I went to the local SAP Users Group Chapter meeting today. I don’t always go, as the agenda is often full of content that isn’t applicable to me, or there’s maybe only one session I want to see and it’s hard to justify the trip. This agenda wasn’t that enticing either, but it was being held at a new location, Johns Hopkins at Mount Washington, so I drove over.
Traffic was worse than I expected, so I showed up a couple minutes after the first speaker started. Not an auspicious entrance, though I spotted a couple people I’ve met at prior ASUG meetings, and one former colleague. And the first session was about Solution Manager, which we’re using to a minimal degree, though nothing to do with ChaRM.
Top 10 Tips to Keep You Out of Trouble When Implementing ChaRM
Speaker: Nathan Williams
SCN ID (I think) – SolManiac
I asked a question at the end, about someone having an existing, mature, non-SAP specific change management tool, and got a non-answer about blueprinting. Others asked about interfacing other systems (e.g., Remedy) which seems a logical question to look into. I suppose if a company has no tool, or an expensive dysfunctional one, then Solution Manager should be looked at for change control.
Sorry this picture is fuzzy; I tried an available light shot with limited success.
HR Security Tips & Tricks (Not In Your Manual)
Speaker: Brett Deeds
SCN: (not found)
We’re not using SAP for HR, so I wasn’t very engaged during this session. Brett knows his stuff, and really showed how an overhaul of security rights may be time-consuming, but is worth the effort in not just securing a system for audit purposes, but to keep data headaches to a minimum.
Brett gave this material at the 2010 ASUG Annual Conference (session 2012), so if you have access to the conference proceedings you can see the slides, ASUG member or not(05/19/2010 @ 2:00 PM – 2:45 PM).
One takeaway for me: the use of ‘ ‘ as a value that prevents people from executing menus. Not sure if that makes sense later, but it did during the presentation.
Crowd Scene I
Available light, handheld.
SRM 7.0 Upgrade Experience
Speaker: Dow Weeks
SCN: not found.
While, again, we don’t run SAP SRM, the parallels to non-SAP methods, and to other SAP software besides SRM, and in particular, managing an upgrade from older to newer versions is always a good story. Dow spoke from the experience of managing a war-room for an implementation. And this was an implementation not a strict technical upgrade due to the changes with a 7.0 version, including major workflow revisions. The stories about vendor catalogs were fascinating, as were the insight into researchers who can “order anything they want”. I believe it – I worked for some of them as an undergraduate.
Dow presented at the recent 2010 ASUG Fall Focus events. I found 3 sessions online that he spoke or co-spoke during. It sounds like he may put this topic in for the ASUG 2011 conference, and I’ll recommend it to my peers.
The photo is a little sharper as I put the flash back on. But that highlights people in the back of the room more than the speaker.
SAP Business Social Network Overview
SCN ids: not found
This topic was the most mysterious on the agenda, and the presenters kept up the mystery during breaks by not revealing their subject matter. They had quite the repartee going, with first one side of the room speaking (Jim on the left, no Ron on the left), and then the other. The slides were all marked confidential, and the topic was an SAP pilot project that has a few testers, but is not guaranteed to be a product. I asked if this was bloggable and got a qualified yes. So I can talk about it, but only in general terms. I looked around the web and found more than I’ll share here; ASUG members have the slide deck now in the MD-Baltimore Chapter space, for those who know where to look.
globalbusinessincubator is a good key word.
I found this link online, while listening to the content:
So if one of your daily tasks was as follows:
- “Create adaptive models that generate high-value data elements (e.g., performance predictions, behavior classifiers) for inclusion in the Content Initiative’s aggregate reference file of SAP customer and third-party data.”
I would say that’s a high-end task list, and that companies like Google and Microsoft are going after the same dog food (just sayin’).
(And I am not making up the “nuggets” part of that URL – honest!)
Photo, available light, a little less fuzzy than the others, and obfuscates the slide content. Which I could read from the back of the room.
Crowd Scene II
Optimize a Long Hanging Fruit / Accounts Payable / and Implement Expandable Imaging Technology
Brian Shannon “Principal Process Strategist Business Services”
Okay, doing finance, or IDOCs at the end of a long day can be testing the audience stamina. On the plus side, we’ve learned to save the big prizes until the end, meaning no one got up and wandered off if they were there when Brian started. I’m not in AP, though the coverage was interesting and didn’t veer into too technical or too much marketing hype (though I could have done without seeing and hearing the vendor name once or twice per slide).
Dual screens – in this room, since it was really 2 rooms opened up, each projector acted separately. Whether they could have shown the same image I don’t know, but it was sort of fun to see each presenter orchestrate simultaneous “next slide please” with their respective button pushers.
And the best part of the day? I didn’t need to listen to any whinging about “SAP Inside Track” and other fluff. Just hard knocks useful stuff (SAP Labs, excepting).
[UPDATE: 11-Nov-2010 – link to ASUG blog – registration required – a lot of the same stuff, but not entirely]