Earlier this week, SAP hosted SAP TechEd, a virtual conference geared towards SAP partners. The event featured updates and announcements in the SAP partner ecosystem, including expanded low-code and no-code options, enhanced cloud capabilities, and a new free tier model of the SAP Business Technology Platform (BTP).
In his keynote address, Juergen Mueller, CTO of SAP, laid out how SAP is working to continue enabling its partners and therefore help its customers tackle large-scale business challenges. Mueller specifically highlighted the need for businesses to scale during the COVID-19 pandemic, become carbon-neutral enterprises, manage supply chains, and leverage to improve business processes.
“Many leaders have realized how important it is that processes within the company help people get their job done in the best possible way,” he said during the keynote.
Here are some of the key highlights and events from SAP TechEd 2021.
New Heights for Low-Code, No-Code
There is no denying that many organizations are seeing a shortage is skilled employees necessary for success. In the 2021 Pulse of the SAP Customer survey, we asked our members about their top technology challenges. While the top two most popular responses focused on challenges with integrations and upgrades, the third main challenge was a lack of internal skill to manage products.
A staggering 41% of ASUG members said that they do not have enough skilled staff to keep up with changing technologies, and 25% of respondents indicated that more advanced and varied expertise is needed. This problem is stretching beyond the ASUG community and SAP ecosystem. The National Association of Business Economics recently reported that 47% of the respondents to its Business Conditions Survey reported a shortage of skilled workers in the third quarter of this year.
With that in mind, SAP has been expanding its low-code, no-code capabilities, especially with the SAP BTP. During his keynote, Mueller unveiled some new low-code, no-code updates to the SAP BTP that will not only help organizations develop apps easier, but will also assist organizations as they continue integrating their business processes.
“Citizen and professional coders alike can now increase their productivity and innovate at scale,” Mueller said.
Three specific low-code, no-code solutions were announced during the SAP TechEd 2021 keynote. The first was the inclusion of SAP AppGyver, a no-code app development platform that SAP recently acquired, into the ecosystem. Mueller was joined by SAP AppGyver Director and Team Lead Marko Lehtimaki to discuss how this development is beneficial to partners. Lehtimaki noted that visual programming is “the next step in the evolution of programming.” He also said that no-code has evolved beyond creating “baby apps,” and can now be used to “create mission-critical, pixel-perfect solutions without any writing of code.”
SAP also unveiled the SAP Business Application Studio, where professional developers can “support citizen developers,” when it comes to building solutions and integrations in the SAP ecosystem. Finally, SAP also announced a new RPA-based no-code solution called SAP Process Automation.
“With this unified low-code, no-code offering, we’ve bridged the gap between professional and non-technical developers,” Mueller said.
Simplifying Cloud Migrations
SAP TechEd 2021 also featured a few announcements focused on cloud adoption, including SAP Business Warehouse (BW) Bridge. This solution specifically is set up to make the process of moving into a public easier for customers. SAP BW Bridge allows SAP BW users to migrate their data from SAP BW to the SAP Data Warehouse solution. This allows businesses to move their data into the cloud.
“This is a big step for our customers,” David Wascom, senior vice president of executive programs at ASUG, said in an analyst session immediately following the keynote address. Wascom noted that ASUG often hears from its members that one of the biggest barriers to completing a cloud migration project is not having employees with the skills required to make a project like this run smoothly and on time. This solution will help customers make this jump without necessitating the deep technical skills and experience needed for such a project. Wascom also noted that the SAP BW Bridge also eliminates a lot of the risk associated with cloud projects like this.