As a consultant with the SAP Integration and Certification Center, I have the opportunity to engage with numerous SAP partners and ISVs who enrich the ever-growing SAP partner ecosystem by developing enterprise solutions catering to the specific business needs of their customers and leveraging SAP’s latest technologies. Today this is especially true with the SAP Cloud Platform, a cutting-edge platform-as-a-service intended for the era of digital business and transformation. The SAP Cloud Platform has evolved rapidly since its launch with the continuous addition of new services and capabilities that simplify the extension of on-premise systems and accelerate the overall development process. In an effort to shed some light on this aspect, I have enlisted a few early adopters to share their development experience with the rest of the SAP Community. In the fourth instalment of this series, I will be having a Q&A session with Robson Souza, CEO at Bamcentric Software Solutions from Sao Paulo, Brazil. Bamcentric is one of the very first companies in Latin America to have successfully achieved SAP certification on the SAP Cloud Platform.
Hi Robson, please tell us about your company
Bamcentric is a software company which provides a software suite that automates the monitoring of business activities, generating real-time alerts and allowing the necessary actions being taken to correct problems before they reach a higher level. Bamcentric is a global OEM partner of SAP and our solution WISEGRC, is SAP Certified in the category SAP Cloud Platform On-Premise Extension. WISEGRC is also listed in the SAP App Center, the first OEM solution in Latin America listed there.
What is Bamcentric’s area of focus or expertise?
Bamcentric is focused on delivering cutting-edge software for monitoring real-time business performance, streamlining decision-making through the collection of multiple data sources, generating a new perspective, context and accuracy of information, making management more efficient. Our software is built on the SAP Cloud Platform for monitoring and predictive analysis of processes and business rules that expands SAP applications, such as SAP ERP and SAP CRM, among others. It´s based on the concept of BAM (Business Activity Monitoring), where information is analyzed in real time; unlike BI (Business Intelligence) and reporting tools, where data is analyzed based on past information and unlike Workflow and BMP tools too, which automates business processes, and tasks are passed from one employee to another. Our main goal is enhancing actions through the enterprise, providing predictive analytics and insights to connect employees and processes, identifying gaps and getting answers in order to improve operational efficiency.
How did Bamcentric begin its journey with cloud computing?
Back in 2013, we started with the on-premise model, looking for an innovation model to improve our solution and the cloud was the natural option given to its flexibility, implementation time reduction, ease of infrastructure maintenance, security and service availability so, at that time, we choose Amazon’s cloud services. When we met SAP’s cloud services and the SAP Cloud Platform, we quickly realized that it was the path we wanted to pursue; in addition to the security and flexibility of the SAP Cloud Platform, we could participate in the SAP ecosystem by providing a scalable and reliable solution for SAP customers. As a result, we stopped development on Amazon cloud services and focused 100% of our effort on tailoring our software for the SAP Cloud Platform.
What was the main reason for choosing the SAP Cloud Platform?
We decided to develop on the SAP Cloud Platform because it offered the best integration to SAP backend systems and a unique opportunity to leverage the vast and rich SAP ecosystem to connect, collaborate and innovate. We collaborated with the SAP Co-Innovation Lab here in Brazil and this gave us immediate access to the latest SAP technologies, as well as the training and support we needed to get started. We then submitted our application to the SAP certification process with the SAP Integration and Certification Center (ICC), and we achieved the certification of our application last January 2017 which we are very proud of.
How was your first experience developing on the SAP Cloud Platform?
Initially our solution was on-premise. Once we decided to migrate to a cloud model and develop on the SAP Cloud Platform, our priority was to get access to a development environment. In our case, we had the support of the SAP Co-Innovation Lab in Brazil throughout the development of our project which gave us a access to the SAP cloud platform, as well as an SAP ECC for the development of the integrations. The system access in combination with training in all components of SAP technology and necessary support for development, greatly reduced learning stages and helped us accelerate the development of the project.
Please tell us about the solution you have developed and certified?
WISEGRC enables monitoring through Intelligent agents; alerting exceptions in business rules in real-time, giving visibility on business interruption, identifying deviations in rules that could harm KPI´s and SLA’s – to Improve Operational Efficiency. From the cloud, using native SAP Cloud Components, we can securely, on-line and simultaneously, read data from SAP and non-SAP applications. Which means that our Rules Engine can use multiple data sources to generate alerts and update dashboards regarding business interruptions and faults. Alerts can be sent by email, Text Messages, Message Board and Mobile Message Board to a person, a group or people in different areas and levels in the organization, giving them the appropriate time to react, receiving alerts on the volume, speed, and frequency required by the business.
What about the technical aspects of your solution and its integration with SAP?
The solution is based on Java, HANA and an ABAP Cockpit as an interface for integration and events configuration and parameterization in the SAP ERP side. The application is completely developed in JAVA EE and runs on the JAVA Subsystem available in the SAP Cloud Platform. It makes requests to RFCs residing on the customer´s on-premise SAP system which return data used to check for the occurrence of predetermined events. Our custom ABAP coding and the functionality we have developed in ABAP is for the configuration of our solution only and it´s developed under a SAP partner-registered namespace. It´s a cockpit used for parametrization of the application; the JAVA application implemented in SCP is responsible for the remote calls and reading data from the SAP on-premise backend using the parameters configured in the cockpit.
What were the biggest challenges or issues encountered during development, if any?
It wasn’t too complicated even though HANA and SAP Cloud Platform were new technologies for us. Our technical team did some training and they were able to quickly convert the relational database to HANA and easily migrate our JAVA application to run in the SAP Cloud Platform.
What features or capabilities of the SAP Cloud Platform did you find the most compelling?
In addition of several important features SAP Cloud Platform provides such as performance, security, scalability, etc., one of the most interesting features was the SAP Cloud Connector which gives customers a secure, native and reliable connection to their on-premises SAP ERP environment with SAP Cloud Platform.
How would you describe your overall development experience on this platform? What was the most helpful?
A really positive experience because of the proximity to the SAP technical people; quick answers to all of our questions, basically the people involved made the real difference in this today´s “virtual” world.
Do you have any tips or recommendations for others who plan on building a cloud solution on the SAP Cloud Platform?
Our recommendation is to count on the support of SAP for projects using SAP technologies. In our case, SAP COIL Brazil helped us with understanding the new innovations in SAP technology, as well as the necessary training and support for developing our solution.
Are there any aspects you would like to see improved in the next version of the SAP Cloud Platform?
Dynamic allocation of machine resources and better backup and restore functionalities.
This was your first time going through the SAP Integration certification process. How was it?
It was a great experience working with the SAP team in assessing our software and its integration against SAP standards. The certification process is rigid in terms of technical proof, but fair and we could count on the support, patience and guidance of the certification consultant assigned by SAP ICC to our project. Having a SAP certified application makes a big difference for customers and partners. The certainty that the application meets SAP standards makes it easier to understand the application by breaking down technology barriers once the application has been revised in its design, operation and security aspects and will not affect performance and operational issues in the customer´s production environment. Partners become more comfortable to offer our application to their customers. An additional benefit of going through the certification process is to learn even more about the components of SAP, since it is necessary to have a great knowledge of the components, especially those in the SAP Cloud Platform to go through the certification process. It has made us platform experts and now much more able to carry out projects and guide clients and partners also in choosing and using the SAP Cloud Platform.
Finally, you had the opportunity to attend SAPPHIRE this past May. How was it and what’s next for your company?
It was a great experience attending SAPPHIRE this year. By SAP´s invitation, we had the chance to present our WISEGRC application in one of the several sessions in that huge event, which gave us unparalleled marketing visibility. We were the only partner from Latin America invited by SAP to present a session at SAPPHIRE this year, so it was a big hit.
As I’ve mentioned, having a certified solution makes all the difference to customers and business partners, and to the SAP ecosystem as a whole. Our next step will be to certify our solution to other SAP applications, such as Hybris and Ariba. Based on the knowledge we have gained, we have the opportunity to be a benchmark in SAP Cloud Platform, and we have been invited by prospects, partners and SAP to meetings and project evaluations using SAP technology connected through SAP cloud solutions.
On behalf of my company and my great team, I´d like to take the opportunity at the end of this Q&A session to thank SAP for the great care they offered and the training and support they provided to help us build our application and move forward with our business by teaming up with SAP and SAP customers.
Thank you very much SAP !
Robson, Thank you for graciously sharing your experience !
This concludes our Q&A session. My thanks to Robson and his team!
If you want to learn more about the SAP Cloud Platform certification, please visit the SAP Integration and Certification Center.
To learn more about Bamcentric
- Bamcentric Software Solutions do Brasil Ltda.
- Headquarters: São Paulo, SP, Brazil
- Industry: Cross-Industry
- Web Site: www.bamcentric.com and www.wisegrc.com
- SAP Certified Solutions Directory listing: link
- SAP App Center listing: link
- Video about SAP and WISEGRC partnership:
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