When you build a house, it is a good idea to start with the foundation and then work it from there.
With SAP pushing the “RISE with SAP S/4HANA” message so forcefully, it could easily be interpreted as a clear EITHER/OR situation. Either you get on board with the RISE program or you stick to the way you have traditionally been running SAP for as long as it is technically possible. The divider is very much how you approach the foundation of your build.
“SAP RISE with SAP S/4HANA” is the transformation as a service package that helps modernize your platform infrastructure by embracing Cloud as the vehicle for your next-generation ERP applications. At face value, it entails handing over the responsibility for managing operations to SAP, but as an alternative, you can choose to remain in control, while still operating on a cloud model.
What can be confusing is the terminology, as Public Cloud comes with different connotations depending on who is delivering the message. In the SAP RISE world, you can choose between Public Cloud and Private Cloud as “flavours” of SAP S/4HANA Cloud. The latter technically branches out from the On-Premise application stem, but if we focus on the trail down to the foundation, we find that both solutions rest on hyperscaler infrastructure.
In the world outside SAP RISE, this is known as the Public Cloud. The Private Cloud on the other hand is the kind of infrastructure service provided by someone like Tietoevry to run your SAP environments in one of our data centres. Clearly, we have a situation where there is bound to be confusion when discussing this topic unless you are crystal clear on what “Cloud” you are referring to. Going forward in this piece “Public Cloud” is synonymous with the hyperscaler offering a-k-a Public Cloud Infrastructure.
Not depicted in the drawing is the RISE with SAP S/4HANA Private Edition – Customer Datacenter Option (or PE-CDC) where “cloud” is used loosely to include what is essentially an Any Prem-deployment.
Judging by market trends it is clear the future is in the public cloud for the majority of companies, and we would argue that the number will grow as the public cloud providers expand their sovereign cloud offerings to meet specific demands for managing data within specific borders. But as we are not there yet, there is clearly a demand for options when it comes to hosting SAP solutions.
A recent survey among 434 companies in the German-speaking SAP User Group (DSAG) concludes:
“As before, on-premise systems remain extremely important, even if cloud solutions are gaining on them. This confirms a trend that has been apparent for several years now: the future of IT is hybrid!”
Whether you can extrapolate this statement to other markets might be up for debate, but regardless, the transition to the cloud for core business applications might take a while, and there is a need for options in the meanwhile.
At Tietoevry we have engineered several foundations to be able to cater to different customer needs. At one end of the spectrum, we have our Tietoevry Dynamic Landscape (TDL) offering for running your SAP solutions in our own state-of-the-art datacenters and at the other end, we offer the SAP on Public Cloud solution where we manage your Azure or AWS environment for SAP. In addition, we also offer services in an “SAP RISE Private Cloud Edition”-context for those functions that can be managed by customers and partners. Collectively we refer to these different foundations simply as SAP Platforms.
A common denominator for these services is the fundamental skillset in SAP Basis with the addition of Cloud Architecture. At Tietoevry these skills are often combined with individual advisors which benefit our customers when moving from the Private Cloud to the Public Cloud. In total, we have around 1200 global SAP specialists bringing the full package of consulting and application management services on top of these technology-related offerings.
Regardless of whether you prefer the Private Cloud or the Public Cloud as the foundation for your build, we at Tietoevry have you covered. And if you are unsure what is the best fit for your SAP building, feel free to reach out and let us explore the options together.
Antti is the Head of SAP Platforms at Tietoevry. He has over 20 years of experience, starting from technical roles via global service delivery to consulting public cloud in a variety of industries. Antti likes to say he has “done it all”; meaning he likes to be surprised about the things he does not yet know. The future is in the public cloud, and the future is now.