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SAP Application Management Services -- or SAP AMS -- may be an effective way to help IT teams manage a complicated ERP ecosystem.
Just as many organizations have turned to managed service providers (MSPs) to handle various aspects of their IT infrastructure, an increasing number of organizations running SAP systems are turning to third parties for SAP AMS.
Application management services allows companies to offload functional and technical support, application maintenance, system enhancements, data governance, analytics and more. AMS providers often function as a virtual extension of the organization, sometimes colocating employees with their customers who run SAP systems.
What makes AMS different than MSPs is the level of specialization involved. Whereas MSPs typically focus on IT infrastructure, SAP AMS is centered on the SAP ERP system specifically, along with the various applications and components associated with it. AMS providers also differs from system integrators, which typically engage with their clients on a project basis; whereas AMS tends to be structured around longer-term contracts.
Here are a few examples of AMS services available for SAP customers:
- Help desk services, including functional and technical support for end users, user provisioning and maintenance, and similar services.
- Data governance and data management, which encompass data quality, data integration, data security, compliance and master data management.
- SAP cloud management, including provisioning, system monitoring and tuning, security and data sovereignty.
Many AMS companies help to guide their customers in a process of continuous improvement. After an ERP system goes live, organizations' leaders can (and should) explore ways of getting additional benefits from the technology. AMS providers have the expertise to help business leaders identify such opportunities, plan for improvement and work with leaders to execute on those plans.
Benefits of SAP AMS
SAP AMS provides many of the same benefits as other managed services. First and foremost, it enables companies to focus on their core competencies, without needing to develop extensive SAP expertise in-house. Organizations that outsource AMS benefit from predictable costs and availability of staffing resources.
In addition, AMS clients benefit from the concentrated knowledge, expertise and best practices of their service provider, which typically brings a deep bench of expertise to the table, and a capacity for sharing information and best practices. That gives them an edge over in-house teams, which must work from a narrower frame of reference.
Because AMS is built around long-term relationships, SAP customers should carefully consider their options, identify key priorities and choose their service provider carefully. The right AMS provider can help an organization maximize the value of their technology, reduce risk and save money.