Unless you have been out of the office for the last three years, you have certainly been exposed to RISE with SAP. I’ve talked about it in my ASUG Executive Exchange Digest articles in the past, but mostly in the context of leveraging your negotiating power with SAP regarding software licensing. While this is true, it isn’t all that RISE with SAP can or should be.

The main driver behind RISE with SAP is to move SAP customers into a modern, cloud-based software solution that supports SAP’s intelligent enterprise philosophy. The combination of end-to-end process visibility and management, real-time data and analytics for decision-making, and the agility to respond to and lead market innovation is a compelling end-state and difficult to argue against.

Unfortunately, the path from “as-is” to “to-be” isn’t nearly as clear as the intelligent enterprise vision itself. Just signing a RISE with SAP contract doesn’t magically transform your business—there’s still a lot of work to do.

How does RISE with SAP help customers manage this transformation work? Unfortunately, up until now, the program has not been nearly as helpful in the implementation phase as you might expect. As RISE with SAP turns three, SAP has released some significant changes to the program to help customers find clarity and hopefully make this workload easier.

Earlier this month, SAP announced the RISE with SAP Migration and Modernization program as an expansion of the existing RISE with SAP offering. This expansion impacts customers in two areas that are worth highlighting.

Where Are the Tools?

Believe it or not, SAP has had a set of tools and methodologies available to support RISE with SAP migration and adoption for some time now; the challenge has been how to find them. With RISE, SAP focused more on the partner ecosystem, enabling them to use these tools and methodologies to help their customers migrate to the cloud and SAP S/4HANA. With the release of the new Migration and Modernization program, SAP has introduced a level of transparency and clarity that is certainly refreshing but also a little surprising compared to other SAP offerings.

You don’t have to take my word for it. Spend a few minutes on the RISE with SAP website, and you’ll find a wealth of information on the tools and services available under the new Migration and Modernization program. This information is presented clearly, based on your current situation (e.g., on-premises SAP ECC, on-premises SAP S/4HANA, etc.), and perhaps most surprisingly, it clearly indicates whether it’s included in the program or is an add-on service or capability.

Show Me the Money

SAP has also introduced a couple of incentives as part of the RISE with SAP updates that are worth a look. The first is “store credit” to help offset the cost of migration. The details on exactly how this works aren’t clearly explained on the website, but if you sign a RISE or GROW with SAP (RISE’s public cloud little brother) contract in 2024, you qualify for a credit based on the average annual contract value of your existing SAP ECC of on-premises SAP S/4HANA software. I’m sure your account executive will be more than happy to review the details of how this credit works.

The second incentive is called SAP Safekeeper. This is a service that on-premises SAP S/4HANA customers can buy to extend support for their current version of SAP S/4HANA beyond the planned end date to allow customers to operate on the old version during their upgrade and migration. SAP Safekeeper can potentially mitigate some of the costs associated with customer-specific maintenance that would otherwise apply. Again, a great discussion to have with your account executive.

What Is the Punchline?

When I was first introduced to the RISE with SAP program, I worried it was better for SAP than for their customers. Over time, I’ve realized that for those customers at the right point in their SAP journey, the RISE with SAP program can be a tremendous catalyst for modernization. With the new Migration and Modernization enhancements to RISE, I’m sure SAP hopes this is now true for more of their existing customers.

My advice this month is to spend some time on the RISE with SAP website and talk to your account executive to see if the solution makes sense for your company now. Please share what you learn—I’d love to hear your stories and see how we can help the ASUG Executive Exchange community move forward together!

Exciting ASUG Executive Exchange Events This Year

I want to close this month by sharing more about our ASUG Executive Exchange in-person events later this year. We are working hard to plan two experiences that promise to be “can’t-miss” opportunities for ASUG Executive Exchange members.

ASUG Executive Exchange Day at SAP Sapphire & ASUG Annual Conference

As part of SAP Sapphire & ASUG Annual Conference, we will be hosting an executives-only session the day before the conference starts. The ASUG Executive Exchange session will be held on the afternoon of June 3 and will extend into the evening as we transition from learning to social.

We are still finalizing the agenda but have confirmed that Josh Greenbaum and John Reed will be back for another round of “the analysts’ view” of the SAP ecosystem. Last year, we had an engaging conversation with Josh and John, and this year promises to be even better.

ASUG Executive Exchange Summer Summit

We will host our annual ASUG Executive Exchange Summit in late summer this year. The location is still being finalized, but I can share that those under consideration are excellent. We will have a great couple of days of learning, sharing, and fellowship, and as soon as details are confirmed, you will receive a special invitation to attend.

ASUG Executive Exchange in-person events are limited attendance events. They’re designed only for ASUG customer member executives running SAP software. We want to support the free flow of ideas and challenges among customers, so SAP and partners are only allowed into sessions under special circumstances. Don’t miss your chance to be a part of the important discussions at these events—be sure to sign up early to get your seat at the table!

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