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A key focus area of our ASUG Enterprise Architecture Community is helping Enterprise Architects to build their Business Technology Roadmaps (to put things in context, you could My Diary – ASUG Pre conference Seminar “Enterprise Architecture – SAP Roadmaps, Innovation & Value”).
 
In May of this year, at the 2010 ASUG Annual Conference and SAP SAPPHIRE® NOW in Orlando, we met with SAP Co-CEO Jim Snabe and discussed how SAP could better communicate SAP Roadmap information (current solution portfolio, planned innovations, and future directions) to SAP customers and ASUG members. These discussions prompted the ASUG Enterprise Architecture Community to start working with SAP to deliver full-day SAP Roadmap sessions at a number of cities in North America and consequently at SAP TechEd, Las Vegas.
 
In parallel, we worked with SAP to help drive the creation of a dedicated SAP Roadmap page in SAP Service Marketplace. We were therefore very pleased when, during our My Diary – ASUG Pre conference Seminar “Enterprise Architecture – SAP Roadmaps, Innovation & Value” at SAP TechEd Las Vegas, SAP chose to make the disclosure about the imminent (and eagerly anticipated) publication of said Roadmaps. You see, prior to this milestone, this public unveiling, the SAP Roadmaps were available to SAP employees only – through their Intranet and in-house Portal pages. So it really is to be considered a red letter day, when the lid is lifted and the business software house decides to share such coveted knowledge with SAP customers and aficionados.

Other SAP Users Groups such as the German User group (DSAG) are also actively engaging with Senior SAP Management on strategical initatives having a clear mandate on transparent and reliable SAP Roadmap information and influencing.

To see what all the fuss is about, you can view the SAP Roadmaps at service.sap.com/roadmap (Note: You need to login as a SAP Customer to view this information).

 

SAP Roadmaps Structure

 
To date, we’ve received very good feedback from ASUG members and SAP Customers alike on both SAP’s new Roadmap Framework and this new SAP Roadmap webpage. See the ‘Getting Started FAQ for SAP Roadmaps’ section included in this blog.
 
ASUG Enterprise Architecture Community will continue to provide feedback to SAP on their Roadmaps as well as on the communication of this information to SAP customers. Naturally, you can also share your views, comments, or questions about the Roadmaps through the feedback channel on the SAP Roadmap webpage.

 

Check out the new SAP Roadmap webpage and make it one of your key resources for SAP Roadmap information. 

Useful Links

 

 

 

Getting Started FAQ for SAP Roadmaps
 
SERVICE.SAP.COM/Roadmap
 
What is the purpose of the new SAP roadmaps?
As a trusted advisor, SAP has a clear mandate to provide clarity to customers on how they can generate significant benefits with the current portfolio of solutions, as well as how SAP future innovations will help them to create new value. The new SAP roadmaps for industries, lines of business, and technology help to meet this goal by highlighting the solutions available today, the planned innovations, and future directions of the entire SAP portfolio of solutions.
 
The new SAP roadmaps will help SAP continue to be highly relevant to the industry and line-of-business buyers while strengthening competitive leadership through end-to-end solutions.
 
To summarize, the SAP roadmaps provide customers with a complete overview of:
 
* The current solutions available today for industries, lines of business, and technology
* The planned innovations for the upcoming release cycle
* The future directions being considered to allow SAP to get feedback from customers regarding future innovations areas on specifications and functional development areas
 
What is the target audience for the SAP roadmaps?
SAP roadmaps are primarily aimed at key lines-of-business managers & executives across the 24 industries covered by SAP.
 
What is really ‘new’ with the SAP roadmaps?
SAP roadmaps are primarily designed for industries and lines of business, and are not product oriented anymore. Therefore, the SAP roadmaps highlight the planned innovations and future directions of the entire SAP portfolio of solutions which are relevant for a specific line of business and/or industry including: the SAP Business Suite, the SAP BusinessObjects portfolio, the SAP technology and SAP partner solution extensions, and SAP’s on-demand offerings. As indicated before, this new approach allows SAP to continue to be highly relevant to the line of business and industry buyers while strengthening competitive advantage through comprehensive end-to-end solutions.
 
In addition, SAP roadmaps have been specifically designed to allow direct feedback from customers on the relevance of SAP’s planned innovations and future directions for them – and the identification of future innovation areas of common interest that can lead to deeper collaboration between SAP and its customers.
 
How are the SAP roadmaps structured?

The structure represents the second major area of change in the SAP roadmaps. The SAP roadmaps do now include three major sections:
 
* Today section which provides a complete overview of the current capabilities available and associated benefits for a specific line of business and/or industry
* Planned Innovations section which provides a complete overview on all the innovations planned in the upcoming releases aligned with the major customer needs
* Future Directions section which provides a high-level overview of the current ideas being considered for our future innovations areas aligned with the key market trends
 
The SAP roadmaps also include key links to existing sales and marketing materials which can provide more detailed information and proof points to customers
 
What are the benefits for customers?

As the world’s leading provider of business software, SAP delivers solutions that accelerate business innovations and growth for the entire industries and the economy at large. In today’s economy, SAPs customers expect instant value from their enterprise software as well as the ability to plan for the future. The new SAP roadmaps help to meet these two requirements at the same time by highlighting the solutions that can meet today’s and future key needs of their lines of business, in their specific industries, and aligned with the major market trends.
 
In addition, and as indicated before, the new SAP roadmaps provide a unique opportunity for SAP customers to provide direct feedback on the relevance of planned innovations and future directions for them – and to collaborate with SAP on specific innovation areas.
 
To summarize, with the new SAP roadmaps customers can get:
 
* Insight into the SAP roadmaps for industries, lines of business, and technology highlighting the current solutions and plans as well as the ideas being considered for SAP future innovation areas
* Ability to provide feedback and to collaborate with SAP on future innovations
* Long-term transparency and commitment
 
 

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7 Comments

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  1. Sascha Kuhlmann
    Hey Paul,

    you did a great job pushing this forward. It was a big haul, but finally SAP created something which delivers Value to our customers.
    Thanks for pushing these topics and the EA Community!

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  2. Scott Feldman
    Paul,
    Great blog on the Roadmap release and from the SAP viewpoint you are 100% correct – this is tremendous information for customers and we would encourage everyone to go check it out.

    SAP is also looking for feedback; check the button right on the http://service.sap.com/roadmap page to provide your input on improving the materials plus also what you would like to see that may not be posted yet. 

    Roadmaps are a continuous process; check the site frequently for updates.

    scott

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  3. Kieran O'Connor
    Paul, great to see such a stir created by the publication to SMP. I’d love to see such material coming directly into the SCN domain in future – to broaden exposure even further.
    In the meantime, it’s nice to see a schedule of Live Expert Sessions planned for Nov/Dec around each Industry, Technology, LoB Road Map. That schedule’s also visible through the SMP link (http://service.sap.com/roadmap) you include in the blog.
    You mention a Feedback option on SMP. One of the reasons it’d be great to get this kind of material on SCN would be to enhance that type of feedback to incorporate a forum, where painstakers could transparently exchange views on the docs.
    Come to think of it – wonder if that’s in the pipeline anyway? Even though the material’s on SMP, a forum could still be accommodated on your old community stomping ground at CW. Course, that’s not me sticking my neck out. It’d have to be someone close to the goods rigging out such a space.
    Anyway, great to read your blog and always good to get your feedback.

    Regards,
    Kieran

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    1. Barbara KUHN
      Thanks for the feedback Kieran. Definitely, the proposal to accommodate feedback through a collaboration workspace forum is an interesting prospect. We’d certainly need a dedicated moderator to stage this. But overall, we could capture holistic feedback and incorporate constructive criticism and improvements for our Road Maps and similar initiatives.
      Also, I’m glad you pointed out the Live Expert Session. We’ve  got over 600 participants registered so far.
      Barbara
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  4. Barbara KUHN
    Paul, I’m delighted to see your take on the Road Maps release. It’s thanks to direct feedback from yourself and members of ASUG and DSAG that we were able to make the material available. In early 2010, we realized that growing demand from customers and partners to understand the SAP Road Maps could no longer be sufficiently addressed by individual sessions – we needed a more scalable approach.
    Here’s to even more productive collaborations in future.
    Barbara
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  5. PETER MAIER
    Hello Paul,

    Your customary enthusiasm has done wonders to raise awareness of this topic through the customer community. And yes, as you point out, it’s a notable move. Even though http://service.sap.com/roadmap is currently restricted to existing customers and partners, it’s a significant step along a progressive path of transparent information-sharing. SAP is keen to pursue and promote similar measures for the benefit of all our customers and users.
    Keep up the good work.

    Peter

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  6. Charles Neal
    At Enterprise Architecture Days in Chicago we were informed that consistent, well structured SAP roadmaps would soon be available in a central, easy to access location.

    Two weeks later pin a pre-conference session at SAP TechEd 2011, I was informed that the website was complete and available.

    I am sharing this website (http://service.sap.com/roadmap) with many colleagues internal to my company.  I am encouraging all to give feedback.

    A BIG thank you to all who made this a reality!

    This goes to show, SAP is listening AND responding!

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