How SMEs can expand their business with the help of the Business Technology Platform?

This SAP blog has been written by Mostafa SHARAF and Maria Trinidad MARTINEZ GEA.

Many SMEs are running their businesses with the help of the ERP Cloud – SAP Business ByDesign (ByD), however we certainly realize that many of customers’ requirements are beyond any ERP capabilities.

In addition, looking at today’s challenges in many aspects, decision makers cannot only depend on a capable system that enables their business effectively and resiliently, but also to sustain and fuel rapid growth.

Hence the main question that comes in mind: How to overcome the unprecedented market challenges? How to adapt towards new business trends? How can you seamlessly integrate your ERP system to other solutions, since this is becoming no longer a choice for many SMEs!

The key to overcome such challenges lies in operating a resilient system that can offer great extensibility options. While extensibility matters, Integration is fast becoming the number-one strategic priority for organizations in the digital age.

Looking at SAP Business ByDesign, indeed it is designed as an open solution, where it offers several options to extend and as well integrate with other solutions.

Below you can see the different options for extensibility and integration with the SAP ByDesign:

With the help of the SAP Cloud Platform, SAP ByDesign customers can build innovative applications that can speak today’s digital technologies such as IoT, Machine learning, Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, RPA, …etc…

In fact, there are 1000s of customers and partners around the world using the SAP Cloud Platform to build application extensions and seamlessly integrate landscapes. Now, the capabilities of this platform as a service (PaaS) are a key part of SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP).

It is worth to mention that digital interactions are the de facto norm for collaboration. Ambient and embedded intelligence is becoming a reality offering a great opportunity for organizations to become intelligent enterprises.

Let’s for example imagine if we are able to build new sets of cloud-based apps using the side-by-side approach where apps can run independently from the backend, whilst extending the digital core in SAP ByD. Thus, these loosely coupled apps will be able to push/pull data to/from an ByD system thanks to the help of SAP BTP, and with the least possible dependency.

Such kind of apps can be offered on subscription based model, which will certainly generate new recurring revenue streams, not to mention the invaluable opportunities to open new routes to markets…etc.

Well! we might all wonder what is exactly BTP? It is actually the platform for the Intelligent Enterprise. Customers can achieve agility, business value, and continual innovation through integration, data to value, and extensibility of all SAP and third-party applications and data assets.

As SAP Cloud Platform evolves, it is considered one of the core pillars powering BTP and has indeed become a key element within SAP broader platform offering, rather than a stand-alone offering. Its strong integration and extension capabilities are now available as services that run on SAP.

Powering SAP BTP logo

One of those great capabilities is now called SAP Integration Suite (CPI), which was recently recognized by Gartner in its 2020 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Integration Platform as a Service (EiPaaS) and Magic Quadrant for Multiexperience Development Platforms respectively.

The SAP CPI is an open and modular integration platform as a service (iPaaS) supporting your enterprise-wide integration needs for both SAP and non-SAP integration scenarios. Indeed it enables your enterprise to seamlessly integrate and connect on-premise and cloud-based applications, processes, and people with speed and ease.

Below diagram indicates the tremendous business opportunities for customers by integrating SAP ByD to other applications or systems whether for marketing, e-commerce, or service field…etc, be it on-premise or on-cloud thanks to the help of SAP CPI.

SAP ByD provides more than 300 standard web services that can be leveraged to integrate any kind of 3rd party software.

In the following quick demo, we going to showcase a proof of concept on how SMEs running SAP ByD, can connect to an E-commerce solution like Shopify for B2C or B2B scenarios through an integration scenario about Sales Orders, that is built on top of SAP CPI:

This is the high level diagram of the integration scenario between Shopify and SAP ByD:This is how my Shopify store looks like, along with the open orders:This is the integration flow based CPI of Shopify store and SAP ByD:This is the business area of Sales Orders in SAP ByD, showing a sales order coming from Shopify:In the following detailed demonstration, we going to explain how the integration scenario between SAP ByD and Shopify was built scenarios on top of SAP CPI:

Having such proof of concept, partners and customers would realize that this integration scenario’s is a product agnostic, as the only part dependent on the backend is the one that touches the backend itself!

In the following quick demonstration, we going to explain how the same integration scenario could be used between SAP S/4HANA Cloud and Shopify, in order to prove the above mentioned conclusion:

This is the high level diagram of the integration scenario between Shopify and SAP S/4HANA:

This is the integration flow based CPI of Shopify store and SAP S/4HANA Cloud:

This is the Sales Order’s business area in SAP S/4HANA, showing a sales order coming from Shopify store:

Now It is interesting to see that two above mentioned integration scenarios (ByD & S/4HANA Cloud) are basically the same but as stated before, the only difference is in the part that touches the backend, as shown below diagram:

Learn more about SAP Integration Suite

To learn more about this topic, please read the blog – SAP Cloud Platform Integration for SAP Business ByDesign webinar , which provides a set of presentations and as well a recorded session on the SAP Cloud Platform Integration for SAP Business by Design. In this blog you have an overview on how you can develop SAP Business ByDesign integration scenarios.

In addition, there is another blog – SAP Cloud Platform Integration for SMBs, samples, that provides several integration samples and as well a complete step by step guide with instructions starting with the creation of a CPI trial tenant and going over a set of very simple scenarios demonstrating how to connect to your SAP ByDesign tenant.

To learn more about SAP ByDesign oData API, please read this blog – SAP Business ByDesign – OData API Examples.

To learn more about SAP ByDesign oData API, please read this blog – SAP Business ByDesign – OData API Examples.