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In this blog, I describe the versions of SAP Talent and Org Visualization by Nakisa released since the products became solution extensions of SAP in 2007. What are the differences?  How has the product evolved?

Overview of the released versions until now:

1.      SAP Talent Visualization by Nakisa (TVN) 1.0

2.      SAP TVN  1.1

                             I.            SAP TVN  1.1 SP1

                             II.            SAP TVN  1.1 SP2

3.      SAP TVN 2.0

                            I.            SAP TVN 2.0 SP1

                            II.            SAP TVN 2.0 SP2

                           III.            SAP TVN 2.0 SP3

4.      SAP TVN 2.1

5.      SAP Talent & Org Visualization by Nakisa (SAP TVN and SAP OVN) 3.0

                             I.            SAP TVN and SAP OVN 3.0 SP1

                             II.            SAP TVN and SAP OVN 3.0 SP2

So to make my blog more organized, I have written my comments on each version in the following sections:

SAP Talent Visualization by Nakisa (TVN) 1.0

This was the original solution extension release and offered the first insight into the product’s future.  It was based heavily on the pre-SAP product but pre-configured to suit the SAP HCM environment.  The solution required a lot of configuration / customization to implement.

1.      Release Date: 30 Nov 2007 / End of Maintenance: 31 Mar 2013

2.     Modules available:

                             i.      OrgChart

                             ii.      OrgModeler

                            iii.      Human Capital Management Dashboard (HCMD)

                            iv.      SuccessionPlanning for the Talent Management Specialist (TMS)

3.     Packages:

              i.      STVN 1.0.NET

4.     Screenshots

1.0

1.0

5.      Main new features: First release

6.       Platform: .NET

SAP TVN 1.1

This release introduces more features, as well fixing many bugs in the original release. The main thing as I can see with this release, is the introduction of the accelerated package;  The difference between the accelerated package and the normal package is that the accelerated version was introduced as a fast template so that customers could implement the solution in a short time without much customization.

1.      Release Date: 7 Oct 2008 / End of Maintenance: 17 Oct 2013 (Extended 17 Oct 2016)

2.     Modules available:

                i.      OrgChart

               ii.      OrgModeler

               iii.      HCMD

               iv.      SuccessionPlanning (TMS)

3.     Packages:

                i.      STVN 1.1 Standard .NET

               ii.      STVN 1.1 Accelerated .NET

4.     Screenshot

1.        Nakisa Logo

2.        Company Logo

3.        Navigation Panel

4.        Styles

5.        Details panel

6.        Toolbar

7.        Logged in user

5.     Main new features for user:

                       i.      Details Panel (Talent, Position, Org)

                      ii.      Actionable org chart (explained later)

6.       Platform : .NET

SAP TVN 2.0

A big step change in the user interface occurred from version 2.0.  The end user now had actionable charts and more details available “out of the box”.

Actionable org chart means that end users have the opportunity to do actions on the desired box using a menu attached to each org chart box. The menu opens with a right click on the box.

The AppResources XML file was still very big because it includes everything within it; I remember it was a min of 4500 line of code. Therefore it was not that easy to search and edit the file.  On the other hand it was only one file where you configure 80% of the application … if not more.

1.      Release Date: 19 Dec 2008 / End of Maintenance: 31 Dec 2013 (Extended 31 Dec 2016)

2.     Modules available

                 i.      OrgChart

                 ii.      OrgModeler

                 iii.      HCMD

                 iv.      SuccessionPlanning (TMS, Manager)

                 v.      JobArchitecture

3.     Packages:

                   i.      STVN 2.0.NET

4.      Screenshots

5.     Main new features for user

                        i.      New UI based on Web 2.0 (explained later)

                       ii.      Actionable org charts with right click menu options 

                      iii.      Profile Pages (Talent, position, org)

                      iv.      Bulk Profile Print

6.      Platform: .NET

7.     Service Packs

             i.      SP1 – July 2009 – Bug fixes and PowerPoint 2007 support

             ii.      SP2 – Dec 2009 – Bug fixes

             iii.      SP3 – Oct 2010 – Bug fixes

SAP TVN 2.1

This version was the start of introducing the Java platform into the product, but the .NET version was retained.   The Java version facilitated the deployment of SAP TVN applications on top of NetWeaver CE.

Users benefited from even greater “out of the box” features including multiple views, increased details and Flash based analytics.  The use of Flash here was a hint at what was coming next in 3.0.

The AppResources XML file structure is nearly the same as 2.0.

1.      Release Date: 22 Jan 2010 / End of Maintenance: 31 Dec 2014

2.     Modules available

                 i.      OrgChart

                ii.      OrgModeler

               iii.      HCMD

               iv.      SuccessionPlanning (TMS, Manager)

               v.      JobArchitecture

3.     Packages:

            i.      STVN 2.1 Standard .NET

           ii.      STVN 2.1 Legacy System Model .NET

           iii.      STVN 2.1 Standard Java

           iv.      STVN 2.1 Legacy System Model Java

4.      Screenshot:

5.     Main new features for user

                i.      Improved in box (right click) menu

               ii.      Improved view menu

               iii.      Profile match re-introduced to SAP TVN

               iv.      Re-designed Flash Grids1 (in SAP TVN)

6.     Main technical changes

              i.      Available on SAP (NW CE) platform

              ii.      Requirement to install ABAP Add On and Transport

7.      Platform: .NET, Java (NW CE)

8.     Service Packs:

     i.      SP1 – March 2010: this was introduced as an enhancement and bug fixing.

SAP TVN and SAP OVN 3.0

In this version there was a really big enhancement on the user interface with the introduction of the Flash interface for the charts.  Not only that, but the Flash component is also used for print previewing which eliminated most of the drawbacks of the HTML component. As a matter of fact we all know the drawback of plain HTML because of security reasons. In addition HTML is browser dependant. That is why I strongly agree with that decision. In a matter of fact that really eliminated most of the browser settings end-users had to do.

Technically, the most important changes are the file structure and functionality available within the Admin Console.  Instead of one big “AppResources.xml” file, we see folders and smaller files which are easier to search and maintain.

I think I also benefited from this decision as from my point of view I can easily debug the error and locate the file easily without the need to search in 4500+ lines of code.

In addition, the software introduces more of Web 2.0 concepts, such as:

1.       Rich Internet application (RIA) — Using Flash to improve usability of navigation of the charts and displaying graphics for analytics

2.       Service-oriented architecture (SOA) — Use of web services such as LinkedIn (and I think more will come … Twitter, etc)

3.       Social Web — Introduction of SocialLink function into OrgChart

One last thing to mention is the .NET version is no longer there. SAP kept only the java version which is compatible with SAP NetWeaver.

A brief overview of 3.0 can be found here:

SAP OVN: http://www.youtube.com/user/Nakisainc#p/u/3/Dw3gEC8vQ1I

SAP TVN: http://www.youtube.com/user/Nakisainc#p/u/4/QP775l2RrBA

I also added a link to a free and short video about each package. But the Nakisa channel on Youtube is full of useful videos

1.      Release Date: 29 Sept 2010 / End of Maintenance: 30 Sept 2013

2.     Modules available

            i.      TVN TalentDashboard

           ii.      TVN SuccessionPlanning(TMS, Manager)

          iii.      TVN TalentFramework (previously known now as JobArchitecture)

          iv.      TVN CareerPlanning

           v.      OVN OrgModeler

          vi.      OVN OrgChart (incorporating SocialLink, ChartBook & Directory)

         vii.      OVN OrgManager

        viii.      OVN DataQualityConsole

3.     Packages:

                        i.      STVN 3.0 Standard Java

                        ii.      SOVN 3.0 Standard Java

                       iii.      STVN 3.0 Legacy System Model Java

                       iv.      SOVN 3.0 Legacy System Model Java

4.     Screenshot :

5.     Main new features for user:

                  i.      Flash interface

                 ii.      User friendly interface (e.g.  the arrows at top corner, the animated change of styles, views,..etc)

                iii.      Introduction of Process Guided Wizards (in Succession planning)

                iv.      Improved Profile Match

                v.      Printing using flash component

               vi.      Social collaboration (SocialLink included within OrgChart)

              vii.      Data integrity validation

             viii.      Position management (using OrgManager)

              ix.      Career planning for employees (using CareerPlanning)

              x.      Business process enablers

             xi.      Directory (included within OrgChart)

6.     Main technical changes

              i.      Division of the AppResources.xml file into small files and folders

             ii.      More functionality added in the Admin Console

                           1.      Data center – including Custom RFC creation

                           2.      Add-on Packages

                           3.      Enhanced details designer

7.      Platform : Java (NW CE)

SAP TVN and SAP OVN 3.0 SP1

I thought of having the Service Pack 1 as separate section because of how the file architecture has changed. Not only that, but also because new concepts where introduced (e.g. View Templates).

Service Pack 1 continued on breaking the configuration files into smaller pieces, for example the SettingResources XML file now became a folder with multiple files within it.

From a technical point of view, I see a great improvement especially in the Data Center area. In this area developers can create new org charts in just 10 minutes or less. I like these types of enhancements which give the developer a break from editing the XML files.  View Templates were introduced, which in my opinion will enhance the way we customize Views in OrgChart.

For the end user, there are significant performance improvements in the “live” approach as a large amount of work has gone into reducing the number of RFC calls to the SAP backend.

Most details are the same as for the 3.0 release except:

1.     Release Date: As 3.0

2.     Modules Available: As 3.0

3.    Packages: As 3.0

4.    Screenshots:

5.     Main new features for user:

        i.      Export to Image, PDF and PPT now use Flash component

       ii.      Create new organization chart from Admin Console without writing any XML file

      iii.      Introduction of Council filter and Assistant filter

      iv.      ChartBook component re-engineered

6.     Main technical changes:

   i.      Enhancements in the Admin Console

                     1.      Data Center

                     2.      Caption Editor

                     3.      Create org charts using wizards

    ii.      Templates for Views

    iii.     Active Directory (integrated) support

7.      Platform : Java (NW CE)

SAP TVN and SAP OVN 3.0 SP2

Again I’ve made 3.0 Service Pack 2 a separate section because this was a major enhancement for TVN/OVN 3.0.  I personally advise most of our customers to implement this version as it is more stable and has some useful new features included.

From my point of view this release is a cutting edge to the Admin Console.  In addition, I saw great enhancements in performance.

1.     Release Date: As 3.0

2.      Modules Available: As 3.0

3.     Packages: As 3.0

4.     Screenshots:

Change of the boxes of SP2

Flash export to PDF

New admin console

5.      Main new features for user:

        i.      Dynamic Org Chart Rooting – set default org chart root based on role or area of responsibility

       ii.      Build Custom Chart & Listings – create an org chart or a listing from custom RFCs

       iii.      Embed External Data Source – set up live link to external data source

       iv.      Colorized Views – quickly identify key objects by color coded boxes ex. Managers, Contractors etc.

        v.      ChartBook, Printing & Exporting Templates – create pre-defined templates to share with your entire user base.

       vi.      DQC: Audit Rules – Scope Expansion

                         1.      53 rules now available in standard package

                         2.      Scope expanded to Org Management, Personnel Administration, Compensation Management and market specific reporting (ex. JSOX)

      vii.      Data Quality Score Engine

                   1.      “Scoring” is a measurable value based on a customizable formula so users can reflect their specific data quality compliance

                   2.      Scoring by Group – Create and visualize scoring by org unit, company / division, custom group or your entire organization

    viii.      DQ Chart – Entity Hierarch

                   1.  New DQ Chart hierarchy that reflects grouping based on area of responsibility that is different from the standard org reporting structure.

                   2. Entity Attributes: View, Detailed Quality & Error Reporting, Score Calculation, Error Listing and Breakdown

6.     Main technical changes:

         i.      Easier to customize using the new features of Admin Console.

        ii.      Faster extraction techniques.

        iii.      Creation of new top level detail using Admin Console

        iv.      Easy linking hierarchy to their details using just the Admin Console.

        v.      XHTML section which allows inserting custom HTML sections.

        vi.      Business card customization from Admin Console.

7.    Platform : Java (NW CE 7.x )

As of now, 3.0 SP2 is the current version of SAP TVN and SAP OVN. However, I think the software is developing rapidly and Nakisa in Montreal are working day and night to satisfy customer requirements and improve the product further. 

In my opinion, implementers and end-users benefited a lot when the software becomes more customizable and user friendly. I also see that this tool can be used in many ways it all depends on the creativity and the wellness of the implementer & provider to make every Customer and end-user happy.

At the end “sky has no limits” and new Ideas will never end.

 


1The Flash grid is a very usefull tool where Talent specialists can easily see competency and readiness of each talent.

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