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Unlock yourself by moving your SAP workloads to Google Cloud Platform with Vanenburg

Unlock yourself by moving your SAP workloads to Google Cloud Platform with Vanenburg blog
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Hans Don executive team

Hans Don

Chief Technology Officer at Vanenburg

Our mission is to help our customers in making their enterprise systems affordable and agile. This journey typically includes two main tracks. The first track is to modernize the core ERP system and the second track is to establish a connected layer where the logic can be extended with custom applications and services.

Many enterprises which are feeling locked in with a monolithic legacy ERP system reach out to us. We support them in this journey to modernize their ERP core system and migrate (or connect) it to the cloud so that they are ready to embrace the associated benefits.

With our long history in ERP, extensive knowledge of cloud infrastructure, and expertise with cloud-native development we are a trusted partner for many enterprises to guide them in this process. Because of the reliable technical infrastructure, agile deployment options, and innovative power, Vanenburg has strategically chosen Google Cloud Platform (GCP) as the preferred partner for delivering cloud infrastructure.

Many enterprises considering an enterprise application modernization journey are using SAP as their core system. Most of these 55,000 enterprises face the same challenges as they work towards digital transformation: Modernizing their SAP environment and bringing in a proper structure to start benefiting from the cloud. GCP is offering those customers an excellent path to upgrade, run and innovate their SAP environment and benefit further from the integrations, insights, and innovation that GCP provides in addition. The Google infrastructure is perfectly suited for running SAP in production as is proven by certifications and thousands of successfully running SAP instances.

As SAP will force an upgrade of all older versions to S4/HANA by 2027, it creates a sense of urgency for SAP customers to decide what to do next. Looking at the potential of GCP to provide a way forward for those customers and the capabilities Vanenburg brings as a GCP partner and ERP guide, we are excited to support existing SAP customers in the journey of modernizing their ERP and embracing the benefits of the Cloud.

This journey will not be the same for all SAP customers. Based on the organization’s priorities, processes and dependencies, a different path can be taken. In a simple “lift and shift” approach, the applications are moved to the Cloud without changing them. Although this is the lowest level of modernization, the organization will already start benefiting from the Cloud. It will get rid of the hassle around on-premise technical infrastructure and the entire focus can be on the modernization of the application. This can be done later either via the ‘brownfield approach’ or the ‘greenfield approach’. To support this “lift and shift” approach, GCP is offering tooling such as “Migrate for Compute Engine” (formerly known as Velostrata). Using this tooling, the VM’s can be streamed from on-premise to the new landing zone in GCP in a controlled manner.

The ‘brownfield approach’ can be applied by performing an upgrade of the SAP application using the SAP provided tools (f.i. DMO). This can be done before or after the migration to the cloud and this decision should be driven by technical and business considerations. There is also the possibility of the ‘greenfield approach’. In this approach, a new SAP application is started on GCP and the legacy data is migrated to the new application. The typical duration of such a migration is largely determined by the customer complexity (degree of change) and will take on average 8 months for the ‘brownfield approach’ and 11 months for the ‘greenfield approach’.

Once an organization has migrated the ERP workloads to GCP, it will immediately benefit from a cost reduction for storage, high availability, and disaster recovery. In addition, the organization can start to monetize further on the benefits of the Cloud. Analytics can be done using Google’s BigQuery on datasets combining data from SAP and public datasets. In addition, the Machine Learning capabilities of GCP can be added to create intelligence from the data. This can be done for ad hoc research or as an engine that is powering intelligent microservices. Vanenburg provides the following tooling – powered by GCP – to develop microservices or micro-apps on top of ERP in separate decoupled layers.

  • EVA: Our tooling for collaborative coding generates microservices in an agile manner. Quick no-code prototyping with the business, combined with full code capabilities, ensures an immediate result with enterprise-grade quality, low cost, and no vendor lock-in.
  • Collabrr: Our platform for Micro Intelligent apps. A comprehensive approach for provisioning task-driven mobile apps to your enterprise connected seamlessly to the back-end applications.


Having these layers in place in your organization places you in the driver’s seat to decide in which layer custom logic should be implemented. This should be a careful decision based on the type of logic and the flexibility of the core system. The following considerations play a role here:

  • Does the core system allow these customizations without hindering the path for future upgrades?
  • To what extent and how easy the custom logic can be technically and functionally decoupled?
  • What is the difference in TCO for each scenario?


The outcome of this decision can still be an implementation of custom logic in the core layer. Still, at least the organization can make a balanced decision between multiple options and is not locked in anymore.

Google believes strongly in the enterprise readiness of their SAP solutions and created a Cloud Acceleration Program to take away the risk and costs for customers associated with trying out this path. 

Upfront financial incentives to defray infrastructure costs for most SAP cloud migration scenarios and help customers ensure that duplicate costs are not incurred during migration.

If you are using SAP in your business and still have to decide on upgrading to S/4HANA and/or migrate to the Cloud, we will be glad to hear from you and discuss what we can offer you together with Google in the context of this Cloud Acceleration Program. Feel free to reach out to us and contact our team.

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