The SAP Integration Advisory Methodology solves the biggest problem that you face in Business-to-Business (B2B), Administration-to-Administration (A2A), and Business-to-Government (B2G) integration: multiple business partners who use different industry standards like UN/EDIFACT, SAP IDoc and ASC X12, to name a few, must come together.
Each new standard will create a need for a new interface that facilitates this integration. With this comes the need to map messages between systems to accommodate the diverse representations correctly. For example, a purchase order number might be referred to as PO_number in system A, while the same entry is referred to as PurchaseOrderNum in system B. In practice, accomplishing this goal manually on a larger scale is extremely time-intensive and prone to errors.
In this lesson, we will discuss:
- The purpose and value behind the SAP Integration Advisory Methodology.
- The steps on how to create B2B mappings using a type system, MIGs, MaGs and export runtime artifacts for use within CI or PI.
What Can You Do With It?
The SAP Integration Advisory Methodology capability within SAP Integration Suite is a cloud application that helps you to simplify and streamline the implementation flow of your B2B, A2A and B2G integration processes. It uses a crowd-based machine learning approach to help you create integration content effortlessly. Tests indicate that you can speed up the content creation to deployment process by almost 60% using the SAP Integration Advisory Methodology capability. You can also manage and share your content, and leverage the content shared by other users of the application with similar business needs. With this, the SAP Integration Advisory Methodology capability grows even more powerful over time.
How Does It Work ?
With the SAP Integration Advisory Methodology, you have a library of type systems that you can use as a starting point to:
- Create a new message implementation guideline (MIG).
- Create mapping guidelines (MAG) to map the standard you use in your business system to that of your business partner's.
- Generate runtime artifacts (XSLT Mappings) that you can use in different integration solutions like SAP Integration Suite and SAP Process Orchestration.
We will examine the individual steps in more detail.
Library of Type Systems
The library of type systems is a collection of message templates that are provided by agencies that maintain the B2B/A2A/B2G standards. Each of the type system is developed and maintained by the agency that owns it.
Type systems are as follows:
- SAP IDOCS
- ASC X12
- ICA Test
- SAP S/4HANA Cloud OData
- SAP S/4HANA Cloud SOAP
- SAP S/4HANA On Premise IDoc
The figure below shows a sample type system from SAP S/4HANA Cloud OData – to be more precise, the business partner OData interface.
A continuous example shows the individual steps more clearly.
The source is a MIG OrderRequest based on a SOAP interface. On the target side, an ASC x12 Purchase Order interface is created as MIG.
A mapping is then created between the source and the destination. The mapping artifacts can then be used, for example, in the CI.
Build a MIG (Message Implementation Guideline) for Source and Target
A message implementation guideline, also referred to as MIG, is used as the source or target in a mapping guideline (MAG) of the SAP Integration Advisory Methodology. This is created using one of the messages in the type system that is relevant to your scenario as the template.
The MIG contains all the information for implementing a customized message interface. The SAP Integration Advisory Methodology uses the message in a type system as a starting point to ensure that you do not have to refer to any additional documents to implement the interface. By providing a MIG, you ensure that all users who are involved in the process of implementing the interface have a clear understanding of the guidelines.
Structure of Target and Source MIG
Watch this video to see the structure of the target and source MIG.
Mapping Guidelines (MAGs)
A mapping guideline (MAG) is the runtime artifact that you use in the mapping step of an integration application like SAP CI. This is used as a reference or guidance for implementing mapping in the integration application. By providing such an artifact, you simplify the mapping task for users who use messages that adhere to the A2A/B2B type system standards.
To reiterate, a MAG is based on a source and a target message implementation guideline. It demonstrates how the defined nodes at each side are mapped, describing all mapping elements in detail with definitions or notes and providing further instructions for the transformation, such as functions or code value mappings.
In addition to the actual mapping, further steps are carried out in the MAG, pre- and post-processing, validation, and conversion.
Use the Proposal Service
All proposals are from a centrally provided and trained knowledge graph. The graph is trained by users; once they activate a MAG, their updates are anonymously pushed into the graph. A number of diverse machine learning (ML)-based algorithms then calculate the best fit proposal according your business context and based on the selected source and target structure. The main intention is that all proposals are semantically correct, independent of the complexity of the source and target structures.
Watch this video to learn more about the proposal service.
With the SAP Integration Advisory Methodology, you can map a variety of special messages types, especially from the B2B area, into each other. For example, an X12 EDI message to an SAP IDOC message, and much more. The complexity is mitigated by wizards and an intelligent proposal service. This proposal service is based on a learning system. The created mapping can be used as a package directly, either in Cloud Integration or Process integration. It is based on XSLT technology.
- Read the blog Integration Content Advisory Methodology: Overview of Components and Further Reading for a dedicated overview of SAP Integration Advisory Methodology components.
- Visit the Terminology & Glossary for SAP Integration Advisory Methodology page on SAP Help portal.
- Check out the free openSAP course SAP Integration Advisory Methodology Capability of SAP Integration Suite.
- Visit SAP Community page and find a plethora of special blog entries about the SAP Integration Advisory Methodology.