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IBM Entry Cloud Clears a Path for SAP Users


Illustration by Jon Han

The IT landscape can be challenging. Companies must quickly change course to adapt to changing demands, but they often run into the roadblocks of complex and inflexible IT environments. Challenged by the increased functionality of SAP products and interconnected business processes, many IT managers are looking to better organize their operations. To do that, some are turning to the cloud.

The cloud can help companies become more agile and responsive while reducing IT costs and complexity through improved workload optimization and service delivery. Cloud computing is a dynamic infrastructure solution, making applications and computing power available on demand. It’s highly optimized to achieve more with less, using virtualization, standardization and automation.

IBM leads the way in cloud computing offerings for SAP, including the SAP CRM Rapid-Deployment Solution on IBM SmartCloud*. SAP has certified IBM to deliver and manage implementations of SAP applications via a hosted delivery model and IBM SmartCloud platforms. The certification enables the IBM SmartCloud platform to provide enterprises around the world with cloud-managed services for the entire SAP solution portfolio. IBM SmartCloud solutions help provide organizations with the flexibility they need to focus on business instead of managing IT systems. IBM and SAP solutions capitalize on IBM’s comprehensive portfolio of cloud computing offerings to provide integrated and seamless management across architectures and delivery models. Many of IBM’s cloud solutions for SAP are available through subscription-based hosting, which is a pay-as-you-go model.

The IBM Entry Cloud Configuration for SAP Solutions on Power* product is one of the newest cloud offerings from IBM, providing a first step into on-premise, self-managed SAP cloud computing. IBM Entry Cloud offers an easy way to implement use case scenarios that operate a SAP cloud environment, including SAP Instance Provisioning, SAP Rename and SAP Post Processing. By leveraging IBM and SAP management tools, the configuration opens up cloud computing for an array of businesses currently running SAP landscapes.

 

Using the Cloud to Work Smarter

SAP environments offer numerous advantages. However, pressures on cost, timing and expertise are squeezing many IT managers. Not only do managers want to maximize their investments and boost business process innovation, they need to use secure, compliant, managed services and hosting to meet business requirements. IBM’s cloud offerings can help IT managers work smarter and faster, reduce infrastructure costs of SAP landscapes and help manage the complexity of those landscapes.

“The IBM SmartCloud solution provides clients with control and visibility over their SAP landscape.”
—Xavier De Romagna, global product manager, SmartCloud for SAP Applications

IBM’s cloud offerings reduce costs because SAP Basis and DBA workloads are covered in the service cost and SAP service quality is monitored for production-level instances. Clients can save money by managing the service requests themselves.

The cloud offers clients a way to optimize, too. Typically, deployments of SAP systems on a dedicated server don’t achieve more than 20 percent of average CPU consumption over a full shift, but at peak times they can take 100 percent of CPU, memory or I/O capacity, says Xavier De Romagna, global product manager, SmartCloud for SAP Applications. “Virtualization is helping clients consolidate nonproduction instances, thus eliminating redundancies and optimizing the system landscape. The IBM SmartCloud solution provides clients with control and visibility over their SAP landscape.”

Moving to the cloud gives clients innovative solutions for SAP from the start of their project through long-term support. IBM SmartCloud for SAP Applications on SCE+ provides clients with Life Cycle as a Service (LCaaS) for their SAP landscapes. “LCaaS is an unprecedented single-life-spanning offer that provides a consistent, rapid-start environment with all tools and methods available from day one for the client’s SAP project,” De Romagna says. LCaaS is the winning combination of IBM Global Technology Services’ Managed Application Services on SmartCloud Enterprise+ and cost-effective, cloud-based hosting. It draws on IBM Global Business Services experience with SAP practice innovations, accelerators and implementation, and IBM Application Management Services support for SAP.

Several options are available for clients to leverage IBM SmartCloud for their SAP landscapes. “IBM SmartCloud provides the client multiple deployment options for private, public and hybrid clouds to meet their business needs,” De Romagna says.

Once a client commits to improving its operation, some operating analysis is required. IBM looks at how clients are using harmonization, consolidation, virtualization and systems management. The analysis also considers how a client is using SAP landscapes, the current operations and what the client wants to achieve.

Once those areas are assessed, IBM helps clients find the best cloud solution. “We are SAP-centric,” says Wolfgang Knobloch, global offering manager, SAP Cloud Offerings, IBM Global Technology Services. “We’re talking to clients about SAP capacity and workloads, not bits and bytes. Clients have a comfort level due to IBM’s experience. We’re supplying SAP application value to the clients.”

 

Shirley S. Savage is a Maine-based freelance writer. Shirley can be reached at savage.shirley@comcast.net.



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