Report: The State of Worldwide SAP Testing 2021


Wolfgang Platz


I’m excited to share the inaugural State of Worldwide Business Assurance for SAP Solutions 2021. This new study from Capgemini, Sogeti, and Tricentis explores how enterprise organizations manage the unprecedented level of change in today’s rapidly transforming SAP landscapes. Our research spanned more than 750 respondents—across 17 countries and 5 continents—from organizations with revenue over $1B USD.

Access the complete Business Assurance Report here.

You might be wondering why we decided to conduct an SAP-focused quality study when there are already broader quality reports available—including the well-known World Quality Report by Capgemini and Sogeti. The short answer is that SAP has reached a pivotal point, placing extreme pressure on testing.

Even though “systems of engagement” tend to get all the attention, “systems of record” actually consume a much greater share of the enterprise IT budget. These systems, particularly enterprise applications, are the backbone of every company. In addition to their relevance, we see two macro trends with “systems of record” these days. One, they attempt to get themselves closer to customers by adding engagement functions. Two, through their connection with “systems of engagement,” they face an ever-increasing push for faster releases.

SAP stands out as an extraordinary force in the field of enterprise apps. Its size and market penetration are stunning. ~1800 of the world’s largest 2000 companies are currently SAP customers. Moreover, SAP allows an extreme degree of customization, which can be both a blessing and a curse. SAP offers a tremendous amount of functionality to support core verticals, and larger instances have ~30% customization on top of that. Further exacerbating the complexity, an increasingly large number of IoT devices, external supplier/vendor portals, and third-party applications are now being integrated into SAP instances. Ultimately, this means that the vast majority of companies are facing extremely complex testing challenges with every update and every upgrade—to SAP as well as to the many interconnected components.

It just so happens that most SAP customers are currently in the midst of two major transformations. One is a deployment transformation challenge: the move from on-prem to the cloud. The other is a technology challenge: moving from ECC to S/4HANA. Both transformations are explored in-depth within this report. In both cases, many organizations are reporting that more than 60% of migration effort is consumed by quality assurance. This is not terribly surprising, given the complexity mentioned above and the scope of these migrations. And once SAP customers move to the cloud, SAP unleashes innovations at an unprecedented pace – on their schedule. Customers have no choice but to keep up—so testing can’t continue to hold them back.

As this report reveals, SAP testing maturity is not yet where it should be. In fact, it’s not even close. We found that budgeting for SAP end-to-end testing is rare, only about a quarter of enterprises automate a substantial amount of their SAP testing, and such testing shortfalls commonly lead to business impacts ranging from downtime (36%), to work delays (34%), to data issues (28%). But, the good news is that SAP customers appear to be headed down the right path. The majority of respondents are planning to start testing earlier, automate more, and tap advances like AI/ML to achieve the sophisticated, precise testing needed to get the most out of SAP’s truly amazing technology.

We hope that this study inspires you to deeply examine—and continuously optimize—your SAP business assurance strategy as well as your broader quality assurance process beyond SAP. Thank you to everyone who participated in this study, both respondents and researchers.

Read the Business Assurance Report for SAP

We’re pleased to offer our community complimentary access to this groundbreaking 66-page report, and encourage everyone to read it, share it, and discuss the findings. The report contains:

  • Assessments of the current SAP landscape and the importance of strong SAP business assurance practices
  • In-depth analysis of organizations’ awareness about SAP versions and upgrades, adoption roadblocks, and business assurance challenges
  • Detailed interviews with industry experts highlighting real-world challenges in SAP testing

Download now


Wolfgang Platz