The SAP system helps create a common centralized database that runs all of the applications in an organization. The system has been set up in a way that it is versatile enough to handle all of the functions of an organization. Major companies such as IBM and Microsoft use the SAP system to run their operations.
SAP is actually the name of a company that was founded in Germany in 1972. The name of the company is an acronym for "Systeme, Andwendungen, Produkte in der Datenverarbeitung." When translated into English from German, it means "Systems, Applications, Products in Data Processing." SAP was originally created by five former IBM engineer employees.
The SAP system is built around a real-time, data-processing system called "R/3." This system helps companies manage cost accounting, assets and production operations. At the same time, it also helps with archived documents, personnel and materials. This system has been built from the ground up to run on different platforms, including some as old as Windows 2000.
Regardless of the platform on which the SAP system is running, it's best described as a table-driven program. With all of the information laid out in tables, the program allows companies to make quick changes to business requirements.