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Motivation & Goals

System Landscape Governance helps to reduce costs by decreasing landscape complexity

When moving from a highly integrated single product like SAP R/3 to a complete suite of applications based on a set of different runtime and integration capabilities as provided by SAP NetWeaver, the functional scope increased significantly. However, the growth in functionality is attended by an considerable increase of flexibility, how these different applications or capabilities could be distributed and implemented within a complete system landscape.

Flexibility is nice, when thinking of the offered set of choices to optimize into a certain direction. Unfortunately independent or local product optimizations at SAP have sometimes led to complex system landscapes at customer side in the past. Thus flexibility & local optimization could become the natural enemy of simplicity & standardization.

System Landscape Governance targets solving this conflict by finding the right trade-off between flexibility and simplicity. Providing enough flexibility for customers to design the optimal landscape setup or to run aimed software updates of implemented products, but still keep the flexibility manageable to focus on ensured product qualities and standardized update behavior that customers can rely on (e.g. avoiding the need of changing the complete system landscape, when a customer is just targeting to update a single system).

Starting with the development cycle of SAP Business Suite 7 and SAP NetWeaver 7.0 we established the SAP System Landscape Governance Board within SAP in order to strenghten a comprehensive and cross-product oriented view on the complete system landscape. Focusing on the reduction of complexity when plannning and running system landscapes of multiple SAP Business Suite applications and SAP NetWeaver components.


Whereas most of the Landscape Governance activities are SAP-internal measures like defining and promoting architectural principles, development rules and required product qualities or running assessments for new product enhancements, there are some deliverables directly targeting the external community.

We already started 2009 to publish some of the deliverables in SDN (you can find the archive of these recommendations here). The feedback we received from customers were overwhelming positive.

Since the scope could be expanded in the meantime and we were looking for a more flexible medium in publishing new results, we now decided to communicate with customers via a new Wiki space.

The SDN Wiki Space Landscape Governance is the new central place, where all available external deliverables of the SAP System Landscape Governance Board will be published.

The following main deliverables are currently available or planned to be available soon:

  • Reference Landscapes and their targeted guiding principles like the version interoperability matrix of supported product version combinations and supported update strategies of contained products
  • Landscape Recommendations for SAP products or main SAP product components based on the already established common methodology
Welcome to Landscape Governance!

System Landscape Governance at SAP strives for

  • harmonizing the landscape designs of SAP solutions to reduce complexity
  • balancing change with stability to simplify the adoption of innovation
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