SAP taps Microsoft Teams integration for enterprise SaaS
by Paul Davenport Paul Davenport on

When Salesforce recently scooped up Slack in a partnership deemed “the most strategic combination in the history of software” (according to Slack’s own CEO), other enterprise cloud providers wasted no time in securing their own blockbuster partnerships to merge cloud-based collaboration tools with larger enterprise software suites.

The latest comes from SAP, who has expanded their existing partnership with Microsoft to integrate Microsoft Teams with SAP’s popular S/4 HANA enterprise resource planning software, as well as their SuccessFactors HR toolkit and SAP Customer Experience CRM.

“New ways of working, collaborating and interacting completely transform how we operate,” said Christian Klein, CEO of SAP SE in a statement. “By integrating Microsoft Teams across our solution portfolio, we will bring collaboration to the next level, jointly determining the future of work and enabling the frictionless enterprise. Our trusted partnership with Microsoft is focused on continuously advancing customer success. That’s why we are also expanding interoperability with Azure.”

This is just the latest in SAP and Microsoft’s enterprise cloud collaborations to date, as the two companies announced back in 2017 that SAP would run more of it’s financial systems on Azure while Microsoft committed to selling S/4 HANA across Microsoft’s customer base. Two years later the two cloud giants announced Project Embrace, a go-to-market partnership that would accelerate S/4HANA and SAP Cloud Platform on Microsoft Azure adoption “from conceptualization to sales,”

Fast forward to 2021, and cloud adoption is on a faster trajectory than anyone had anticipated, as remote work—whether that’s traditional work-from-home or more flexible work-from-anywhere—has come to define the modern enterprise. This is calling for network operations teams to retire their legacy, office-based workflows and tools for more easily scalable and agile cloud solutions across the board, including (if not especially) where collaboration tools like Teams and Slack are concerned.

The crux of Microsoft and SAP’s partnership is all about reducing complexity and minimizing costs as enterprises have been pushed to either accelerate long-term digital transformations or tackle projects that they wholly hadn’t planned (or budgeted) for at the start of the pandemic. While those who fell in the latter category likely faced a great deal of friction at the start of their rushed transformations, integrations like SAP and Microsoft’s help streamline deployment and adoption since collaboration solutions are already built into business tools.

Ensuring Teams performance post-deployment

Inevitably, leveraging integrated cloud solutions (especially ones that come with collaboration functionality already built in) will make for a less complicated deployment for enterprise IT than if they had to onboard a bevy of non-integrated cloud tools. But aside from the potential roadblocks that could derail an IT team’s cloud deployment, they also need to bear long-term end-user experience in mind and build in management and monitoring strategies that can scale with a remote (and eventually dynamic) user base.

When it comes to leveraging Microsoft Teams in particular—whether it’s being deployed as part of a larger enterprise suite of tools or one-off to connect remote workers—enterprise IT teams need greater visibility into how this platform is performing continuously from the end-user perspective to quickly understand and resolve issues when Teams performance lags.

AppNeta is particularly adept at providing this end-user perspective into Microsoft Teams performance, allowing network IT to gain an outside-in look at the network paths Teams traffic travels from individual remote user locations to the nearest Teams PoP (ie. Azure Region). This gives a unique perspective into Teams performance that enterprise IT wouldn’t have inherently, leaving them otherwise blind to many of the primary domains where performance bottlenecks take place in a work-from-anywhere environment.


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Filed Under: Industry Insights

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