June 8, 2020
SAP Digital Access
SAP Indirect Access has been an integral part of our samQ license optimization software for years. Since SAP announced it’s new ERP pricing model for the digital age we have also incorporated built-in functionality to measure documents in line with this new model. Since 2019 SAP has also been rolling out their Passport Program, which involves development of document measurement functionality that SAP customers can install to identify indirectly created documents.
VOQUZ Labs has carried out a large number of projects relating to SAP indirect use and digital access, helping companies to determine the exact number of documents that are subject to a fee from SAP, and also enabling their preparation for the associated contract negotiations with SAP.
Two years ago, SAP used a rough guide to estimate such documents, but now it should be done with the newly developed SAP Passport tool. Since our samQ customers have been able to determine the document counts accurately and have had this information at hand, they have been more relaxed about this change.
So when SAP Passport was released for use by SAP customers we also reviewed the document measurement values it generated and had to rub our eyes in disbelief at what we saw. Suddenly, customers were facing an increased volume of indirectly generated documents from multiple business process and external interfaces. Even documents created by dialog users, who had an SAP license were showing up in the measurements.
We launched our own technical research and discovered many areas where the documents being counted were questionable. Especially finance documents, which resulted in indirectly generated follow-on documents such as material documents and invoice documents to name but a few. These anomalies really caught our attention and we knew this would put customer at risk of unnecessary SAP license fees. We drew our customers attention to this warning them that it could be very expensive given that according to the SAP definition these documents should not be chargeable. Customers using the samQ document counts and findings performed better in their negotiations with SAP, and their business outcomes were positive in terms of purchasing the correct volume of SAP digital document licenses for their business.
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The fact that document counts from the SAP Passport tool were not quite right is a potential explanation for the generous extension of the Digital Access Adaption Program (DAAP). After all, SAP grants a 90% discount on indirectly generated documents and extended the program, which was supposed to end in spring 2020, to the end of 2021.
On June 4, 2020, a new correction notice was announced, which had already been released in April:
2897841 – Measurement of SAP Digital Access should not count financial documents that were created indirectly as follow-on documents. This was a right step in the right direction from SAP.
It looks more likely that SAP will move away from user-based licensing in the next few years and will focus on metric based licensing such as digital documents. This is already happening in many areas for example when converting to a S/4HANA contract. We are encouraged and excited by the changes that SAP are making in the new SAP digital license model. We are therefore even more focused to help companies stay one step ahead and ensure that they are prepared with the right information at the right time using the right solutions.
Our recommendation to SAP customers is to use this information in order accurately determine their document counts and furthermore to license the correct volumes of indirectly generated documents.
We would be grateful to have the opportunity to help and support your business with our years of experience and our samQ Solution. Why? Because there are even more pitfalls in this relatively new licensing area.
Peter Rattey is Managing Director of VOQUZ Labs. He was the initiator and is significantly involved in the development of the SAP license management tool samQ.
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