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The synergy of market leaders: Exploring Microsoft and SAP’s game-changing collaboration
By Silvio Bessa General Manager, SAP Business Unit, Microsoft
6 min read
Over the past three decades, Microsoft and SAP have teamed up to combine their unique areas of expertise and ignite a technological revolution. This partnership has given rise to a series of groundbreaking innovations that utilize both companies’ strengths to deliver endless benefits to customers. In this blog, we will explore the most recent exciting developments from the Microsoft and SAP partnership and how they’re transforming the enterprise landscape.
Era of AI: Integrations between Microsoft 365 Copilot, Copilot for Microsoft Viva Learning, and SAP SuccessFactors
As the world changes and technology advances, the potential for AI to create business value for customers and partners is real. Over the past few months, Microsoft has announced AI innovation across Microsoft 365, Microsoft Viva, Dynamics 365, Microsoft Security, and Azure.
Today we are thrilled to announce that Microsoft and SAP will deepen their longstanding partnership to help solve customers’ most fundamental business challenges. The companies will collaborate on integrating SAP® SuccessFactors® solutions with Microsoft 365 Copilot and Copilot for Microsoft Viva Learning, as well as Microsoft’s Azure OpenAI Service to access powerful language models that analyze and generate natural language. The integrations will enable new experiences designed to improve how organizations attract, retain, and skill their people.
Through this collaboration and SAP’s use of the Azure OpenAI Service API, Microsoft and SAP will work together on new experiences that streamline recruiting and employee development processes, including:
- Recruiting: SAP will leverage the Azure OpenAI Service API and data from SAP SuccessFactors solutions to create compelling and highly targeted job descriptions. Through an integration between SAP SuccessFactors Recruiting solution and Microsoft 365 Copilot people leaders will be able to fine-tune job descriptions in Microsoft Word with additional content and checks to detect bias. The final job descriptions will then be published in SAP SuccessFactors solutions to complete the workflow, without people leaders having to leave their normal flow of work. SAP will also leverage the Azure OpenAI Service API to offer prompts to interviewers within Microsoft Teams with suggested questions based on a candidate’s resume, the job description and similar jobs.
- Learning: Integration between SAP SuccessFactors solutions and Microsoft Viva Learning will enable employees to use Copilot in Viva Learning to conduct natural language queries to create personalized learning recommendations based on data and learning courses in SAP SuccessFactors solutions that align with the employee’s career and development goals. As learning is completed, the SAP SuccessFactors growth portfolio will update automatically, providing companies an up-to-date view of the skills landscape in their organization. This enhancement builds on an already robust integration with content, assignment, permissions, and SSO sync, available now, and an automated admin setup experience available to customers later this year.
By combining the best of SAP and Microsoft’s data, AI and cloud computing technology, we are redefining what’s possible in the future. Stay tuned for more exciting developments as we continue to push the boundaries of innovation together!
Driving organizational productivity with enhanced collaborative ERP
SAP and Microsoft continue to enhance end-user productivity through the introduction of collaborative enterprise resource planning (ERP) capabilities. Recently, Microsoft and SAP jointly announced the collaborative SAP ERP experiences, that delivers a unique, intuitive experience which combines mission-critical data from SAP S/4HANA Cloud, SAP’s flagship cloud ERP solution with industry-standard Microsoft Teams and Microsoft 365 collaboration software. It allows people to work together on key business processes in Teams and Outlook, bringing the business data to the place where they are already doing their collaboration.
The announcements of Adaptive card-based Loop components in SAP S/4HANA Cloud, demonstrate a much deeper S/4HANA + Teams integration. These capabilities let you bring your SAP data and business processes directly into Teams and Outlook where users spend a majority of their workday. With these Adaptive card-based Loop components users can complete their SAP S/4HANA tasks from directly within Teams chats, calls, and more. This allows them to collaborate directly on SAP data within the flow of their work.
In addition to the work around SAP S/4HANA, our vision is to release more Teams Apps and deeper integrations across all of Microsoft 365 for SAP Field Service Management, SAP SuccessFactors and SAP Concur later this year.
Event Driven Architectures
Event Driven Architectures (EDA) are becoming more common for unifying cross application process flows. We can see customers using EDA for highly varied scenarios like real-time notifications of SAP business events, real-time data replications into Azure data-lakes, or integrating across vendor boundaries in a loosely coupled fashion.
To make the integration of events originating from SAP’s event driven ecosystem with Microsoft simpler and more efficient, we have worked with SAP as an Azure Event Grid Partner to simplify the way Azure users can consume these SAP events. Configurations on SAP Event Mesh and Microsoft Azure Event Grid allow for easily connecting the two event-driven ecosystems. Even better, both platforms adhere to Cloud Events open standard.
After a highly successful preview program, we plan to release the full end-to-end flow in the future. Check out more information about the announcement New SAP events on Azure Event Grid and how to get started at Azure Event Grid – Subscribe to SAP events.
SAP Private Link for Azure
SAP Private Link enables a simplified and secured network connection across the Microsoft Azure backbone between SAP and Microsoft endpoints including SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP). This avoids the need for public endpoints when integrating with BTP. Find a detailed comparison with the SAP Cloud Connector.
One example is our joint manufacturing customer who safeguards their SAP integration flows accessing Azure storage accounts with Private Link. Hear from the customer’s integration architect in his own words.
Together with Microsoft, SAP released a comprehensive list of Azure services with SAP Private Link. Among them are critical workloads like the Azure Application Gateway with web application firewall, Azure Functions for serverless workloads, Azure cognitive service including Azure OpenAI for the latest in modern AI, and Azure Cosmos DB for global scale of extensions apps on BTP. Find further end-to-end scenarios on our blog series and the SAP documentation.
In addition to co-innovations with SAP, Microsoft also continues to deliver unique solutions that drive innovation and position Azure as the most advanced and customer-focused cloud platform available. To learn more about our latest product updates, please see our blog post.
Customer success and transformation: RISE with SAP on Microsoft Azure
To foster a stronger and more innovative partnership, Microsoft partnered with SAP over 2 and a half years ago to bring RISE with SAP on Azure to their customers. The two companies have deepened their partnership by leveraging each other’s platforms to drive greater impact and further growth for their customer base. Over the past year, the results of this partnership have become abundantly clear: shared customers have seen huge success with RISE with SAP on Azure, which has empowered them to accelerate their business transformation with flexibility, scalability, and access to innovation. The following are some examples:
Hilti, a pioneering construction supplier is in an industry that is rapidly moving towards digitalization, and therefore knew that it needed to migrate its IT environment to the cloud, including its business-critical enterprise resource planning application. Within less than a year, Hilti successfully migrated to RISE with SAP on Azure. This move enabled Hilti to move any remaining server infrastructure to the Microsoft cloud and close down its on-premises datacenter, which increased resilience, minimized downtime, and prepared them for more rapid growth.
“RISE with SAP on Azure helped us move our experts and resources into areas where they can add the most value, which was a game-changer.“—Dr. Christoph Baeck, Hilti’s head of IT platforms.
Another example of a company that has benefited from RISE with SAP on Azure is GWC, a major logistics provider in Qatar. GWC needed to prepare its IT landscape for the greatest possible agility, speed, and resilience from its SAP enterprise resource planning system, especially after being selected to provide logistics for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. To achieve these goals, GWC migrated its ERP functionality to Microsoft cloud and chose Microsoft Azure for its RISE with SAP deployment.
“The cloud was the best option to support the strategic goals of the company. Using RISE with SAP on Azure for our deployment, we get instant access to the latest patches, innovations, and updates from SAP.”— Hamdan Merchant: Senior Director for Business Process Improvement, Innovations and Corporate IT, GWC.
Last but not least, Luminous Power Technologies, a manufacturer of cutting-edge power backup, battery, home electrical, and solar products found the partners it needed to continue innovating and delighting its customers in SAP and Microsoft. Using RISE with SAP on Azure and Microsoft Cloud as the backbone of its digital journey, Luminous was able to innovate, integrate, and extend its capabilities on both cloud and hybrid platforms.
“We made RISE with SAP on Azure and the Microsoft Cloud the backbone of our digital journey—it helps us innovate, integrate, and extend our capabilities on both cloud and hybrid platforms.”—Chander Khanduja, Chief Information Officer of Luminous Power Technologies.
The partnership between Microsoft and SAP has enabled customers to accelerate their business transformation, improve resilience, minimize downtime, and prepare for more rapid growth. By leveraging key tools and resources, as well as the latest innovations and updates, these organizations are better positioned to navigate today’s rapidly-changing IT landscape and meet the needs of their own customers.
To learn more, visit the Microsoft booth at Sapphire Orlando, Barcelona, and Sao Paulo.
Also, for the latest product updates from Sapphire, check out our engineering blog.