7 Myths of SAP Licensing Optimization

SAP licensing optimization is always a complicated activity for many organizations. The various issues and/or problems faced in managing the SAP licenses, makes it hard to stay compliant with the SAP agreements. More than 80% of businesses are struggling to maintain numbers correctly – they are either over or under utilizing their licensing assets.

To optimally use SAP licensing optimization, many business owners even utilize optimization techniques and automated solutions.

It is really possible to automate the SAP Licensing Audit? Can this be handled by Bots or readymade on-the shelf solutions?

Sadly, most are using an immature optimization technique or solutions.

In this article, I am speaking about the most common myths of SAP licensing optimization, which may help you to understand more about the licensing optimization and the right ways to do it.

Myth 1: SAP Licenses Can Be Easily Optimized With applications developed using Bots/automation, or On-The-Shelf Solutions

If you think you can optimize your SAP licenses with on-the-shelf solutions, then you are not moving in the right direction. Licensing contracts have different forms and varied terms and conditions. From organization to organization and contract to contract, terms are never the same.

The right way to evaluate and optimize the licenses is by analyzing the contracts fully and then forming a customized evaluation ruleset. Does the solution that you have chosen offer this?  Always ask, “Is the evaluation or optimization carried out on my SAP licenses based on my contracts?”

Myth 2: “Maintain” Access Is Always Professional and “Display” Is Always Limited Professional

6 out of 10 organizations believe this. Take out your contract and read it again!

Does it say that Limited Professional User or Employee User can only perform display only operations? I am sure, it doesn’t. Even Limited Professional or Employee Type users can perform specific activities including maintenance. Hence, not every maintenance activity is Professional. Don’t trust the applications that says this without knowing your contracts.

Myth 3: My Roles Are Correctly Maintained, and the Licensing Assignment Is Carried Out According To the Role Assignment

It is amazing that your roles are correctly maintained and the licensing assignment is carried out according to the roles assigned.

However, the SAP licensing classification is done according to the usage, not the assignment. Read the below extract from the SAP web site:

“To be able to measure all users of your SAP installation clearly and exactly, you must classify your users in accordance with the current use and the underlying price list before every system measurement.”

Here you can get full information.

If you are carrying out classification according to the assignment, optimization is a necessity for you. In fact, you need it at earliest!

Myth 4: In the Previous Audit, the Available Vs Utilized Licenses Were Adjusted and Handled!

However, how did this adjustment happen? Was it based on the availability of the licenses or utilization?

Did you purchase any new licenses for this adjustment? If yes, then how well are these licenses helping you with the adjustment? You need to read and understand the whole report to know the adjustment basis. As mentioned, if you have used an on-the-shelf application, you need to think again!

Myth 5: We Purchased A Solution Which Helped Us Adjust The Users Across Our System. The Delivered Report Was Correct!

While this can actually be the case, you need to be sure that your partner is not specifically highlighting the correctness of the report. You should check whether the software differentiated the licensing categories in ECC and BW/BI or CRM systems or not.

Many on-the-shelf solutions only compare the most common and highest categories such as Limited Professional, Develop, or Professional.

SAP has more than 150 licensing categories. Your users can actually fall into a category that may cost less than what was originally suggested by your on-the-shelf software.

Myth 6: You Don’t Have To Worry About Indirect Usage With SAP Process Integration Or Process Orchestration System

SAP process integration or process orchestration system only helps you to integrate solutions and synchronize data between various systems. This means that both PI and PO facilitate hassle-free integration of two applications – SAP or not.

Procuring SAP licenses for PI/PO instance doesn’t indicate that any third-party application connected to SAP PI/PO will be free from indirect usage. You still need to procure additional licenses for this usage.

It is recommended to check SAP’s new indirect compliance usage guidelines that speaks in-detailed about the 9 different document types and the pricing models. If you have any questions here, reach out to me.

 Myth 7: Our Last Licensing Audit Was Just A Year Ago. I Don’t Need Another One Now

It is great that you got through last year’s audit but this doesn’t guarantee you don’t need an audit now. Multiple factors decide whether you need an audit or not.

Many of our clients have had a licensing audit just 3 to 4 months after the previous one. So, an audit done one year ago can’t assure that you don’t need it again.

Tip: Check if you are using the right solution to measure your licensing needs. Ensure that you are only being billed for the Bill of Materials utilized.

Conclusion

SAP licensing optimization is not a single-handed or one-day task. Further, it is definitely not a 100% automated activity. The process involves licensing experts who evaluate your contracts, build an evaluation ruleset, and perform an audit. Without this, it is not possible to achieve 100% accurate results. You may end up spending more money than required.

Always question yourself before choosing any solution. Consider these seven myths and then take the decision.

If you still need help, we can help you. Tell us your requirements and we’ll get back to you with a plan.