Outlining the Idea of SAP Cloud ALM


After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Outline how SAP Cloud ALM can support the customer’s journey to the Intelligent Enterprise

The Demand for SAP Cloud ALM

Dreams without Limits want to manage their Hire to Retire process end to end. Therefore, Paula Project meets Alexander Architect from Implement HXM! to learn more about the approach. The implementation partner makes the following recommendation:

Application Lifecycle Management

Paula is excited and wants to know more about SAP Cloud ALM and how it works. Alexander first explains the meaning of Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) and its phases.

Alexander explains that you need ALM throughout the entire lifecycle of the customer’s IT solution:

It consists of multiple phases and covers both the implementation, and the operations of the customer’s business processes:

  • Design: Discuss with the lines of business (LOBs) how the business processes will be executed on SAP S/HANA Cloud and other integrated services and systems (such as SAP SuccessFactors).
  • Build: Ensure that all configuration activities are performed to realize the requirements derived from design. Besides the configuration of SAP S/4HANA Cloud and the integrated systems themselves, these activities can also include the development of extensions and the setting up of integrations.
  • Test: Check the quality of the settings before going productive. This service includes various types of testing, such as integration testing for business processes running across multiple components and user acceptance testing (UAT) to determine if stakeholder expectations are met.
  • Deploy: Orchestrate the consistent deployment of your changes to production, ensuring comprehensive documentation of requirements, approvals, and follow-up activities.
  • Detect: Monitor your business processes to ensure they work end-to-end without abnormalities and disruptions.
  • Analyze: Perform root-cause analysis to identify the origin of any errors that may occur.
  • Correct: Trigger the required correction process.
  • Automate: Execute operation flows automatically to avoid repeating tasks and increase overall operation quality.

Note that implementation and operations run in parallel. Changes will be requested from the Lines of Business (LOBs) continuously after go-live. You can implement these changes while operating your productive solution, and the number of change events will increase as implementations become more agile. A central ALM platform covering both implementation and operations helps avoid unwanted impacts.

The benefits of ALM are three-fold:

  • Accelerate time-to-value by shortening the implementation project with the help of pre-configuration and automation of tasks
  • Safeguard business continuity and hence reducing cost of downtime by monitoring on business processes, integration, user, and application level which allows proactive problem detection and accelerates problem resolution
  • Reduce cost of implementation and operations of the business processes by accelerating project activities and automating corrective actions

Paula is very excited about the capabilities of ALM from SAP together with SAP Cloud ALM as tool for ALM in general. But she wants to know more how this would look like for the implementation of the Hire to Retire process.

Therefore, Alexander points put that Implementation and Operations of the intelligent enterprise are based on

  • End-to-End business processes (such as Hire to Retire or Lead to Cash) consisting of subprocesses that may run on different SAP systems, for example the Hire to Retire process uses both SAP SuccessFactors and SAP S/4HANA Cloud,
  • Best practice process content, and
  • SAP Activate methodology.

He continues that cloud implementation at SAP is based on the SAP Activate framework consisting of the three pillars SAP Best Practices, guided configurations and (the solution specific) SAP Activate methodology. The configuration is performed with SAP Central Business Configuration based on a business adoption catalog.


SAP Activate provides methodology and end-to-end guidance for implementing SAP solutions. SAP Cloud ALM provides functionality to extend the SAP Activate methodology through project management and execution support. For more information, see the blogs SAP Activate in under 9 minutes and SAP Activate is Even Better When Using SAP Cloud ALM.


For more information on SAP Activate, feel free to use the blog The Beginner’s Guide to SAP Activate – Best Practices, Guided Configuration and SAP Activate Methodology as a starting point. For more information on SAP Central Business Configuration, you may use the blog SAP Central Business Configuration – Collection and the online documentation at https://help.sap.com/docs/CENTRAL_BUSINESS_CONFIGURATION as starting point.

A Cloud-Based Offering

Finally, Paula wants to know the costs for SAP Cloud ALM and how to get its latest updates from SAP.

Alexander emphasizes that SAP Cloud ALM is cloud native and open. It is in the public cloud, that is, many customers share the same offering. Therefore, it is very cost efficient for customers such as Dreams without Limits.

SAP Cloud ALM is ready for immediate consumption and SAP always keeps it up to date. It is rethought, newly designed, and built completely on modern cloud technology. It is intuitive and easy to use.

SAP Cloud Service subscription and SAP Enterprise Support include fair usage rights. That means, for example, that customers do not have unlimited capacity to store documents. But they have enough storage to sufficiently work with the tool.


Be aware that SAP provides you with fair usage of 8 GB SAP HANA memory in total and an API usage of 8GB outbound data transfer per month. If you extend the given memory, you can subscribe to additional memory blocks with our BTP service, described in SAP Cloud ALM, memory extension.

For more information, see https://support.sap.com/en/alm/usage-rights.html.


SAP Cloud ALM originally focused on SaaS offerings of SAP. However, it now also covers on-premise solutions. This is the foundation for proper ALM of hybrid solutions. An interactive table of supported solutions is available in SAP Help Portal.

For the roadmap for SAP Cloud ALM, search for SAP Cloud ALM in SAP Roadmap Explorer at: https://roadmaps.sap.com/.

Benefits for Customers

In the evening, Paula recaps the value of cloud-based solutions such as SAP S/4HANA Cloud, and SAP SuccessFactors – which are the main components for their Hire to Retire process – for Dreams without Limits:

After the meeting with Alexander, Paula realizes that this is also valid for SAP Cloud ALM.

  • SAP Cloud ALM is a cloud product. Therefore, general cloud benefits apply to it. For example, it is always available.
  • The business experiences zero downtime because SAP, as the provider, takes care of that.
  • It is always up to date. Again, as the provider, SAP takes care on it. SAP achieves that with continuous deployment: As soon as a functionality is developed, tested, and ready, it is deployed. Also, you can experience new functionalities on a two-weekly basis. Error fixing can even deploy daily.
  • How does Paula know when these new functionalities are available? Here, Alexander answers that SAP provides a feature called What's New. Customers can find What's New as an announcement tile in the app itself.
  • In addition, the team from Dreams without Limits can access SAP Cloud ALM from anywhere, they have unlimited scalability for maximum efficiency, and no IT maintenance costs. SAP Cloud ALM fair usage rights are included in their SAP Enterprise Support, cloud editions, contract.

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