The most recurrent SAP licensing challenges #3: User classification

sap agreement

Using software became a mainstream activity nowadays. Do you have a smartphone? Then you’re probably using software – maybe you crushed some candies or scrolled through Facebook or LinkedIn at some point. Do you have a computer? Then you’re definitely using software.

Any app or program you’re using is based on some specific software that comes with licensing agreements, including user definitions and rights to use it. But who takes the time to read all those? Let’s say you’re using FaceApp on your phone, then your only worry may be related to the protection of personal data. Things are a bit different when you use the SAP invoice management software on your company’s computer. And it can get even more complicated when you have to manage all the users within your organization.

Who should keep track of the agreements?

Generally, organizations have someone in charge of purchasing their hardware and software; rarely they also have sufficient people to manage all these assets. It is not uncommon that the IT manager is also responsible for deploying the acquired apps and programs throughout the company. But is this the best approach?

In the light of the recent events related to indirect use, companies started to pay more attention to how they’re using SAP’s software. However, it’s still not entirely clear to everyone who can use what and when. That’s why it’s important to have someone with specialized knowledge who’s managing this part of your business. Keeping track of what is included in every license agreement is not an easy task. Especially if we talk about large organizations.

What kind of user are you?

Compared to other software vendors, SAP tends to work differently. Their user classification is based on basic user tasks and authorizations as defined in the individual agreement with the end user. If you simply go to the SAP portal to find out about the applicable definition for let’s say “professional user”, you will only learn the generic description of the user. SAP is classifying its users based on the customized tasks each employee is performing. To understand what applies in your situation, you have to go back to the contract your company signed with SAP.

To understand if they use the classifications correctly, many organizations make use of SAM tools (e.g. Snow or Flexera). Generally, these tools can be of great help. Still, it’s very important to remember that an SAP user definition is customized and can’t be recognized by the tool. Therefore, you shouldn’t fully rely on the SAM tool, but complement and reconcile it with the information included in your agreement.

Take control of your SAP licensing

A common challenge of the organizations we work with is exactly this: wrong user classification. It’s not easy to validate if you classified a user correctly if you don’t keep track of all the information specified in your agreement. But how do you do that? Don’t worry, there are ways and we are here to help you find the best one for your situation. Contact us and let’s make your SAP licensing an enjoyable journey.

In our extensive whitepaper we covered the challenges discussed in the past weeks. Download it to learn more about these recurrent pain points and suggestions on how to address them.

This article was published on 01-10-2019