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For many SAP customers it is no longer so much a question of whether to go down the SAP HANA route but rather when to start this journey and how to approach it. In fact currently there are at least the following SAP HANA options:

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  • SAP HANA, platform edition
  • SAP Operational Process Intelligence powered by SAP HANA
  • SAP NetWeaver BW Powered by SAP HANA
  • SAP Business One, version for SAP HANA
  • SAP Business One analytics powered by SAP HANA
  • SAP Business Suite 7 Innovations 2013, version for SAP HANA
  • SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud
  • SAP HANA One
  • SAP HANA Cloud
    • SAP HANA Cloud Platform
    • SAP HANA Cloud Portal
    • SAP HANA Cloud Integration
    • SAP Mobile Platform, enterprise edition, cloud version
    • Gateway as a Service
  • SAP Fiori for SAP Business Suite
    • SAP Fiori Search
    • Fact Sheets
    • Analytical apps
  • SAP Smart Business Cockpits

With the non-cloud options pursued either on premise or outsourced to a private cloud provider.

Interestingly SAP customers faced a similar challenge when SAP introduced their SAP NetWeaver platform. At the time we applied a methodology called IT architecture roadmap to derive individual customer SAP NetWeaver roadmaps.

Today the same methodology can be applied to derive your SAP HANA roadmap. You might have read the blog of my colleague Owen Pettiford about How are you going to adopt HANA – Searching for a (Serial) Killer in which he explains that there are three high level options how to adopt SAP HANA depending on the type of organization you are. My blog will explore those options more deeply and will show how you can objectively and reproducibly derive the HANA roadmap that specifically fits your circumstances. Let me walk you through this along the IT architecture pyramid as I see it

IT architecture pyramid.jpg

On the vision level you decide what SAP HANA is for you. Whether you see it as your platform for business intelligence, mobility or development or merely as the latest incarnation of the solutions SAP provide will both drive the type of HANA products you will select as well as potentially the speed of their adoption.

Your SAP HANA strategy defines the way you adopt this in-memory technology. You could either run it on premise and build or acquire the required skills or outsource either to SAP or another private cloud provider or to a public cloud after all.

Which business processes will benefit most from the advantages of SAP HANA is defined in the process layer. Depending on your SAP HANA vision this could include bespoke processes that would require SAP HANA as a platform or standard processes implemented in SAP standard products.

Depending on the processes you selected in the previous step and your HANA vision and strategy you select the applications that you want to SAP HANA enable in the application layer. For some processes there might be multiple options that I would recommend to decide by a formal evaluation along the following IT practices:

  • User Productivity
  • Data Unification
  • Business Information Management
  • Business Event Management
  • End-to-End Process Management
  • Custom Development
  • Unified Lifecycle Management
  • Application Governance and Security Management
  • Consolidation
  • Service Design and Deployment

On the systems level you decide onto which systems you will deploy the applications you decided to SAP HANA enable based on your SAP HANA strategy. This could vary from on-site systems like an on-site SAP HANA, platform edition or on-site SAP Business Suite 7 Innovations 2011, version for SAP HANA, via private cloud offerings like SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud, up to using a public cloud like SAP HANA Cloud or SAP HANA One.

On the project level you finalize your SAP HANA roadmap by laying out the activities you defined so far on the timeline including constraints and dependencies to on-going and planned projects as well as dependencies among your SAP HANA activities themselves. Special consideration should be given to intervention points throughout your SAP HANA roadmap because it is likely that this topic will evolve quickly so that you would like to be in a position to be able to adopt your planning accordingly.

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