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We’ll combine two of the strongest creators of anecdotes in the SAP world: Hasso and company cars. We zoom back years ago in this small village in the southwest of Germany. Peter T. and Hasso* have to go to a meeting, but this meeting is not in the small village of Walldorf, but in the neighboring village St. Leon-Rot. They agree on sharing the ride, so that they can use the car-pool lanes through the Walldorfian prairie.

Hasso drives and while talking to Peter, he gets excited about SAP’s company car policy.
“Look”, he says to Peter, pointing to the very car they are driving, “don’t we offer the employees great benefits with the company cars? Nearly everybody is entitled to get one after a trial period. And once they got their 200 horse power low rider cars, they get all the expenses reimbursed. They have their gas card, which allows them to tank without cash, their tires are changed from summer to winter and vice versa, and they don’t even have to drive the car to the mechanic. They just pick it up from and return it to the office.”

Peter T. nods silently and gives Hasso to understand that they are in complete accordance with their opinions. They are nearly half-way to St. Leon-Rot.

“And not only that, if there is a defect on the car, no repairs have to be paid. SAP takes care of that. And best of all: they get their cars cleaned for free**. They just bring the cleaning bill and SAP pays for it!”.

Again Peter cannot otherwise than murmur agreeingly.

“So tell me, why do the colleagues always complain? There’s nothing to complain about!?”

While Peter shrugs his shoulders, the sound of the car changes. Well, it not only changes, the sound dies. The engine has stopped and the car rolls out in the middle of the country side. What had happened? The car ran out of fuel.

The only thing that SAP did not include in the company car policy is – the fueling service. And it’s still not included!!!

* As a matter of fact, while researching the anecdotes, Peter T. told me that it was not Hasso, but Rudi M., another long term employee with SAP, with whom he drove and who was marveling about SAP’s company car policy.

** The free car cleaning was removed from the list some time later, when one colleague used his car for transporting building materials in the trunk to his new home. What happened was that some of the building materials, better known as cement, got wet and became concrete-hard. The car cleaners literally had to hammer it out of the car and the house-building colleague presented a cleaning bill with an unusual high amount to SAP.

More anecdotes can be found in the Humour@SAP weblog series.

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  1. Frank Gales
    ** The guy did not transport cement but only yellow sand. Pictures of the messed car were put all over EVZ building with a comment from Dietmar Hopp (CEO) that this collegue got taken away his company car and that inside cleaning would no more be paid by SAP.
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