Greetings SCN members!  We’ve received many questions on what the next steps are for the SCN platform in the coming months, so I wanted to take some time to outline the high-level roadmap and give you a taste of what’s to come this year.

First off, I acknowledge, as Mark Yolton does with Dennis Howlett in Dennis’s Video Blog and Oliver Kohl explains in his blog, that we’re still experiencing some challenges related to launching the new site –challenges with migration, indexing, a few remaining performance tweaks, etc.  I’m extremely confident that our teams will resolve these issues in the coming days and you will be able to focus on exploring and collaborating with one another here on SCN. 

While launching the new site was a massive undertaking, we’ve effectively only taken the first steps —that being laying the foundation, enhancing the social functionality, improving the tools to contribute, and harmonizing the systems.  It’s this foundational step that will allow us to add further features and functionality that we know the community wants and that we’re looking forward to providing in the future.

So… What about mobile?  What about search?  What about <fill in the blank> functionality?  Allow me to briefly lay out what we have on the roadmap with a quick word of caution: This is the high-level view and is subject to change of course if budgets, capacities, or acts of God change the priorities at SAP.

Coming in Q2, early Q3:

Mobile SCN:

We are all voracious mobile app users and fully appreciate the need to have SCN available for smartphones and tablets.  Due to security and resource bandwidth, we prioritized getting the migration and new full site launched before branching into mobility.  This is our first priority beyond resolving the current platform challenges and here’s what is planned.

  • We’ll roll out an initial mobile app for Smartphones in the next 2 months.  This will offer basic use cases to satisfy immediate needs (taking part in discussions, following and messaging, and commenting on content).
  • The same will be available for iPads as well, while we investigate mobile format for tablets to make better use of the real estate.
  • There’s also some indications that a couple of SAP Mentors are working on hobby projects, to make mobile much more interesting….  Unfortunately I have to leave it at that for now, stay tuned 🙂

Social Sign-On:

We are planning to add the ability to login to SCN through other well known social platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.  This will come with other enhancements to the profile and registration process to make it easier for new members to get started and for existing members to keep their info current.

Next generation Idea Place:

We’re working with an industry leading Ideation vendor to up the ante on how Idea Place encourages, facilitates, and rewards your innovative ideas.

  • We’ll be releasing the new solution in parallel to the existing Idea Place for some very strategic challenges where you will have the ability to make a quick, direct impact to SAP’s ecosystem.
  • The new solution will offer staging/leveling to ensure the best ideas rise to the top and you will be subsequently rewarded through robust game mechanics as well.
  • The rest of Idea Place will transition to the new solution toward the end of the year.

Additional functionality:

We already have a big stack of requirements we couldn’t squeeze into SCN before our launch.  We’re combining that list with what we’ve learned by listening to you in the Pilot and days since go live.  Highlights from the list of over 200 items that we’ll begin implementing in May and continue to process until we’ve completed it:

  • Improving Search usability
  • Moderation features
  • Points fixes and tweaks
  • (drum roll…) Navigation changes

Bugs will continue to be a priority as well and we working to have all, what we’ve termed “critical” bugs, resolved by the end of April.  I encourage you to bookmark Oliver’s Release Notes to stay current.

Coming in Q3 and Q4:

Gamification –We’ll be putting the reputation into turbo mode and offer full fledged gamification across the site

Video —We have a new, robust video application and management system in the works internally to SAP.  We are aiming to bring that to the community as well in Q4 to make sharing and managing videos possible on site, rather than relying on external providers.

So that’s the high level picture.  I empathize with many of you who want this functionality now —believe me, I’ve tried snapping my fingers and clicking my heels.  We’re working hard to stretch our budget as far as possible and to deliver the most bang for the buck.

If you have other ideas about what would make SCN better, please use our session in Idea Place!  It’s going to be a great year in the evolution of SCN and I’m honored to be sharing the excitement with you.

Best Regards, Matt

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  1. Stephen Millard

    Overall I think that sounds great.

    The mobile app sounds really handy as I’m used to accessing social networks on the go.  I did try the Jive iOS app when SCN launched … just in case – but no joy; so mobile is a big thumbs up from me.

    The gamification in combination with the points fixes/tweaks will hopefully go some way to resolving a lot of the point gaming issues that appear to have arisen since the new launch.  I think that will be warmly welcomed by everyone.

  2. Ameya Pimpalgaonkar

    Social Sign-On souds cool. Is Android app planned as well? Gamifications too sounds very interactive. Seems more and more social sites are using gamifications now. 🙂 I wonder what will happen to those who have certain points as one of the appraisal objectives. Haha. 😀

    Great going SDN.


    1. Matt Johnson Post author

      Hi Lukas,  What do you mean by “thread mirroring”?  I assume this is somehow different from following or tracking in your communications stream right?

      1. Lukas Weigelt

        Yep, sorry for sparing with words 😛

        I’m talking about a function that allows for mirroring/copying/linking a thread/discussion you have created in one subforum/space into several other subforums. I often have the problem that I need to retrieve Information on somethings that clashes with lot’s of different topics and the outcome is, that I open a discussion in one forum and three more in three other forums which link to the first, closing the “three more” to prevent cross-posting. Seeing who replies in my “main-thread” then, I can tell, in probably half of the cases, my problem is discussed and solved by people from each subforum, so it does prove useful (and nessecary :-/). I was direly hoping this would be an initial feature on the new SCN, both to reduce my effort and that of the mods who have to clean up after my “Closed-Linking”-“Semi-TermsOfService-conform”-mess 😉

        Cheers, Lukas

        1. Matt Johnson Post author

          Actually, we may already have that use case covered in the current system but have the necessary functionality disabled currently due to the indexing issues.

          Conceptually, when you tag the discussion with the structured metadata properties (social tagging doesn’t work across spaces as far as I understand it), like ABAP, CRM, and Cloud, your content will show up in any space with a widget looking for content with those tags.

          Unfortunately, it will take several more weeks to get the indexing issues resolved and properly load test the various widgets before they reappear, but I do expect their return.  If this ends up not covering what you’re looking for, Idea Place may be your next stop —but let’s see 😉   Cheers

  3. Gretchen Lindquist

    I am excited that social sign-on is coming.That is one of my favorite ways to get started on sites. I think that functionality will go a long way towards growing our community and helping new people get launched quickly. The mobile app will also be a huge step forward, especially with it being device agnostic. Now I just have to wait for mobile GRC to come to Android 🙂

    Thanks for the sneak peek!

  4. Pavan Bhamidipati

    I would be mainly looking forward to see about Mobile SCN and Social Sign on…This new platform has changed the way how the SDN / SCN was in 2008..

    If there could be an option like a badge concept that even in Social networks(At least for FB,Twitter and LINKEDIN) should allow the current SCN status of a member  to say that he is active contributor or a Mentor or Moderator…. on his profile picture or somewhere where visitors eye should be caught as soon as he looks at the profile….


  5. Sandip Agarwalla


    Thanks for the update..

    I think it would be good if SCN can add one more feature when someone browse for the enite Content/Blogs/Discussion..If we can add a features of “Followed Spaces” which will give you all the discussions/blogs/docu of the all the spaces we are following..

    Currently there is a features “Following”, which just gives the items which we are following explicitly…Right now either we go to indivisual Spaces of interest to get the items…

    Filtering of Content/Blogs for all followed spaces would give a great way to find the relevant items which are of interest to us..


    1. Matt Johnson Post author

      HI Sandip,

      I like the suggestion. Please submit that as an idea in Idea Place. As we started the first Sprint last week we’re finally in a position to begin processing the other feedback from the community and prioritizing the ideas along with the remaining bugs and new / outstanding requirements.

      Thanks, Matt

  6. Jeff Wootton

    What happened to plans for improved video support in late 2012?  It’s now 2013 and from what I can tell, there’s no way to post a video on SCN and embed it in a page; I still have to post to youtube and then embed it.


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