What is SAP? SAP, started in 1972 by five former IBM employees in Mannheim, Germany, states that it is the world’s largest inter-enterprise software company and the world’s fourth-largest independent software supplier, overall. Ask your SAP questions at ITKnowledgeExchange. com The original name for SAP was German: Systeme, Anwendungen, Produkte, German for “Systems Applications and Products. ” The original SAP idea was to provide customers with the ability to interact with a common corporate database for a comprehensive range of applications.
Gradually, the applications have been assembled and today many corporations, including IBM and Microsoft, are using SAP products to run their own businesses. SAP applications, built around their latest R/3 system, provide the capability to manage financial, asset, and cost accounting, production operations and materials, personnel, plants, and archived documents. The R/3 system runs on a number of platforms including Windows 2000 and uses the client/server model. The latest version of R/3 includes a comprehensive Internet-enabled package.
SAP has recently recast its product offerings under a comprehensive Web interface, called mySAP. com, and added new e-business applications, including customer relationship management (CRM) and supply chain management (SCM). As of January 2007, SAP, a publicly traded company, had over 38,4000 employees in over 50 countries, and more than 36,200 customers around the world. SAP is turning its attention to small- and-medium sized businesses (SMB). A recent R/3 version was provided for IBM’s AS/400 platform.
R/3 is the comprehensive set of integrated business applications from SAP, the German company that states it is the market and technology leader in business application software. R/3 replaced an earlier system, R/2, which is still in use. R/3 uses the client/server model and provides the ability to store, retrieve, analyze, and process in many ways corporate data for financial analysis, production operation, human resource management, and most other business processes.
A recent release of R/3 makes it possible to get to the R/3 database and applications through Internet access and Web browsers. A sales representative can initiate the workflow for a sales order by filling out an electronic form on a laptop that will be “translated” into input for the R/3 system. Other interfaces such as Lotus Notes can also be used. The Web implementation adheres to the Workflow Client API standard of the Workflow Management Coalition (WfMC). A more recent version of R/3 adds features designed to speed product delivery by helping to manage the supply chain.
Getting started with R/3 To explore how R/3 is used in the enterprise, here are some additional resources: Ask the Expert: MySAP vs. SAP R/3: What is the difference between MySAP and R/3? Ask the Expert: SAP R/3 to ERP 6. 0: Upgrade the network infrastructure? : Should you upgrade your network infrastructure when moving from R/3 to ERP 6. 0? Important points for planning a R/3 upgrade project: Learn which important points you need to consider prior to an R/3 upgrade. Lack of support not the only reason to upgrade to SAP ERP 6. : Standard support is ending for many versions of R/3 in the coming years. Read some of the other business drivers for an upgrade. CONTRIBUTORS: Cecil Roets LAST UPDATED: 24 Sep 2008 Read more about R/3: – More information about R/3 is available at the SAP Web site . – SearchSAP. com is a web portal dedicated to serving SAP IT professionals. We have an extensive collection of links related to R/3. Do you have something to add to this definition? Let us know. Send your comments to [email protected] com