SAP authorization concept made easy
Manage your SAP authorizations efficiently, successfully and securely.
Identities, roles and authorizations are extremely important for using SAP - but creating and managing them is a complex and time-consuming task. The variety of possible combinations of rights is almost unmanageable - and it is precisely here that a systematic overview is of the utmost importance in order to prevent compliance conflicts.
The solution to this problem is a comprehensive authorization concept, which in turn brings its own challenges. We can support you in creating, optimizing and managing the authorization concept with sophisticated tools that take a large part of the work off your hands.
But first things first.
What is an SAP authorization concept?
An authorization concept in SAP defines at a fundamental level the rules according to which users are created in the system and how roles and authorizations are assigned. The concept therefore ensures that transactions and services in the system are protected against unauthorized access.
The aim of these rules is to always assign users exactly the roles and authorizations that they need for their tasks - and ideally only these. This protects against both unintentional errors and targeted misuse. With a well-structured authorization concept, possible dependencies and compliance conflicts are also taken into account - they do not have to be checked manually when assigning roles and authorizations.
Advantages of an authorization concept
A well-developed authorization concept creates clarity about responsibilities and processes. New employees can be easily integrated into the system using existing rules; if existing users take on new tasks, there are also clear rules for them on how to obtain new authorizations - and how to hand over those they may no longer need. Complex authorizations and relationships can be described as authorization objects.
An authorization concept therefore saves an enormous amount of time and effort and is considered a central strategic component of holistic Identity & Access Management (IAM).
This not only saves a great deal of time and work for all colleagues involved in assigning and controlling rights. It offers all employees greater security, for example because it prevents users from having more rights than necessary on a day-to-day basis and thus inadvertently making costly mistakes. This prevents damage.
The effect: a good authorization concept promotes the productivity of all employees. And it saves administrators a lot of time and headaches.
How is an authorization concept created?
There is no universal template for implementing an authorization concept - the requirements in individual companies are too individual and too different. Ultimately, the authorizations must be based on the actual needs of the users.
A thorough analysis of the existing tasks, roles and processes in your company is therefore of central importance. At the same time, existing legal standards are incorporated into the concept, as are all other regulations that have been developed within the company, for example in terms of compliance.
Important components of an authorization concept
Some components are of central importance for the concept:
- Aim of the concept
What requirements must the SAP system fulfill? What objectives should the concept fulfill?
- Fundamental principles
How should important principles (e.g. principle of least privilege, segregation of duties) be reflected in the concept?
- Legal framework
Which legal norms, internal company regulations on compliance and other topics must be taken into account?
- Naming conventions
Many components in the SAP system cannot be changed after the initial naming - clear conventions are therefore necessary and also make it easier to find them.
- Responsibilities and role concept
Which roles or users are responsible for certain tasks? Which authorizations are required for certain tasks? This also concerns the question of who must approve the assignment of authorizations.
- User and authorization management
How are new users assigned, which processes and conventions must be observed when assigning authorizations?
Other aspects are, for example, the question of which interfaces there are to other systems and how these are managed, and which rights must be provided for special cases or emergencies.
Challenges in the implementation of an SAP authorization concept
Developing and implementing an authorization concept presents companies with major challenges on several levels:
- Time and resources required
Creating the concept at all levels is extremely time-consuming, its implementation no less so.
The complexity of the concept increases exponentially with the number of different roles and tasks in the company, as the dependencies also become more diverse.
A comprehensive concept can hardly be explained in simple diagrams and summaries; this is an inevitable consequence:
- Need for training
All persons responsible for the concept and its implementation must be thoroughly trained; they must then also be given the opportunity on an ongoing basis to find out about changes and updates and implement them if necessary
An authorization concept has major consequences for user administration in particular, as all work steps must be adapted to the requirements of the concept. Authorization profiles must match the existing roles and tasks in your company exactly.
However, practical experience in user and rights administration can also show that certain regulations of the authorization concept cause problems in day-to-day use. In this case, it may be necessary to make changes to the concept, which can entail time-consuming processes because all dependencies on other authorizations must also be checked. And then further training is sometimes required.
Ideally, an authorization concept should therefore be based on a thorough examination of the status quo and already take into account the approvals and work steps required in everyday use.
Advantages of automated creation of the SAP authorization concept
With suitable tools, many of these problems can be avoided or the associated effort can be significantly reduced. The automated creation of a comprehensible authorization concept saves you many manual work steps.
The decisive step here is role mining, in which the structure and processes of your company are analyzed on the basis of your trace data. You can then select the appropriate and important parameters to serve as the basis for your optimal authorization concept.
Using the mathematical model of our SIVIS Authorization Robot, we optimize the roles for your SAP system and create a concept that is precisely tailored to the needs of your users and the requirements of your company.
With SIVIS Enterprise Security, you can implement the authorization concept of the future today; time-consuming manual planning of processes and authorizations is a thing of the past.
With SIVIS Application Management Services (AMS), we can also provide you with targeted support in the continuous management of SAP authorizations.