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Expert Knowledge on Digitalization & Automation of Business Processes

xSuite Blog

Expert Knowledge on Digitalization & Automation of Business Processes

SAP Certification Isn’t Optional. Here Are the Reasons Why.

Topic: SAP | S/4HANA

Blog article about SAP Certification

 

SAP Certification. It has a certain ring to it. It sounds official. Denotes quality. Feels important. And truth be told, that’s just what we believe – that our SAP-certified solutions are, in fact, higher quality. Which is why we’ve invested in SAP product certification. On the other hand, you might imagine that there’s a comparable solution – as good or maybe better – from a company that hasn’t gone for SAP certification. If you are in the throes of upgrading your existing SAP system or shooting for a new one, you’re probably tossing around questions of performance, compatibility, cost, and, ultimately, value. And you’re wondering: Should I make SAP certification an essential criterion for selecting our new applications?

We’re convinced that the answer is yes – especially if a harmonious SAP ecosystem is a priority for you. SAP certification offers some clear, immediate benefits like performance and compatibility. And, over time, it offers other, more intangible benefits that will help ensure your system remains viable and healthy. In other words, while the core promise of SAP’s product endorsement may be as simple as performance and compatibility – basically, the assurance that most things will go right technically – some aspects of certification also serve as value indicators on a larger scale, ultimately making your ecosystem more sustainable.

Before we get into those benefits, it’s important to understand what certification is and how it works. Through its Integration and Certification Center (ICC), SAP offers companies certification of individual products if they meet specific requirements. Customers, in turn, are assured of that value when integrating.

While generally denoting interoperability and performance, certification in some cases is even a prerequisite for connecting to SAP’s newer technologies. Here are the main benefits.

  • Compatibility: You may have had an old SAP on-premises system which, whenever add-ons were installed, was predictably unpredictable: The kinks just always needed to be worked out. This is no longer the case. Certification indicates that the developer has taken those kinks out of upgrading. In the certification process, SAP checks installation and uninstallation, support settings, and patches for bugs. Functional testing is provided by the producer, and SAP gives the green light for endorsement. Because your application has been certified as installation-ready, it can basically be installed or updated without requiring your IT team to spend a weekend tweaking it. In addition, say that you’ve decided to go for SAP’s SaaS product S/4HANA Cloud Extended Edition, and your existing add-ons are also certified for the new Cloud. Even if you’re presently interfacing the applications with products of an older generation, you won’t have problems integrating them into the new environment as well.
  • Security: Because of the importance of security in the cloud, SAP puts out a new release of S/4HANA every year. Therefore, though certifications are good for three years, if producers of add-ons wish to stay compatible with new versions, they must ensure their products are certified in tandem with annual releases. SAP’s certification process for the cloud consists of a mandatory security code scan (using the SAP Code Vulnerability Analyzer). This set of tests checks for weaknesses in the software at the code level, which is critical if you are using outdated function models or methods. If security gaps are identified, they are reported to the software producer to be fixed.
  • S/4HANA-capability: Conceivably, non-certified software could be used in conjunction with an on-premises S/4HANA system. However, if the S/4HANA Cloud Extended Edition or Private Edition is used, all software is installed at SAP’s data center or at AWS, Azure, Google, or other hyperscalers providing SAP infrastructure (IaaS). SAP categorically recommends the exclusive use of certified software, and, in the case of the cloud, is in a position to enforce this policy. When considering whether S/4HANA will be used only on-premises or more broadly in conjunction with cloud applications, you must take the birds-eye view. In your present selection of integrated products, ensure that functionality is not merely tied to certain present systems, but will remain viable when coupled with a range of intelligent future options. Choosing certified products is the smartest way to go, both when onboarding to SAP’s new S/4HANA system, and in order to ensure ongoing interoperability of all add-ons in potential hybrid settings.

xSuite is a prime example of a provider building high-performance add-ons for SAP – and of the value that certification offers customers. For example, by the time SAP’s cloud solutions were ready for integration with other products, xSuite’s cloud-compatible solutions were already set for connection. They were among the first to receive official certification – and official certification is required for onboarding to the SAP Cloud Extended Edition. xSuite’s entire Business Solutions package (for the P2P process) has been certified not only for compatibility with SAP ERP systems, but also with S/4HANA and S/4HANA Cloud. SAP’s endorsement was also granted for the xSuite Archive and its ILM and ArchiveLink functionality.

xSuite’s customers have found that their SAP-certified applications have retained their technical viability across major on-premises system transitions. In hybrid and cloud environments as well, customers can continue to exhaust intended software functionalities. If you have chosen SAP as your leading system, you will likely want to enhance functionality with integrated applications. Selecting products with the appropriate certification ensures that standards are met both for immediate use and in the future. Learn more about xSuite’s SAP certified solutions by going here.

Author

Andrea von Wurmb

Andrea von Wurmb has translated technical subject matter for xSuite’s customers since 2011. Originating from New York, Andrea’s writing draws on internationally focused studies and thirty years of work in East Asia and Europe. She writes on diverse topics in the world of xSuite, new technologies, and change management.

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