Licensing policies for Indirect Access to SAP enterprise software systems have traditionally been extremely complicated, leaving many IT managers open to costly surprises. In April 2018, SAP announced a new Indirect/Digital Access pricing policy with the hope of simplifying the rules for Indirect Access licensing and minimizing license audit surprises.

The new Indirect/Digital Access pricing model addresses the licensing rules for accessing the SAP Digital Core without directly logging into the SAP system. It’s relatively clear that a license is required for a human user accessing the system directly or indirectly. The view gets a lot cloudier when it comes to third-party applications, devices, bots and other automated systems that require access to the Digital Core.

What’s different now?

Determining if your organization can realize significant savings on your SAP licensing costs requires understanding the new SAP pricing model, which is no mean feat. SAP now defines Indirect Access as “Digital Access” and calculates license requirements based on the type and number of system-generated business records or “documents” created via third-party access to the Digital Core.

SAP has identified nine different document types and assigned a multiplier to each type to determine pricing. There is a cost associated with the initial creation of each type of document, but no additional cost for reads, updates, deletes or creation of the additional documents automatically generated in the system when the first document is created. The more documents created in your system, the less you’ll pay per document.