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I have been working in the SaaS space at SAP for over 2 years now having started with SAP Business ByDesign and now focusing on SAP Customer OnDemand (Sales OnDemand, Social OnDemand, Service OnDemand and Marketing OnDemand) and it is fantastic to see that our ecosystem understands that to be successful in Cloud we need to spend as much time focusing on the service as the solution.

To better understand why customers are signing up for SAP Cloud solutions I thought I would do something fairly unique, I asked them 😉

Quite consistently they responded with 4 key points that were common across the SAP Cloud themes of People, Customers, Money & Suppliers namely:

  1. Speed
    • The fact that customers could start their project a couple of days after being signed up was extremely appealing.
    • Fixed price and fixed scope implementations (where possible) by the SAP services team or even partners meant that majority of the customer projects went live in the range of 1 month – 3 months typically. In some cases shorter with Sales OnDemand but fairly consistent across the portfolio.
    • SO WHAT: The Business can set the pace
  2. Comprehensive Service
    • The end to end service is fully provided by SAP including the data centres, equipment, staff, UPGRADES, support (yes, with a telephone hotline for emergencies), maintenance, backup, disaster & recovery, discussion forums for sharing ideas with other users and much, much more.
    • SAP currently has two primary data centres one in the US and the other in Germany. SAP offers the customers a choice of data centre location with most (if not all) European customers choosing to make use of the German data centre. All data then remains within the chosen jurisdiction including backups and DR sites which is very important for some customers.
    • Monitor incidents raised in the SAP Cloud Solutions from within SAP Solution Manager. (Limited number of solutions currently)
    • SAP Also offers an Enterprise Edition with enhanced support and tenant offerings.
    • SO WHAT: Choice of two primary data centre locations fully owned and managed by SAP
  3. Easy to use
    • When ever we demonstrate these solutions to customers there is a little smile on their faces (especially if they have SAP system experience) in acknowledgement of now having an easy to use solution from SAP.
    • Simple things like plotting accounts onto a map, connecting a mobile device with an app downloaded from iTunes (other stores available), Microsoft Outlook and excel integration.
    • SO WHAT: Higher user adoption and better business ownership of solution leading to more successful projects
  4. Integration & Extensibility
    • The SAP Cloud is all about openness, API’s are provided for integration and, as always with SAP, integration content is also provided for deployment into a local SAP NetWeaver PI instance for SAP Cloud and SAP OnPremise integration.
    • SAP Now also offers a Cloud Integration solution for customers and is also working with iPaaS partners like Dell Boomi, IBM CastIron & Mulesoft.
    • SAP Cloud solutions are extensible with a rich set of key user tools for adding fields, new reports, etc and if that isn’t enough customers can use the SAP Cloud Studio to extend the solution.
    • Reporting capabilities for structured, ad-hoc, slicing and dicing information is delivered within the SAP Cloud solution as well as full end to end business reporting can be done by connecting SAP BW OnPremise to the SAP Cloud Solution if desired.
    • The SAP Store also offers pre-build extensions for a variety of solutions
    • SO WHAT: Integrate with your existing SAP landscape with ease and extend functionality if it suits you.

SO WHAT: Why are customers considering SaaS solutions from SAP – in my experience and based on customer feedback it’s the “SaaS” effect – Software and Service

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3 Comments

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  1. Vijay Vidiyala

    Roland,

    Thank you very much for putting all your experience together. It is very well articulated what is happening with customers.

    At the end, the most important thing is adding value to the business in the most efficient way. It is very important emphasise that customers are getting empowered with cloud solutions. Customers are able to do new things which they could never do before in on-premise worlds. (Example: New Partnerships, Divestments and Acquistions Integrations has become lot easier than before…) Customers are loving this business flexibility which is enabling them to change their business models…

    (0) 

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