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5 new ActiveControl features that take you closer to DevOps for SAP

What do global leaders in consumer goods, banking, generic pharmaceuticals, agricultural irrigation, and telecommunications all have in common?

(Answer at the bottom)

It really has been a busy few months here at Basis Technologies, what with the addition of several big-name SAP users to our customer list, the launch of Testimony and for me personally – the release of ActiveControl 7.0 in September resulting in a lot of new and existing customers wanting to benefit from the latest innovations in DevOps for SAP.

Here are just five of the new features in ActiveControl 7.0 that have had me packing my suitcase and heading off to Sydney, Boston, Wisconsin, Tel Aviv, Seattle and Frankfurt in recent months.

1. Automated Approvals

I was already starting to get excited about Automated ‘Exception-Based’ Approvals way back in March when our development team was putting the finishing touches on it – and as expected –  it is already proving to be a really popular feature in ActiveControl 7.0.

Automated Exception-based Approvals is all about cutting out unnecessary approval bottlenecks, by automatically running the appropriate ShiftLeft analysis checks and then  automatically approving transports if no issues are identified.

If you have ever been in the frustrating position of an urgent fix being delayed into QA (and Production) because your FICO team lead was in a meeting or the Development Manager was out to lunch or perhaps you yourself are an overloaded Change or Project Manager who would prefer to focus your limited time on the real issues instead of being a bottleneck on the 90% of SAP changes that have no underlying issues – exception-based approvals could be just the thing for you.

2. Partial Testing

If I had a pound for every time a Developer or Functional consultant has asked me over the past few years why they can’t sign off unit testing of their own individual transports in Transport Expresso, I would definitely be a very wealthy man.

Fortunately I won’t have to worry about appearing in the Paradise Papers any time soon, as ActiveControl 7.0 introduces the ability for transport owners to sign off testing of their own transports and move them into QA as soon as they are ready, instead of having to wait for the sometimes restrictive Business Task level sign-off that was possible in previous versions of Transport Expresso.

3. ShiftLeft: SOD Check

The 60th addition to the suite of automated ShiftLeft analyzers is one that will definitely be of interest to our customers with a particular focus on segregation of duties.

Want to make sure the same person in your organization cannot perform two specific (configurable) sign-offs in your approvals process between Development and Production?

You need ‘Shiftleft: 0060 SOD Check’ in your life.

4. JIRA integration

In recent years more and more Basis Technologies’ customers have shown an interest in the Integration Framework to help increase efficiency by automating the interactions between ActiveControl and the other third-party ALM ticketing and testing tools that they use.

ActiveControl has long offered out-of-the-box integration with tools including ServiceNow, Remedy, and Solution Manager, this year we added JIRA integration to the standard product for a customer over in the US who – certainly in my own experiences – is at the very forefront of agile in SAP.

Putting aside a large modern office with the most post-it-notes per square inch of wall space that I have seen in my professional career, this super-slick eCommerce company is also the first SAP customer I have come across that does daily releases into Production… the middle of the business working day.

To reflect their agile ways of working, this company wanted a bi-directional integration between ActiveControl and JIRA so that Business Tasks were automatically created, and transports and ticket statuses get automatically moved forward at the appropriate time – with as little manual intervention as possible.

The net result? A business user community that can continue to work in the JIRA system that they are already trained and familiar with, and a technical SAP team that can benefit from all of the automation features of ActiveControl 7.0.

5. S/4HANA transition

Earlier this year, one of the largest companies in the world chose Basis Technologies to help them with their S/4 HANA transition.

If you have already started looking at S/4HANA in any detail, you will know that there are many legacy ECC objects that are not applicable in S/4HANA, but that there are also many objects that are still relevant and can/should be synchronized into your new S/4 system during the course of your migration project.

The DevMax component of our toolset has automated the otherwise costly time-consuming effort of synchronizing (aka Dual Maintaining aka Re-keying) change across N+n development tracks for many years – and with some enhancements in recent months – is now just as relevant for synchronizing between legacy systems with S/4HANA.

If you are interested in how ActiveControl 7.0 can help with your S/4HANA transition or in more general terms of improving your current SAP Change & Release processes, please get in touch.

*Answer:  Access to the very latest automation available in SAP for DevOps.

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