Migrate your On-Premise SAP BPM applications to SAP Build Process Automation – Part 1
SAP Process Orchestration as the on -premise process automation solution consists of Business Process Management based on BPMN 2.0,Business Rules Management and Process Integration. Process Orchestration has been widely adopted by customers across industries and line of business solutions to automate or extend processes. The solution has been in the market since 2008 and some of the major enhancements released by SAP over a period of time made Process Orchestration as the preferred on premise solution for integration and orchestration of business processes and applications.
SAP has introduced workflow / process automation capabilities in SAP Business Technology Platform since 2017. The cloud journey begins with Workflow and Business Rules , but over a period of time SAP consolidated all process automation services under one offering called SAP Build Process Automation. In the last 6 years SAP has been releasing many capabilities enabling customers to automate processes, tasks ,model decisions and enable process visibility. SAP has not only provided the services but also process or automation content across various line of business solutions. SAP Build Process Automation as a low-code/no-code solution enable customers to model and deploy processes to automate various scenarios.
SAP has announced the end of maintenance and extended maintenance timeline of NetWeaver AS JAVA and this is applicable for Process Orchestration too. All SAP NetWeaver BPM/BRM customers need to look for a migration path and SAP Build Process Automation is the natural choice in SAP Business Technology Platform. SAP Integration Suite is providing a migration path for all Process Integration content from SAP Process Orchestration.
SAP Build Process Automation
SAP has released Build Process Automation as the successor product of SAP Workflow Management and SAP Robotic Process Automation by combining the power of these two solutions with a citizen developer experience. Build Process Automation consists of Process,Decision,Visibility and Automation capabilities in a low-code/no-code design time environment with integrated tooling and life cycle management. It is part of SAP Build Portfolio enabling customers to consume the key services like SAP Build Work Zone to provide digital workplace for business users and SAP Build Apps to model and deploy no-code applications.
SAP Process Orchestration provides rich set of capabilities to integrate and orchestrate processes across systems and applications. It evolved over a period of time with these capabilities enable customers to build mission critical applications.Business Process Management and Business Rules Management capabilities are used to automate processes as part of extending the core processes delivered by SAP. As part of the cloud journey, SAP build Process Automation is the natural choice for customers to migrate all their on premise investments in BPM/BRM.
It really makes sense to understand the key value propositions and differences between on premise BPM and cloud based Build Process Automation solutions.
SAP Build Process Automation – Value Proposition
|Low-Code/No-Code Design time||Citizen developer experience enabling Business or LOB IT to model processes and forms.|
|Pro Code development.||Pro code development of Workflows or UIs or Services using SAP Business Application studio.|
|Integrated services and capabilities||Different capabilities but well integrated enabling customers to focus on process modeling and application logic without spending additional effort on integration.|
|Process and Task automation||Provides human centric automation based on workflows and automation of tasks using bots providing integrated tooling experience.|
|Integration to SAP systems, on-premise and cloud applications.||Consuming APIs and Events published by SAP Line of Business.|
|Integration with Task Center||Single Inbox for all approval tasks from different SAP Line of Business applications and SAP Build Process Automation.|
|Process transparency and analytics.||Out of the box process visibility and transparency.|
|Project life cycle management.||Versioning of project artifacts and integrated life cycle management.|
|Content Store||SAP Line of Business Application specific process and automation content.|
|Part of SAP Build Portfolio||Integrated experience with SAP Build Apps and SAP Build Work Zone.|
SAP BPM to Build Process Automation – Migration path
A process orchestration application consists of Processes, Rules, Integrations, Documents , User Interfaces, Business logic, Persistence and analytical capabilities. NetWeaver Portal is a single entry point for business users to access various applications to create an approval process or complete their tasks or monitoring processes.Customers have investments in all these areas and it is good to an overview of the corresponding services in SAP Business Technology Platform.The below table describe the services to be used in Business Technology Platform as part of migrating the current Process Orchestration solutions.
|NetWeaver AS Java Solutions||Business Technology Platform Services|
|Business Process Management||SAP Build Process Automation|
|Business Rules Management||SAP Build Process Automation|
|Visual Composer||SAP Build Apps, Fiori Elements|
|SAP UI5||SAP UI5|
|CAF/EJB,JPA||CAP & SAP HANA Cloud|
|Document Management||SAP Document Management|
|Integration||SAP Integration Suite|
|Portal||SAP Build Work Zone|
|Analytics (BW integration)||SAP Analytics Cloud|
|NetWeaver Developer Studio(NWDS)||SAP Business Application Studio|
|NetWeaver Development Infrastructure (DTR,CBS,CTS)||
SAP Build Process Automation provides most of the BPM capabilities available in SAP Process Orchestration. The Processes can be implemented in cloud either using no-code based Process Builder or pro-code based Business Application Studio depending on the use case and complexity. SAP Build Process Automation may provide BPMN based process model import in the future and it will help customers to reuse their existing on-premise BPMN models.System centric process orchestration can be also done using SAP Integration Suite. All human centric processes, decisions and task automation can be achieved using SAP Build Process Automation.
SAP Business Rules Management provides Decision orchestration based various business conditions. Decisions is the functional equivalent in SAP Build Process Automation to orchestrate rules.The authoring experience of Business Rules has simplified in Process Automation and business users can manage decisions without the involvement of IT.
SAP BPM customers using Webdynpro , Visual Composer and SAP UI5 as the different UI technologies to build process start and task UIs. SAP UI5 is also the leading UI technology in SAP Business Technology Platform and supported in SAP Build Process Automation. It is possible to reuse the SAP UI5 components from NetWeaver by adapting the service binding, API usage and data models. All Visual Composer and Webdynpro UIs need to be developed using SAP UI5 or SAP Build Apps or SAP Fiori Elements. Apart from this SAP Build Process Automation provides a no-code Forms to build simple approval forms without any coding.
SAP BPM provides out of the box Webservice and RFC/BAPI integration with SAP and non SAP applications. This enables customers to use the underlying data types, model Rules, UIs based on these data models.There is also reliable messaging using the AEX adapter of Process Integration.
SAP Build Process Automation supports REST/ OData APIs exposed by SAP and non SAP applications. All other protocols like SOAP, BAPI requires SAP Integration Suite to consume APIs.The Automation capability in SAP Process Automation provides a BAPI SDK to consume BAPIs from SAP applications.
SAP BPM provides OData services to consume Processes and Tasks. A similar set of REST/OData APIs are available in SAP Build Process Automation to consume the processes and tasks. Access to these APIs are secured using OAuth 2.0.
SAP Process Orchestration customers using BPM and BRM for human centric process orchestration use case can plan their transformation journey to cloud and build their new solutions using SAP Build Process Automation.
As a cloud service SAP Build Process Automation delivers product increments on a bi-weekly basis and a strong product roadmap. There could be functional gaps in the current version of SAP Build Process Automation but these gaps will be removed over a period of time. Please go through the roadmap and what’s new section to get an overview of the upcoming releases.
In my next blog of this series I have provided detailed analysis of on-premise BPM capabilities mapped to SAP Build Process Automation.