End to End Story for Implementation in SAP Cloud ALM
In this blog post, I would like to explain the steps to get maximum value from SAP Cloud ALM quickly and also a recommended sequence. You can watch the video linked below or just read as you prefer.
so lets first meet the characters in the story
These characters follow the sequence below
- Requesting SAP Cloud ALM
- Initial setup by Administrator
- Project Setup by Project lead
- Business scope setup by Business Experts
- Fit To Standard Workshops
- Requirements approval and decomposition
- Test Preparation
- Change and Deployment Management
- Test Execution and Defect Management
- Analytics and Reporting
This post is also cross-linked to many other sources so you don’t need to struggle to find the relevant information, so let’s get started
Requesting SAP Cloud ALM
The first thing you need to check is usage rights. Usage rights are included in the SAP Cloud Service subscription and in SAP Enterprise Support so in all likelihood you already have an entitlement and you just need to make use of it.
You can follow this procedure and request SAP Cloud ALM from SAP for me.
Initial Setup by Administrator
The details are documented in this guide. Basically, the job of the administrator is to ensure
- Users are onboarded and ensure they have appropriate authorization roles based on their responsibilities in User Management
- Optional integrations such as Integration to SAP Central Business Configuration and SAP Cloud Integration Automation service are evaluated and configured
- Check that Landscape and Tenant data is available in the Landscape management
- Creation of System Groups to be used by Projects subsequently. (This can also be done later, please refer change and deployment section in this Blog Post)
Project Setup by Project Lead
Given a user has the authorization role of a Project Administrator or a Project lead, this person can set up the project in these easy steps
- Select a Roadmap Template from the SAP Activate methodology. This converts the roadmap instructions into actionable and trackable tasks
- Set the appropriate access level. Default is restricted.
- Setup Optional Integration to SAP Central Business Configuration.
- Setup Timeboxes which include a combination of Phases and Milestones and also as an option agile methodology using sprints
- Setup Teams and assign persons to appropriate project roles in a team
- Setup Scopes as explained in the next section
- Assign Landscape to the Project via a Deployment plan assignment ( (This can also be done later, please refer change and deployment section in this Blog Post)
If required you can add a lot of flexibility to the project by setup custom phases, roles, tags, workstreams, and deliverables for the Project to use. You can also use Excel Upload to bring content quickly to the Project
Scope Setup by Business Process Experts and Project Lead
The Project always has a charter or an objective. The Project has a scope. Scope in SAP Cloud ALM has a special meaning. It’s an entity that denotes a collection of solution scenarios which in turn constitute solution processes. This content is pre-loaded into SAP Cloud ALM from Enterprise Architecture Reference Library ( EARL).
The project lead in consultation with Business Process experts should decide
- How many scopes the Project should have
- Should a scope be restricted to one Solution Package or multiple
- which solution Processes should be set in scope for the Project
Fit to standard Workshops
SAP Cloud ALM enables you to expedite the time required to narrow down decisions on how close you can stay to SAP standard and which requirements, gaps I need to fulfill, and which extensions are really required. You can do this easily by reviewing the pre-loaded BPMN diagrams with Business Process experts and collecting requirements in the proper Business Process context.
That way you can eliminate all offline and outdated excel sheets and have completely alive and up-to-date environments. As the requirements proceed in developing the Business Process experts can still monitor Solution Process traceability ensuring the focus on process centricity is never lost
Requirements approval and decomposition
Requirements collected from the Fit to standard process are prioritized and categorized. This can be done in multiple ways for example using priority attributes, workstreams, or tags. You can easily extend the workstreams list using an Excel upload and the tag list via quick creation. Then the Requirements should be taken through an approval process and once approved the Requirement can be broken down into user stories and sub-tasks. To expedite this process you can download the template
and then use Excel upload and upload multiple requirements along with their user stories and sub-tasks
The advantages of using SAP Cloud ALM for testing are many
- It can be easily connected to the Test automation tool for SAP S/4HANA Cloud. Even the results of your test executions are automatically available in SAP Cloud ALM once the integration is set up.
- You can maintain manual test cases easily even via Excel Upload
- You get out-of-the-box reporting for manual and automated test cases together
This Blog post can help you understand the testing process.
This saves a lot of time and increases accuracy as you can selectively decide which process steps are relevant for testing. When the test cases are prepared, they can be assigned to Requirements or user stories
Change and Deployment Management
SAP Cloud ALM also enables you for maintaining change records and also transport orchestration. One of the best sources to understand this is this Blog Post.
SAP Cloud ALM provides you with capabilities to automatically detect your connected systems in landscape management where connected products are referred to as Service Types.
once you validate that the tenant data is correct, you can create system Groups
indicating in which role these systems(tenants) are planned to be used
SAP Cloud ALM offers an entity called Feature which acts as the change record and orchestrator for Deployment. It’s important to understand how Requirements, Features, and user stories work together. A Requirement is broken down into smaller units called user stories and these user stories are assigned to Features for Deployment. So Feature can be considered a delivery vehicle that offers a route to production.
Possible options are
Feature -> Production ( in case of Bug Fix)
User Story -> Feature -> Production
Requirement -> User Story -> Feature -> Production
so you get the idea. The feature is the entity that will bring functionality to production.
This entity feature uses a timeline called Release which indicates key events
To manage Release and Landscape together, a larger entity called Deployment Plan is created
which can be assigned to multiple projects. This ensures multiple projects can use the same Release timeline.
Features once created are moved to production following the Release Timelines
Features also contain transports that can be deployed to production
Before features can be deployed to production, tests need to be conducted. Test execution can be tracked at a step level
if results are not as expected then defects can be raised
Defects can be assigned to persons or teams
The test progress can be easily tracked by predefined reports
Analytics and Reporting
SAP Cloud ALM delivers a Project overview by default
The cards shown can be easily finetuned as per your needs which is also explained in detail here
On Top of that, there are multiple Analytical reports delivered out of the box
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