Eco-hub. This lists all of the SAP Partner accredited RDS’s. http://ecohub.sap.com/store/rds/