Digital image of a hand writing on a digitally rendered folder representing Data Archiving in SAP Systems.

Is your data volume management strategy up to date? Archiving your SAP data is a simple yet crucial organisational practice; and when implemented correctly with the assistance of experienced consultants and services, it can help your organisation to speed things up and save money. Regardless of your position or the state of data volume management in your business, this article will help you understand the importance of data archiving and why you need a trusted Data Volume Management partner. 

The effects of data overload

The world of business is becoming more and more digital, with countless transactions taking place on our systems, computers, and other personal electronic devices. All this activity means your system strains under the weight of managing that huge volume of data generated by transactions. 

As productive SAP databases grow, resource consumption and administration effort increase while system performance worsens. Almost daily, SAP system users work with various transactions and multiple reports to access the data in the system. They tend to access the latest data or more recently generated data more frequently than data that was generated during the last few years. Depending on the usage intensity, you can establish how long this data needs to be available in the database or in an archive system. 

It also means response times considerably lag, SAP reports run more slowly, take longer to complete simple queries, and don’t operate as effectively during key business procedures. Moving unused, business complete transactions to an external archive or storage solution relieves a significant load, allowing both your hardware and software to operate at top efficiency. 

To keep the size of the database tables as small as possible, today the only solution is to use SAP data archiving to archive (and therefore deleting) those completed purchase orders, processed invoices, and completed deliveries which are rarely accessed. Therefore, to safeguard your SAP system performance, you should remove and archive data records from the database at regular intervals.

With the implementation of the POPIA law in South Africa, for example, people will have more rights regarding their data privacy. Compliance will depend on how businesses manage the enormous amount of personal information for instance. Without proper data management, your data security measures can conflict with people’s new rights to request changes to the information you have on them. 

What exactly is Data Archiving in SAP? 

A circle graphical representation of data archiving in SAP Systems, mentioning each step of the data archiving process.

Data archiving in SAP is the process of finding business complete data that is no longer in use and moving it from ERP production systems into external archive or storage systems for long-term retrieval. Data archiving within SAP also initiates the end of the data lifecycle. With the introduction of SAP Information Lifecycle Management (ILM), SAP data archiving also forms the basis in SAP ILM. This comforts many organisations because they do not have to change to SAP ILM for the already functioning data archiving processes in the SAP systems.

Data can be retained and stored for a long time with the help of secure data archiving using the standard Archive Development Kit (ADK) within SAP systems. SAP offers compliant and certified archive/storage solutions to keep essential data for use as needed. The archived data is kept available and intact once stored in an archive or storage system.

Even though data archiving is a standard functionality in every SAP system, you must still implement and manage it. Before starting the actual data archiving process, you need to consider several critical aspects, like how long should closed transactions remain in the database before archiving? How do you archive your data from an SAP system? In what sequence should the closed transactions be archived? Do you require additional archive conditions to be added using Business Add-ins? Should open items be closed before archiving? Can you successfully display data from archive or storage system?

To completely satisfy the various legal regulations around archiving your SAP data, it is crucial to include your legal, finance or tax departments in the decisions associated with online residence and archive retention periods during the data archiving project.

What are the benefits of archiving data? 

We’ve mentioned the importance of regulatory compliance and the inefficiencies that come with managing your volumes of data. These are just two of many crucial reasons most organisations need a robust archiving strategy. Here are some of the key benefits of data archiving: 

  • Improved analytics and business intelligence insights
  • Significantly improved SAP system performance
  • Reduced backup time and downtime during upgrades, client copies and client refreshes
  • Reduced hardware and cloud storage costs
  • Aligned data-related statutory regulations
  • Access historical archived information when you require it

Archiving assessment on open transactions can assist organisations to optimise business processes by performing the correct closing of SAP documents. The results of the assessment initiates awareness of the meaning of document statuses, expected by the archiving programs. Once more historical data is in a complete status, it will increase the quality of data archiving.

Your data management partner of choice 

GlueData is a specialist in data consultancy with mature expertise and a deep focus on SAP data solutions. We help global SAP clientele to master their data easily and simply. Data Archiving experts at Gluedata can help your organisation develop a Data Archiving Strategy to gain productivity and save money by improving business intelligence insights and SAP system performance. GlueData provides ongoing support to the project team to ensure limited downtime and seamless archiving of data. Get in touch with a GlueData archiving specialist today.