SAPPHIRENOW Day 2 from integration
On day two I learned quite a lot of new things regarding integration hear at SAPPHIRENOW. You can see my post on day 1 here.
On the keynote, integration was again seen as one of the big things. It made a lot of sense on how it was working. The big question is then how this really will be implemented in real life because the integration needs to build much closer into the application. The Intelligent enterprise is one of the reasons to go with SAP. Since it will allow you to use all the functionalities across the landscape.
I have created a video to show some of this here.
SAP Cloud Platform was position as the way to go for all the integration and extension work making it a one-stop shop for where to make your applications better.
For S4 HANA the cloud edition was the one that will get the most innovations and the place customers are requested to go. So we will see all the automation coming here first, and it is where you can get the speed you need. I have not seen a lot of people choosing the route they see the process as too complicated and that S4 Cloud does not support their business. And then it is here that the extensions come in and allow you to create the special process where it makes sense to diverge from best practice.
They had 5000+ customers on SAP Cloud Platform integration. Which is now half of nearly 8-10.000 SAP PI/PO customers. I would though guess that the number of cloud integration has been growing since last time I heard about it. One thing that could mess up the number is that the number of instances of CPI or different SAP customers. I have heard a lot of customers having multiple productive instances for their integration.
Talking about S/4 HANA Cloud one of the big this is how to integrate with the application. The preferred way is to use the APIs that is published around the suite in the API hub. See api.sap.com
The biggest change is that IDOC is no longer possible. SAP is using IDOCs for some scenarios but it is not designed to do EDI integration. So, customers will need to use one of the new SOAP/REST interfaces to create their EDIFACT/X12 documents. They can use Integration Advisor to help out making the process easier, but it a completely new process. Not sure how customers will be able to handle all their specifics requirements with the standard. I do hope that this standardization will mean that more EDI customer will go to standard document formats and content.
To monitor the APIs that is used to call S4 HANA cloud you probably will be using API management, because it will provide one place to monitor and administrate what is going one. You also have the option of whitelisting the API that is provided as standard from S4. I see that API management will be a big part of the exposed APIs.
Integration is not just PI anymore. There are way too many types of integration that all customers will need to understand. They all use different tools and skills so it will not be simple to handle it all. The list includes the different types.
SAP also has created a new CIO guide that covers how customers should be using the integration services in S4. And as stated above it is a different concept that we need to understand. You can seee the blog on the guide here.
Update 20180817: After having some time to condense the content I have created a blog titled “What is happening with SAP Integration?” where I share a little more on where I think the integration is going.