Introducing the SAP Lens for the AWS Well-Architected Framework


SAP applications represent the financial system of record and business process backbone for most of the world’s enterprises. Because SAP workloads are both mission-critical and often resource-intensive, architectural decisions can have large impacts. Understandably, customers want to make sure their architecture supports their unique business and technical requirements.

AWS has been supporting SAP workloads since 2008, when SAP themselves started using AWS to support their own innovation journey, and SAP customers have been running production SAP on AWS since 2011. Over this 13+ year journey, we have learned a lot about how to realize the full benefits of AWS for SAP applications. Customers have increasingly asked that we give them structured guidance to help them apply these learnings to their own SAP migration journeys. Today, we’re happy to announce the SAP Lens for the AWS Well-Architected Framework, which will do just that.

Since 2015, AWS customers have consulted the AWS Well-Architected Framework to build secure, high-performing, resilient, and efficient infrastructure for their applications and workloads. Based on five pillars — operational excellence, security, reliability, performance efficiency, and cost optimization — AWS Well-Architected provides a consistent approach for customers and partners to evaluate architectures, and implement designs that can scale over time.

The guidance of the Well Architected framework is relevant to all AWS customers, but as we have done with other industry and technology domains, such as analytics, machine learning and financial services, we saw an opportunity to extend and tailor the recommendations to the specific needs of SAP customers.

What is the SAP Lens?

The SAP Lens is a collection of customer-proven design principles and best practices to help you adopt a cloud-native approach to running SAP on AWS. These recommendations are based on insights that AWS has gathered from customers, AWS Partners, and our own SAP technical specialist communities.

The lens highlights some of the most common areas for assessment and improvement. Designed to align with and provide insights across the five pillars of the AWS Well-Architected Framework:

  • Operational excellence focuses on running and monitoring systems to deliver business value, and continually improving processes and procedures. SAP topics include monitoring and automation approaches.
  • Security focuses on protecting information and systems. SAP topics include data protection and system access.
  • Reliability focuses on ensuring a workload performs its intended function correctly and consistently when it’s expected to. SAP topics include maximizing the availability benefits of cloud and reviewing the protection and recovery approaches for various failure scenarios.
  • Performance efficiency focuses on using IT and computing resources efficiently. SAP topics include sizing and ensuring that performance benchmarks for SAP Support are met.
  • Cost optimization focuses on avoiding unnecessary costs. SAP topics include scaling and reservation strategies aligned with the workload requirements.

Across all pillars, we also focus on highlighting the support and compatibility requirements of SAP and the database and operating system vendors which make up the technology stack.

Diagram showing the key pillars of the AWS Well-Architected Framework: Operational Excellence, Security, Reliability, Performance Efficiency, and Cost Optimization

Who should use the SAP Lens?

Whether you have been running your SAP workload on AWS for years or are just now migrating to AWS, you will find clear advice tailored to your specific circumstances.

We recommend SAP technology architects, cloud architects, and team members who build, operate, and maintain SAP systems on AWS review the SAP lens content and suggestions. With this guidance the SAP Lens can help you make the appropriate design decisions in line with your business requirements.

Applying the lens to your architecture can validate the resiliency and efficiency of your design or provide recommendations to address the gaps that are identified. We expect customers to use the SAP Lens as a supplement to the AWS Well-Architected Framework.

Next Steps

The SAP Lens is available now in the AWS Documentation and as a PDF for customers to use in a self-service fashion. If you require additional expert guidance, contact your AWS account team to engage an SAP specialist solution architect or the AWS Professional Services SAP Specialty Practice.

AWS is committed to the SAP Lens as a living tool. As SAP’s products evolve and new AWS services become available, we will update the SAP Lens accordingly. Our mission will always be to help you design and deploy well-architected applications so that you can focus on delivering on your business objectives.

Learn more about supported SAP solutions, customer case studies and additional resources on our SAP on AWS website.