Setting Up Integrations

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Define integration principles for the Intelligent Enterprise
  • Review the Integration Solution Advisory Methodology
  • Understand the SAP Business Technology Platform Integration Suite capabilities
  • Differentiate integration connectivity options for different use cases
  • Set up an integration scenario with the SAP Fiori Communication Management apps
  • Use the Cloud Integration Automation Service (CIAS) to automate an integration scenario setup
  • Monitor integrations with available tools

Integration in the Intelligent Enterprise

Key Integration Principles for the Intelligent Enterprise

SAP's integration strategy for the Intelligent Enterprise is based on four key principles.

Integration Solution Advisory Methodology

Integration Solution Advisory Methodology

SAP provided the Integration Solution Advisory Methodology (ISA-M) as a component of the holistic integration principle. This methodology is designed to support enterprise integration architects in shaping and documenting their integration strategy. ISA-M includes a collection of typical integration use case patterns in a hybrid landscape that can be mapped to various integration services/technologies based on a customer's requirements. The methodology is open to include SAP and non-SAP integration services and technologies in the overall integration strategy.

The Integration Solution Advisory Methodology consists of three major steps:

  • Integration domains: Entry points of the methodology are integration domains that describe typical integration areas within a hybrid system landscape, such as on-premise-to-cloud or cloud-to-cloud integration.
  • Integration styles: Integration styles describe the different categories of integration: process, data, user, and IoT centric. Each integration style has specific characteristics and can be refined by use-case patterns.
  • Integration technology mapping: Integration styles and use-case patterns can be mapped to integration technologies and services, including integration technologies from SAP and third parties. This allows enterprise architects to derive integration guidelines for their organizations. A sample integration guideline could state that the SAP Cloud Platform Integration service is the preferred integration technology for the process integration style within the on-premise-to-cloud integration domain. This mapping depends on the customer context, which takes into consideration aspects such as existing investments and available skill sets.

SAP Business Technology Platform Integration Suite

SAP Integration Suite Overview

The SAP Integration Suite offers a modular set of integration services covering all needs in cloud and hybrid landscapes:

  • Process integrations (application to application) across value chains, such as lead to cash, recruit to retire, source to pay, and design to operate
  • Master data integrations that provide master data consistency leveraging SAP One Domain Model
  • API-driven integrations, including full API lifecycle management and omnichannel access
  • Event-driven integrations to support sense-and respond scenarios based on business events
  • Data integration and pipelines to support artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data lake or data warehousing scenarios with the SAP Data Intelligence solution
  • B2B integrations to integrate with suppliers across the digital ecosystem, including e-government - business to government (B2G) - integrations to support document compliance

SAP Integration Suite is complemented by existing on-premise technologies such as SAP Data Services software (from the solutions for enterprise information and data management from SAP) and SAP Process Orchestration software.

Learn more about the SAP Integration Suite in the SAP Discovery Center.

SAP Cloud Integration

SAP Cloud Integration helps you to connect cloud and on-premise applications with other SAP and non-SAP cloud and on-premise applications. This service has the capabilities to process messages in real-time scenarios spanning different companies, organizations, or departments within one organization. You can:

  • Integrate processes and data in application-to-application (A2A) and business-to-business (B2B) scenarios.
  • Integrate various applications and data sources from SAP and non-SAP, on premise, as well as the cloud. SAP Cloud Integration comes with a set of prebuilt adapters.
  • Benefit from prepackaged integration content to jump-start integration projects and to set up productive scenarios with only minimum effort. You can extend predefined integration flows according to your requirements.
  • Use the adapter SDK to build your own custom adapters for additional connectivity needs.
  • Customize the access to SAP Cloud Integration with our public OData APIs.
  • Use our core integration and security capabilities for the safe and reliable processing of messages. Configure the way how messages are exchanged within an integration scenario so that the data involved is protected according to the newest security standards.
  • Orchestrate business processes and integrate data in synchronous as well as in asynchronous scenarios. SAP Cloud Integration also supports reliable messaging processes based on asynchronous decoupling implemented by using queuing mechanisms.

SAP Cloud Connector

SAP Cloud Connector facilitates secure communication between SAP cloud solutions and protected on-premise or private cloud networks that cannot be accessed directly from the Internet. The cloud connector acts as a reverse invoke proxy component that is installed and runs on an on-premise network. The administrator has complete control over the on premise systems and resources that can be accessed by the cloud applications and the cloud applications using the cloud connector. Broken connections are recovered automatically, and the tool provides audit logging of inbound traffic and configuration changes. Cloud connector is used in hybrid scenarios where cloud applications must access or extend on-premise software.

Without a solution like SAP Cloud Connector, a developer would need to reconfigure the on premise/private cloud firewall settings to allow external access from public cloud systems. The Cloud Connector therefore provides a much easier, lower TCO method of integrating public cloud and on premise/private cloud applications. SAP also provides standard support for the Cloud Connector.

SAP API Management

SAP API Management lets you publish, promote, and oversee APIs in a secure and scalable environment. API Management technology helps you to share digital assets and enable developer communities to consume these assets in new channels, devices, and user interfaces. Available in the cloud, the technology helps promote co-innovation among employees, partners, and the developer community. To gain better insights about consumer needs, you can empower employees and partners with access to critical information and increase reach to a wider customer base. API Management reduces complexity by leveraging a single provisioning platform (API Platform) to provide unified access and governance of APIs across a heterogeneous landscape.

SAP API Business Hub

The SAP API Business Hub is a public catalog of all SAP APIs and partner APIs to enable integration and application developers in the SAP ecosystem to discover, test, and use public APIs from SAP, and integration content for the SAP Integration Suite. The APIs are documented in the open API format, which is a vendor-neutral open-source format. To ensure stability of the APIs on the API Business Hub, SAP has extended the existing API lifecycle and version management with a deprecation policy that defines versioning, compatibility of changes, and applicability.

Note

Find prepackaged integration content, APIs, and open connectors in the SAP API Business Hub

SAP Open Connectors

SAP Open Connectors are pre-built, feature-rich connectors to simplify the connectivity and seamless integration with over 160 non-SAP cloud applications. Regardless of the application's backend - REST, SOAP, Proprietary SDK, Database, etc. - SAP Open Connectors create a unified API layer and standards-based implementation across every environment. This ensures that developers, integration users, and their use cases are decoupled from the backend services on which they rely. SAP Open Connectors can be very easily integrated with SAP Cloud Integrations, SAP API Management, SAP Data Hub services or your applications.

Learn more about SAP Open Connectors.

SAP Integration Advisor

Defining and implementing standards for business document exchange can involve many complex processes depending on the business need. The SAP Integration Advisor is a cloud-based service that helps you to simplify and streamline the implementation flow of your B2B integration process. It uses a crowd-based machine learning approach to propose the most efficient integration interface for B2B scenarios. It also provides a comprehensive library of the documentation and code lists of all frequently used B2B standards and de facto standards.

Learn more in the SAP Blog: Announcement of the New Integration Content Advisor.

Connecting Applications

Types of SAP S/4HANA Cloud Integrations

Most customers have diverse landscapes where many different systems have to communicate with each other to complete end-to-end business scenarios. SAP S/4HANA Cloud integrations are grouped into three categories:

  • SAP-managed integration: These integrations are predefined and set up by SAP because they are required for the system to function correctly. For example, the Identity Authentication Service lives in SAP Business Technology Platform, but is integrated to the Starter, Quality, and Production systems to secure and protect access to the systems. There is no action needed by customers or partners to set up this integration, as it is defined and predelivered by SAP to support the SAP S/4HANA Cloud system in functioning the way it should.
  • SAP Best Practices template-based integration: If there is an SAP Best Practices scope item available that supports the integration scenario, it's called an SAP-managed integration. This means the integration is predefined and operated by SAP, so no customer involvement is required, besides the initial setup of the integration through either the Best Practices set-up guide, or the Cloud Integration Automation Service.
  • Customer-driven integration: If there is not an SAP Best Practices scope item for the required integration scenario, check the SAP API Business Hub for integration packages or open connectors. If a package or open connector supports the integration scenario, it is implemented by the customer or partner, and then maintained by the customer. If no integration package or open connector in the SAP API Business Hub is available, use the predelivered APIs to create a custom integration. This integration is developed and operated by the customer.
 SAP-managed integrationSAP Best Practices template-based integrationCustomer-driven integration
DescriptionSAP cloud to SAP cloud predeliveredSAP verified content guarantees DIY implementation successBased on robust SAP delivered APIs
Operated bySAPCustomerCustomer
Created byPredefined & implemented by SAPContent predefined by SAP; implemented by customerDeveloped & implemented by customer
ResponsibilityUpgrades managed by SAPCustomer owns and manages their integrationsCustomer owns and manages their integrations

How to find integration content:

Integration ContentResource
SAP Best Practices template-based integrationSerach for predelivered SAP Best Practices integration scope items in the SAP Best Practices Explorer
Customer-driven integration

Technologies for Integrating Systems and Applications

There are many different methods of facilitating communication between applications or systems. Here are a few methods relevant for SAP S/4HANA Cloud integrations:

Point-to-Point Integration

Every system or application is integrated directly with another system or application to share data. This type of integration can be set up quickly and easily, but it is not scalable. Each point-to-point integration must be individually secured, monitored, and maintained during its lifecycle. This becomes time consuming and costly as more applications are deployed and integrated into the landscape.

Hub-and-Spoke Integration

All applications share data through one central hub system. The hub routes traffic to the respective system/application, and acts as a MOM (Message Oriented Middleware) that can perform any type of translation, transformation, and routing decision. Unlike point-to-point integration, each system that wants to share data doesn't need to be directly connected to any other sharing system. All applications have a single connection point to the hub, to which they can send or retrieve data. With far fewer integrations to maintain, hub and spoke integration massively simplifies the landscape.

Note
SAP Master Data Integration is a centralized hub of HR master data, where both the HR system (SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central) and the SAP S/4HANA Cloud system access directly to send/retrieve data, instead of just sending the data between the two of them (S/4HANA Cloud & SF Employee Central).

Middleware

Middleware acts as a bridge between two or more applications that need to share data with each other. As it's name suggests, middleware sits in the middle of an end-to-end transaction, and therefore initiates outgoing messages from one application in response to incoming messages from another application. Middleware takes data from an application and translates, reformats, and restructures the information so it can be received by another application. It has the ability to process, route, enrich, and manipulate the flow of data between multiple source and target systems.

Application Programming Interface (API)

An Application Programming Interface (API) is a software intermediary that allows two applications to talk to each other. An API is the messenger that delivers a request from one system to another system, then returns a response. APIs facilitate interaction between systems by selectively exposing certain functionalities, allowing different applications, websites, or devices to communicate with each other. While APIs carry data, they need an integration technology to facilitate the transfer between two applications, such as a point-to-point connector or middleware.

Connecting SAP S/4HANA Cloud with Other Solutions

Open APIs for any integration scenario

OData and SOAP APIs can be used to connect SAP S/4HANA Cloud to SAP or non-SAP cloud or on premise applications. OData and SOAP APIs published on the SAP API Business Hub have guaranteed usage rights and lifecycles form SAP, and some support extensibility.

Core Data Services (CDS) Views

The virtual data model (VDM) forms the basis for data access in SAP S/4HANA Cloud, for example, in analytical consumption or APIs. The Core Data Services (CDS) views that make up the VDM follow consistent modeling and naming rules. They expose business data, which is stored in abstract database tables, based on business semantics and is therefore easier to consume.

You can use the Custom CDS Views app for different purposes:

  • External APIs define a service that can be consumed externally via OData.
  • Cube or Dimension views can be used in analytical scenarios.
  • General custom CDS views can be reused for view building in various scenarios.

Traditional SAP Integration APIs

BAPIs and IDocs can be used to connect SAP S/4HANA Cloud with on-premise applications. They are published and released via SAP Notes and can only be used in the specific scenarios for which they have been explicitly released. There is limited or no extensibility and limited or no lifecycle guarantees for BAPIs and IDocs.

Transitioning from On Premise to Cloud Integration Technologies

SAP Process Integration (PI) and SAP Process Orchestration (PO) are SAP's traditional integration middleware products for on-premise deployments. PI enables message-based integration between systems in an SAP landscape. PO combines the capabilities of PI, SAP Business Process Management, SAP Business Rules Management, and out-of-the-box B2B connectivity support for EDI communications to meet most on-premise integration needs.

For customers that still have a relatively heavy on-premise footprint on the journey toward the cloud, the first step is to use the built-in cloud integration runtime of PI/PO (release 7.5 and higher). This is provided with any SAP Process Integration or SAP Process Orchestration license, and allows SAP customers to take advantage of the prebuilt integration packages provided with the SAP Integration Suite while deploying the actual integration scenarios on premise. In this case, design-time work is done in the cloud while deployment is through the on-premise runtime.

Moving forward, new integrations should be built with the SAP Integration Suite, and existing integrations should be eventually moved to the SAP Integration Suite. Prebuilt integration packages that can accelerate an implementation are in the SAP API Business Hub. Other capabilities like API Management and Open Connectors support building and deploying cloud integrations. The SAP Cloud SDK (Software Developer Kit) is a set of tools and libraries for developers to build and extend SAP applications in the cloud.

Note

Learn how to address different integration use cases with SAP Cloud Integration in this SAP Blog: Enterprise Integration Patterns with SAP Cloud Integration

Comparing SAP Integration Technologies: SAP Integration Suite vs. SAP Process Orchestration

 SAP Integration SuiteSAP Process Orchestration
Deployment
  • Data centers owned and run by SAP
  • Multi-cloud
  • Customer landscape
  • Private cloud (e.g. SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud
Operations

SAP

Customer

License Model

Monthly subscription fee, pay per use

Product license

Architecture
  • Multitenancy with data isolation
  • Virtualization with automated failover
  • Rolling software updates
  • Single-tenant solution
  • Failover to be configured by customer
  • Near-zero downtime maintenance for updates through support packages or enhancement packages
Prepackaged Integration Content

Available for a variety of cloud solutions from SAP, third party applications, and B2B and B2G scenarios

  • Available for a wide variety of on premise SAP and third party applications
  • Runtime of the SAP Cloud Integration service (starting from SAP PO release 7.5) for re
Preferred Integration Domains
  • Cloud to cloud
  • On premise to cloud
  • On premise to on premise
  • On premise to cloud
Decision Criteria
  • Customer has predominantly cloud-centric landscape
  • No need to invest in on premise middleware (install, operation, upgrades)
  • Fast innovation cycle
  • Flexible license model
  • Scenarios with a need for compliance are available
  • Customer has a predominantly on premise centric landscape
  • Interest in leveraging an existing investment in SAP Process Orchestration
  • Custom interest in having full control over integration (install, operation, upgrades)

Communication Scenarios in SAP S/4HANA Cloud

SAP S/4HANA Cloud Communication Management Apps

The Communication Management apps in SAP S/4HANA Cloud enable you to connect your system to another system to facilitate data exchange. SAP has predelivered many different SAP Best Practices integrations that can be activated using the Communication Management apps, which include:

  • Maintain Communication Users
  • Communication Systems
  • Communication Arrangements
  • Display Communication Scenarios
  • Custom Communication Scenarios
  • Maintain SAP Business Technology Platform Extensions

Maintain Communication Users App

With the Maintain Communication Users app, you create a user that provides authentication for a communication system, and ultimately the final communication arrangement. For a system to post data to another, the solution must authenticate itself with the methods available in the Maintain Communication Users app. You can choose basic authentication, which is user name and password, or upload a security certificate. Keep in mind, the supported authentication methods vary based on the communication arrangement scenario. A communication user is assigned to a communication system, which is then assigned to a communication arrangement.

Communication Systems App

The Communication Systems app enables you to create a communication system, which is then used to establish a communication arrangement. A communication system represents the communication partner within an integration scenario.

To allow two systems to send data, they must be "registered" with the Communication Systems app. You provide technical information, such as the host name URL, logical system, HTTPS port, specify if the integration is using Cloud Connector, and other details.

When creating a communication system, you must assign a communication user to the inbound and/or outbound user sections (varies based on the integration scenario) to authenticate the partner system. Inbound communication refers to a third-party system calling services provided by SAP S/4HANA Cloud (messages are coming into SAP S/4HANA). Outbound communication refers to SAP S/4HANA Cloud calling services provided by the third-party system (messages are sent from SAP S/4HANA).

Communication Arrangements App

You can use the Communication Arrangements app to create and edit communication arrangements that connect the SAP S/4HANA Cloud system to another system. Through a communication arrangement, you are configuring the electronic data exchange between the two systems. The communication scenario determines the authorizations, inbound and outbound services, and the supported authentication methods required for successful setup of the integration.

There are many SAP Best Practices predelivered communication scenarios available that you can simply follow the setup guide instructions in SAP Best Practices Explorer to activate for a particular scope item.

Try it out

Learn how to create a communication arrangement, map the arrangement to a communication system, and map a user to the communication system in SAP S/4HANA Cloud.

Display Communication Scenarios App

The Display Communication Scenarios app is used to display an overview of all available communication scenarios available in your SAP S/4HANA Cloud system. You can also see the scenario details, supported authentication methods, properties, and status.

Maintain SAP Business Technology Platform Extensions App

With the Maintain Business Technology Platform Extensions app, you can create Business Technology Platform extensions to automatically connect an extension build on Business Technology Platform to SAP S/4HANA Cloud.

Custom Communication Scenarios App

You can use the Custom Communication Scenarios app to create scenarios to use later in the Communication Arrangements app. A communication scenario bundles inbound and outbound communication design-time artifacts and is the basis of communication between systems.

Cloud Integration Automation Service

Introduction to the Cloud Integration Automation Service

The Cloud Integration Automation Service (CIAS) is a framework that provides task-based procedures with automation. It eases the technical configuration of SAP Best Practices integrations by reducing the manual work and offers integrated parameter management so data can be entered once and reused throughout the workflow. You can assign integration tasks to different roles to ensure the right person can execute the right task and allows traceability of activity by collecting information on who did what steps during the integration workflow.

Task Types in the Cloud Integration Automation Service:

  • Automated tasks: The respective applications provide APIs, which allows the Cloud Integration Automation service to automate the corresponding configuration step.
  • Semiautomated tasks: These may include customer-specific data (for example, customer tenant URLs defined in the integration setup in SAP Maintenance Planner) to partially automate certain tasks.
  • Manual tasks: These will show the respective excerpt of the implementation guide for the responsible person to apply the necessary setting manually before confirming the task.
Note
Not all integration scenarios are supported with the Cloud Integration Automation service tool. Refer to SAP Best Practices Explorer to determine which scenarios are supported.

Cloud Integration Automation Service in SAP Maintenance Planner

In SAP Maintenance Planner, you will access the Cloud Integration Automation service via the Plan for Cloud Integration Scenario app. In this app, you can find and activate supported SAP Best Practices integration scenarios by completing the guided workflow steps. Always check the set-up guide from SAP Best Practices Explorer first, because there are often prerequisite steps that must be completed before you can run the automation.

Note
To use the Plan for Cloud Integration Scenario app, you must request Cloud Integration Automation Service Entitlement following the instructions provided in SAP Note 2608492. Customers can use this service at no additional cost, if they meet the prerequisites.

What are the other apps for in Maintenance Planner?

SAP Maintenance Planner is a tool within the Landscape Management component of SAP Solution Manager. SAP Solution Manager is the Application Lifecycle Management tool used to implement SAP S/4HANA Cloud, private edition and SAP S/4HANA on premise, therefore most apps in Maintenance Planner are designed to support customers in maintaining and upgrading their private cloud or on-premise systems.

Automate the Integration Setup of a Business Process (1/2)

Complete the following steps in the SAP Maintenance Planner Plan for Cloud Integration Scenario app to set up an automated integration scenario:

  1. Select SAP S/4HANA Cloud Integration.
  2. Select a scenario to set up.
  3. Choose Select Systems to select the system.

Automate the Integration Setup of a Business Process (2/2)

(Continued) Complete the following steps in the SAP Maintenance Planner Plan for Cloud Integration Scenario app to set up an automated integration scenario:

  1. Choose the system tenant(s) as indicated in the guided workflow.
  2. After selecting all systems required, select the Invoke Workflow button in the upper-right corner.
  3. Review the integration scenario details and confirm.

Integration Monitoring Tools

Integration Monitoring with SAP Cloud ALM for Operations

SAP Cloud ALM for Operations enables customers to monitor processes and be alerted to potential issues. A component of Cloud ALM for Operations is Integration & Exception Monitoring. To get a holistic view across your integrated landscape, all cloud and on-premise systems are set up in the SAP Cloud ALM Landscape Management app. Then you can monitor your systems with the Integration & Exception Monitoring app in Cloud ALM.

Capabilities of Integration & Exception Monitoring in SAP Cloud ALM:

  • End-to-End monitoring by correlating single messages to end-to-end message flows across cloud services and systems
  • Monitoring of integration related exceptions
  • Support of peer-to-peer interfaces as well as orchestrated integration
  • Closes gap between business and IT during problem resolution process (technical issue vs. business issue) by:
    • Alerting to notify responsible persons in business and IT about discovered integration related problems
    • Search and track single messages based on exposed business context attributes, for example order numbers
    • Operation automation to trigger operation flows context sensitively for automated correction of problems

Access the Integration & Exception Monitoring setup guides for the supported cloud and on-premise solutions here.

Integration Monitoring in SAP Business Technology Platform

For SAP Cloud Integrations built on the SAP Business Technology Platform, a developer can check the status of messages and integration content artifacts for a tenant cluster.

The start page is divided into the following sections, each covering a specific task area:

  • Monitor Message Processing: View the number and status of processed messages within a specified time window.
  • Manage Integration Content: View the number and status of integration content artifacts (for example, integration flows).
  • Mange Security: Manage certain tasks related to the setup of secure connections between your tenant and remote systems.
  • Manage Stores: Manage temporary data storages on the tenant.
  • Access Logs: Monitor audit logs (resulting from system changes) and analyze errors that occurred during inbound HTTP processing.
  • Manage Locks: Display and manage lock entries that are created (in the in-progress repository) to avoid the same message being processed several times in parallel.

Integration Monitoring in SAP Analytics Cloud

The SAP Cloud Integration Reporting Dashboard is developed on SAP Analytics Cloud. It is a simple and intuitive widget-based analytics dashboard that provides at-a-glance view of relevant key performance indicators of a Business Technology Platform tenant where your SAP Cloud Integrations are running. The widgets in the dashboard displays data in a simple metric that helps you visualize the context information with slicing and dicing capabilities.

Using the dashboard, you can:

  • Monitor the integration flows which has the highest processed messages.
  • Analyze the status of processed messages.
  • Get the count of the deployed artifacts.

Interface Integration Monitoring with Application Interface Framework

In the application layer, app-related interface logic (for example, business validations, business mappings) is often distributed through different technologies. Some interface logic may be implemented in user exits or business add-ins (BAdIs), while other logic is defined in various coding places. Even with the best middleware technology, there will be failed IDoc postings and service calls in the application layer that require monitoring and quick resolutions (for example, validating and reprocessing failed sales orders).

The SAP Application Interface Framework (AIF) is a solution designed to make it easier to manage A2A/process integration by enabling you to create, deploy, monitor, and manage all of your application interfaces in one location. AIF enables business users to reduce the time needed for error handling because they are able to monitor interfaces and troubleshoot issues without IT. AIF shipped as an add-on for SAP S/4HANA on premise, but it is already embedded in SAP S/4HANA Cloud. The SAP Fiori apps in the launchpad, including Message Dashboard, Assign Recipients to Users, and Configure Value Mapping, are built as Web Dynpro for ABAP applications available as SAP Fiori applications on the launchpad for all deployments of SAP S/4HANA.

Learn more in this SAP Blog: SAP Application Interface Framework: All You Need to Know About SAP AIF.

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