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During every SAP implementation questions  will arise on the usability of the standard SAP user interface.  Although flexibility and usability of the standard SAP UI has changed a  lot over time,  the growing numbers of business users accessing the system will ask for  even more user friendly UI. Beside this there is a growing demand for  integration of SAP business  functionality in alternative user interfaces like MS SharePoint, Flex,  PHP etc.

Customers are often looking  at these alternative platforms since  their end users are more familiar to alternative user interfaces. My  experience is that most customer do not  have a decent process in place that validates the impact of changing the  standard UI or developing an alternative UI. For  this reason I developed a decision tree to support customers. I often  use it in one on one conversations with customers and already had some  very positive feedback. It makes it easier to have a more fundamental  discussion on the impact of UI development.

 

Decision tree

A pdf version can be downloaded here.http://docs.google.com/fileview?id=0BycHpb7okVQvMTQyYWJiZWUtZTQ1YS00ZDg5LTgxZmMtZmE2ZGIzOGQ5Y2E0&hl=en

 

 

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  1. Duncan Mills
    Pim – great finding your blog on this.  I’ve been working on this for some time too.  More from a business process view – and asking questions on which activities in a process need a better UI?  I think it goes to defining the characteristics of that transaction – is a high volume, low complexity transaction, how many people accross the org perform the transaction etc – written a bit here (http://millsone.wordpress.com/2010/03/04/the-future-of-business-system-usability/).  Your Decision tree helps answer the last question of that blog.
    Cheers, Duncan
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    1. Pim de Wit Post author
      Hi Duncan, fully agree. The cost benefit analysis is an important part of the decision to develop an alternative UI. Although i just mentioned it in this tree as a single item in fact there are multiple variables behind this. I’ll try to provide my experiences in my next blog.
      tnx for the input
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  2. Kevin Wilson
    With the advent of SAP NetWeaver Business Client, Enterprise Portal, GUI XT and SAP Scripting you can pretty much accomplish a lot of UI customizing using standard SAP tools….
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    1. Pim de Wit Post author
      Hi Kevin, tnx for the comment. I fully agree that within SAP there are a lot of capabilities to meet requirements once defined.
      This is why the node “Can platform fullfill requirements ?” is added.
      I must add that we have to be aware that we do not use different ways for transactions that are logicaly grouped from an end user perspective.
      So do not use EP for timeregistration and NWBC for declaration. Be aware to create one single user experience for users with a specifiek domein.
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