Last month, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and SAP CEO Bill McDermott unveiled how our companies are expanding our longstanding partnership to include a series of cloud and productivity solutions that drive increased business value for customers and partners. This includes plans to deliver broad support for the SAP HANA platform deployed on Microsoft Azure, simplify work through new integrations between Microsoft Office 365 and cloud solutions from SAP, and provide enhanced management and security for custom SAP Fiori apps.
Accelerating digital transformation in the cloud
We know that enterprises who rely on SAP enterprise applications are faced with many important decisions as they plan their digital business transformation with advanced technologies such as the cloud, big data, and advanced analytics applications. There are cost considerations, compliance and regulatory factors, operational agility demands, productivity needs, as well as availability and scalability requirements.
What makes this news so important is that our enhanced partnership with SAP helps your business address all of these factors. Microsoft Azure offers a reliable and secure cloud infrastructure platform that enables businesses to quickly deploy SAP solutions in the cloud such that your business can quickly simplify infrastructure management, improve time to market, and lower costs.
We are empowering businesses with more choice and flexibility for your SAP application deployments—ultimately giving you the ability to quickly innovate and disrupt in today’s dynamic marketplace.
Addressing your core business challenges
Let us explore more deeply how this expanded partnership will help your business use the cloud to drive innovation, agility, and enable new ways to work.
First, Microsoft is unique in our approach, providing choice across public, private and hybrid environments. SAP HANA, by its very nature, is a disruptive technology because most legacy hardware systems cannot run it. Also, with SAP making SAP HANA its platform to support their entire SAP software landscape moving forward, companies must consider a new infrastructure for supporting their SAP landscapes. While SAP HANA appliances and SAP HANA TDI have always been options, both hybrid and full cloud options are an undeniable value proposition that are likely to become predominant in the near future. Regardless of an organization’s initial decision on method, given the cloud value proposition, it is likely that all roads will ultimately lead to cloud, allowing you to take advantage of on-demand resources while maximizing the value of your Microsoft and SAP investments. You can reduce total cost of ownership by moving your on-premise SAP infrastructures to the cloud, reducing hardware costs, and saving OPEX budget through the subscription-based deployment of Azure.
With SAP HANA on Azure, you will be able to optimize your operations to deliver mission-critical applications on a global scale with enterprise-grade security and compliance. Integration with solutions such as IoT, device gateway, connected field service, predictive maintenance, and business productivity is also more achievable with deployment of SAP on Microsoft Azure.
In addition, the ability for your business users to evaluate new technology becomes easier as some of the new SAP HANA environments can be deployed in literally minutes from established virtual machine images.
The combination of Microsoft and SAP solutions is also the foundation of productivity within many enterprises. New integrations will combine cloud solutions from SAP with Office 365 capabilities to empower your employees with greater productivity, including access to Microsoft technologies like Cortana Intelligence Suite and Power BI, bringing new digital user experiences to SAP workloads.
It is exciting to see that early adopters of this new offering, such as companies like Rockwell Automation, have already experienced the benefits of deploying SAP HANA on Azure. Many of our customers with SAP implementations are successfully deploying an entire landscape—such as development, test, sandbox, QA, and production—on Microsoft Azure. They are also moving older legacy archived systems from UNIX/Oracle or DB2 to Windows and SQL Server on Microsoft Azure. Another popular use case is to use Azure as a disaster recovery data center and use Azure Site Recovery as a cost effective solution to provide disaster recovery benefits.
Empowering a new era of innovation
As we think about the Industry 4.0 breakthrough that is happening today, this is truly an era when industries will be re-made and new ecosystems will be created. In this new era, the opportunities ahead are transformative and disruptive — but only if you are in a position to be agile and forward-thinking. This new level of integration between Microsoft and SAP solutions will empower your business to have the flexibility it needs not just to grow, but to thrive in today’s new digital era.