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If there was ever a worker that needed to connect the dots, it’s a sales person.

Sales professionals – on top of the stress of knowing that their productivity has a direct impact on their company’s top line – have to juggle the expectations of their customers and prospects  while communicating and coordinating with a multitude of colleagues on other teams like product management, marketing, finance, and customer service, just to name a few.

/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/dots_324841.pngThe information and documents that they interact with – product spec sheets, presentations, quotes, contracts, and much more – add to the complexity. Keeping all of it in order without going crazy is a challenge in and of itself. And that’s just before a deal closes – once it’s done, a slew of new processes kick off, often including external partners, consultants, and vendors.

CRM systems were supposed to come to the rescue – and to a large degree, they have. But outside of their CRM systems, sales people still routinely have an ample stock of uncorralled documents, communications, and exceptions that contribute to their stress – often driven by the fact that not everyone in their organization has access to or familiarity with their CRM system.

What’s needed is a way to connect the dots – people, documents, data, applications, and processes – so that everyone can stay on the same page, make rapid, informed decisions, and act on them to deliver results.


Work Patterns

With this in mind, we’re introducing work patterns in SAP Jam: They’re pre-built collaborative processes that combine expertise, content, and best practices with real-time business data and applications. Work patterns are designed to help you:

  • Obtain a complete picture of the situation or project
  • Get access to experts who can help you get things done
  • Create a fast, repeatable approach for your work, so you can quickly drive it to completion
  • Be flexible so you can change processes to meet the needs of your work

We’ve selected the first set of work patterns to support collaborative sales and service processes with SAP CRM. They bring together SAP Jam with SAP CRM data and objects to support the things sales people most frequently need to do.

  • Account management
    View and manage all details related to a particular customer account
  • Opportunity management
    Manage all sales opportunities related to a customer account
  • Deal rooms
    Manage tasks, discussions, and processes related to a single sales opportunity
  • Customer engagement
    Communicate and share documents with the customer before an opportunity closes

 

Account management

National rivera Account Group overview-v3.png

It’s often important to view all information available for a customer account – particularly if it’s a large organization and has more than one opportunity in progress. With the account management work pattern, you’ll be able to see not only a list of all sales opportunities but also a list of all open service requests from the customer – so you can help fend off problems as they arise and increase the chance of your deal succeeding. Data is pulled directly from SAP CRM, and you can sort requests to see which ones are the latest, are overdue, or have high priority.

You’ll also have a place to store official documents and reference materials related to the account – and a place to store user-contributed information about the company, like videos and documents. In addition, the home page of the template automatically shares important overview information about the group to help keep you up to date, including:

  • The latest comments in a discussion
  • Details about the company
  • Key members of the group
  • New tasks that have been assigned

Opportunity management

national rivera account group, opportunity tab-v8-nobubble-1024.png

The opportunity management work pattern is perfect for keeping tabs on the details of all sales opportunities you have with a particular customer. You’ll see a list of:

  • Newest opportunities
  • Opportunities with the highest value
  • Opportunities closing within 30 days
  • Opportunities with a high chance of success

The data is pulled live from SAP CRM so you can be sure it’s always up to date. Plus, you’ll be able to see a “quick view” card for each opportunity that dynamically shows detail about each opportunity in real time. If you want to collaborate further on a specific opportunity, you can create a deal room directly from the quick-view card.

Deal rooms

opportunity deal room with poll.png


Before a deal closes, sales people often have to consult with other colleagues – to discuss the sales strategy, work on a presentation, or engage with experts across the company to answer specific questions about product or contract issues.

Using the deal room work pattern, sales people can engage with not only their own team but also other colleagues who wouldn’t typically have access to SAP CRM – like experts in finance, legal, or product management. The deal room allows people from outside sales to take part in the conversation directly, without resorting to side conversations via email, which can be difficult to share and capture.

To encourage best practices and help drive closure, the deal room automatically includes widgets for:

  • Customer-related documents
  • Presentation materials
  • Key team members
  • A strategy discussion

To make sure that everyone has the very latest information about the status of the opportunity, the deal room also includes live opportunity data from pulled directly from SAP CRM. For instance, if the lead account executive determines that the likelihood of closing the deal has increased from 20% to 60% – and updates the “chance of success” figure in SAP CRM – that new figure will be shown in SAP Jam automatically.

Customer engagement


While an opportunity is in progress, it’s important to keep the customer up to date. Instead of sharing documents, forms, quotes, and other materials by email – and never being sure what version they have – invite your customer to connect within SAP Jam. Right in front of you, you’ll have all the latest documents that you’ve provided to the customer and any they’ve provided you in return. You’ll have a single place that you can easily check for updates – rather than herding multiple emails and documents into folders.

This template is designed to exclude details from SAP CRM that only you and your sales team should see, so you can feel secure that customers won’t be able to view any sensitive information.

And if your sales team is reorganized and you move off the account before the deal closes, you can easily share the status, documents, and conversation with the new sales rep who’s taking the account over from you.

Repeatable, flexible, and efficient

Work patterns are designed to be a fast, repeatable approach for you to kick off work, manage it, and drive it to completion – taking advantage of best practices and prior experience. Not every business activity is brand new, so why start from scratch?

But we’ve also made sure that the experience is easy to customize, since not all projects are identical. You have the flexibility to adapt the process to suit your specific needs.

With these work patterns for sales teams, we’ve created a way for you to bring everything together so that you get the full picture – and you’re ultimately able to resolve your big challenges more efficiently, more thoroughly, and with more transparency.

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9 Comments

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  1. Richard Hirsch

    Interesting idea.

    I have a few questions:

    1. How can a customer purchase these work patterns? Will they be included in a marketplace?
    2. Can partners create such patterns as well?
    3. These patterns remind me a bit of the functionality provided by portals. Do you see a possible conflict here?
    4. What sort of mobile support is expected for such patterns?

    Thanks.

    Dick

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    1. Holly Simmons

      SAP Jam customers who purchased it to work with SAP CRM for sales, service, and marketing social business processes get the work patterns automatically (the enterprise edition).  They just need to configure them to work with SAP CRM.

      Work patterns will be sold via the SAP Store. 

      Regarding partners building work patterns, we’re getting the documentation and program in place to make that happen. 

      Work patterns are intended to be complementary to portals.  Portals provide an entry point into applications, but they aren’t where people are working in a business process.  Portals are also highly governed (for good reason) and are not setup to support the ad hoc work that people are doing every day.  As an example of how these can work together, SAP NetWeaver Portal can expose content from SAP Jam’s work patterns so that participants can track progress via a real-time snapshot.  Those same participants can also access SAP Jam directly from that snapshot if there is a need to actively participate.

      Work patterns are supported via the mobile app for SAP Jam.

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      1. Johannes Bacher

        Hello Holly, could you please explain in more details how the work patterns can be “purchased”. You say that SAP Jam customers (with enterprise edition) get the work patterns automatically – but in the next line you write “Work patterns will be sold via the SAP store”.

        We are using SAP Jam (enterprise edition) and so far I have not noticed any work patterns – but maybe I did not find them.

        Please exlülian in more detail. Thank you,

        Johannes

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        1. Holly Simmons

          Johannes,

          The work patterns are included with the enterprise edition of SAP Jam.  Regarding the SAP Store, I was responding to Dick’s question about inclusion in marketplaces.  Part of the plans are to enable partners and developers to create their own work patterns and to sell them via the SAP Store. However, SAP will develop core work patterns for several lines of business and those will be included in SAP Jam.

          Regarding not seeing the work patterns, you need to configure SAP Jam for use with SAP CRM first.  If you need assistance with that, i would suggest sending me a note directly and/or file a customer service request. 

          Best,

          Holly

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  2. Nicolas Busson

    Hi,

    I’m sorry but what sap jam can do that sap crm cannot is not really crystal clear… for  example don’t you need a user to login to sap jam? (Because if you do your argument that people from finance wouldn’t have access to crm doesn’t make really sense for me).

    I think it would be interesting to list some functionalities that you will have out of the box with jam, that we don’t have in crm to better understand the value added of the product. Because of you need 25 interfaces with crm to bring all the data you need (opportunities, service requests,  etc. ) to have access to a functionality (creation of groups for example) that will take approx. 5 days to develop from scratch in crm,  ROI might not be obvious. What do you think?

    Cheers

    Nicolas.

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    1. Holly Simmons

      Nicolas,

      SAP CRM and SAP Jam are complementary and neither replaces the other.  The overall goal is to bring social and collaborative capabilities to sales, service, and marketing processes to reduce sales cycles, speed time to resolution for service tickets/calls, improve campaign planning, etc. 

      SAP Jam can work with SAP CRM and SAP Cloud for Customer to support these collaborative processes in a number  of ways.  The intent is to support employees where they are working – in SAP Jam, SAP CRM, SAP Cloud for Customer, mobile device, etc. – versus requiring them to always go elsewhere to collaborate.

      In prior releases, SAP Jam has supported bringing collaboration directly into SAP CRM and SAP Cloud for Customer.

      With work patterns and the new release, you can bring SAP CRM data directly into SAP Jam for the purposes of collaboration.  Work patterns are pre-built so that you just select the work pattern from a list and begin working.  Invite people, add applicable content, etc.  The data is brought in for the purposes of collaborating around it – a customer account, an opportunity, a service request, etc.  SAP Jam is not replacing our CRM solutions, but instead enhancing it with collaboration.

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      1. Nicolas Busson

        Dear Holly,

        Maybe that’s just the example chosen in this blogpost that doesn’t really unveil the full potential of SAP Jam integration with CRM. Let me put it another way:

        The intent is to support employees where they are working.

        Does that mean  SAP CRM customers that do not know/use SAP Jam already, are not the first one you would try to convince using SAP Jam?

        SAP Jam is not replacing our CRM solutions, but instead enhancing it with collaboration.                   

        That’s my point: if SAP Jam is “only” bringing collaboration to SAP CRM, I’m wondering why you didn’t improve the collaboration tool we have in CRM already instead of creating another piece of software on top of CRM…

        🙂

        But that’s just the point of view of a SAP CRM consultant that didn’t know anything about SAP Jam until yesterday, and is eager to learn more about it!

        Regards,

        Nicolas.

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        1. Holly Simmons

          Nicolas,

          Work patterns are an overall approach that is not specific to SAP CRM, however this current release includes work patterns for SAP CRM for sales.  We also have work patterns for learning, mentoring, support communities, etc.  As we go into 2014, you will see additional work patterns for other departments (and apps).  In other words, this is about delivering a social foundation that works across all processes and business apps versus collaboration in a single, isolated application.  Additionally, sales people need to collaborate with others who are not SAP CRM users to do activities like developing sales strategies, working through requirements, developing proposals with partners, etc. 

          Another way to think about this is from a sales person’s point of view.  The sales person participates in many different types of activities – onboarding, enablement, learning, mentoring, yearly goal setting and performance reviews, approving expense reports, budgeting or forecasting, etc.   They should be able to collaborate and do their work in a single social solution across all of these activities and the applications that support them, not jump to a separate set of social capabilities in each solution.  This provides the best experience for the business person to have that broad view and ensures aggregation of all of the things important to that user.

          Hope that provides more background.  Let me know if you’d like to chat further by phone or otherwise.

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