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No matter what you do in the technology world, we hope that the SAP Community Network has already helped broaden your knowledge, skills, contacts, as well as business opportunities. We want to make this community the most collaborative, enriching experience of its kind. Of course, that means encouraging co-innovation as well as sharing best practices, helpful ideas, and valuable resources in every way possible.

As SAP introduces new programs and services, you can also count on us to inform you of those that are especially relevant and beneficial to SAP Community Network members.

 

Introducing the SAP Referral Program

I’m bringing the SAP Referral program to your attention today because it applies to just about anyone in our community, in just about any industry, in many countries around the world. And the rewards are substantial – up to $50,000 for each lead a registered program member company submits that becomes a won, closed, and paid deal for qualifying SAP products. Thousands of companies are ripe for referral now, particularly considering the current economic environment where the right software solutions can significantly reduce costs while increasing competitive advantage.

Over the past year, SAP has awarded more than $1 million to referral program member companies, and we’d like to double the amount this year. Successful leads have come from business professionals in a broad range of different positions and companies – from consultants on the front lines to technologists and business people behind the scenes. Many didn’t even have the additional advantages of SAP Community Network interaction, which can result in referral opportunities that may not be discovered any other way.

Not in Sales? Not a Problem.
You don’t have to be a sales person to participate. Nor do you need software expertise or any other particular technical background. From industry newcomers to experienced SAP specialists, just about anyone can identify and submit lucrative referral opportunities.

While it helps to know as much as possible about SAP solutions eligible for referral rewards, plenty of member companies have received large payouts without knowing much at all about these products. Here are several case study examples to give you a better sense of how easy and rewarding it can be to participate:

The SAP Referral program requires little effort from you beyond registering your company and following the lead submission guidelines in respective countries where you identify and submit referral opportunities. You may even want to let your customer contacts know about this program, as chances are they will also be eligible to join and potentially submit highly valuable leads – and reap sizable rewards themselves.

As someone in the SAP Community Network, you are likely to have unique insights and connections that increase your company’s potential for SAP referral rewards. You may have some first-hand SAP experiences to share with prospects to help generate successful referrals. Or you may know of a company in the target market that isn’t satisfied with a competing solution. Provide as much information as possible regarding each referral – SAP can do the rest and amply compensate your company for bringing winning opportunities to our attention.

If you’re already a member of the SAP Referral program, please share your views, including if you see ways to improve it.  If you’re hearing about it for the first time, I hope you take a few minutes to learn more. You can register your company in minutes and be “referral ready” as soon as an opportunity arises that’s not right for your business that may be ideal for SAP.  

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9 Comments

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  1. Liz Lovelace
    We are a member of the referral program, and I can attest to what Mark is saying here. The program makes it possible for us to make additional revenue without having a big additional impact on our internal resources. We don’t focus SAP software licenses (nor do we want to) as we specialize in data center solutions and corresponding HP hardware integration. This program opened a new door for us. After submitting just one lead through the referral program, we earned more than $6K!
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  2. Vikash Agrawal
    Hi Mark,

    It is really an exciting program. It is more inclined towards companies rather than individuals.

    I believe SAP shall loose out on all the leads coming from individuals (read contractors) who are not affiliated to organizations. These individuals form a good part of community has immense potential to generate leads.

    Even the consultants who are part of organizations will lost out as lead-to-sales is pretty long process and at the end of it consultants get the least credit for any win…it is always front-ending sales teams:)

    Not sure whether SAP could make it more individual driven…I understand organization needs to come into process to achieve end result.

    Regards
    Vikash

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    1. Mark Yolton Post author
      Hi Vikash:

      See my note above on this topic.  Your suggestion yesterday got things moving within SAP — at least to discuss, discover any obstacles, and consider if and how we could expand to individuals.  Thank you.

      Mark Yolton

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    2. Karl Fahrbach
      Hi Vikash,

      You are right, some of the best leads are coming from consultants or other influencing individuals. While we are structured (for legal reasons) to accept leads only from established businesses/companies, keep in mind that any consultant who has established himself as a business can apply for membership. We will evaluate the application and verify the legitmacy of the business through things like a tax ID number, establishment of an LLC, affiliation with an SAP VAR through our Extended Business Program, and/or other criteria. So if you own your own business, and you think you can funnel great leads to us, apply for membership.

      The SAP Referral Program is not only lucrative way to work with SAP, but can be a great first step into a formal relationship with minimal investment. And don’t forget – if a company registers for the program, any individual in that company can share & track the referred opportunities. And we strongly encourage it! So for very small consultancies, as well as bigger businesses of any kind, there is great opportunity.

      Best regards,
      Karl Fahrbach
      Global Referral Program Lead
      SAP

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  3. Mathew Muthalaly
    Hello Mark,

    There would be many professionals who could refer potential customers but whose employers would not be interested in such revenue or would not even have a process to accept it and account it.

    Is there an avenue open for individual SCN members to participate in this program without involving their employer? 

    Regards
    Mathew.

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    1. Mark Yolton Post author
      Hi Mathew:

      We’re looking at ways to expand this to individuals so that all 1,600,000+ members of our community (plus others) could refer leads and receive an award.  There are some obstacles to this, but we are exploring with the hope to do this.  I agree that there’s a lot of potential here, both benefit to SAP and partners to gain visibility into opportunities, and also to companies and individuals to be rewarded for their roles in identifying them.  We’ll announce any news here in the SAP Community Network if / when such an arrangement can be made. 

      Regards,
      Mark Yolton

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  4. Anonymous
    Thanks Mark for focusing on this. To all: If you have ever encountered a situation where you wanted to help a customer, a prospect, or a business owner acquaintance—but your expertise, capabilities, or solutions weren’t the right fit—you don’t have to leave money on the table. Refer the lead, sit back and let us do the work. Also- think of it this way — any referral customer could spawn business for you in the future. One of our members, Maven Solutions in the UK, realized this quickly. “There is the potential for reciprocal business from the organizations we partner with on referrals,” according to their managing director. “It keeps Maven in people’s minds for a reason other than our excellence in the business intelligence and data warehousing fields.” Right now, in this economy, we all have to think more creatively in order to generate new revenue streams — this program fits the bill.
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  5. Ranjit Giri
    In this hard times the currency to survive in the IT-retail & Service industry is the no. of customers you have with high intimacy & mutal trust, hence recurring revenues.
    A lot of German IT-/computer retailers without ERP knowhow joined SAP Referral Program  to keep competition at bay and out of their installed base. Customers do look for value-adding solutions i.e. CRM, ERP etc., even today. So make sure, your customer is not talking to an IT retailer with other ERP solutions without you knowing. Because once your customers buys from him, this competitor has the best access to the customer: as a trusted advisor. Out of this position he can and will over time pitch all the other Non-SAP IT offerings and services (e.g. hardware, networking, security, virtualization, storage etc.) thus puttin the first retailer out of business. Not immediately, but over time.

    Active SAP Referral Members preempt any competitors and position SAP ERP to their BEST i.e. biggest customers, thus building a higher degree of trust. They can rely on SAP VARs respecting their interests and cooperating rather than competing. SAP Referral Program empowers them to fight back the competition AND make additional revenue on IT infrastructure or their services, once the SAP project is won.
    All of the +200 Referral Members in Germany have understood: if I do not talk (SAP) ERP to my customer, surely someone else will do. So I better be the guy in the first place.

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