According to expert definitions, user experience is not just about behavior or attitude. It’s also about a person’s emotional reaction to using a particular product, system or service. We all know how important emotions are in making decisions! Apple, for example, has taught us that selling features is not as effective as selling an experience. While other MP3 players sold storage capacity, Apple empowered people to put a thousand songs in their pocket. This is exactly what motivates me most in my new role at SAP, because mobile is all about the experience.
SAP’s vision is to be the market leader in Enterprise Mobility Solutions and enable the best user experience for SAP Cloud Services. This means we will deliver excellent user experiences across all mobile paradigms within the enterprise including the development of applications, the security of devices, data, content and applications, and providing the best platform for mobilizing applications. There is a specific user experience associated with each of these areas, and here is where we aim to excel; Mobile First is the guiding principle behind all our solutions and applications running on premise or in the cloud and powered by SAP HANA.
Let’s start with the foundation. With SAP Mobile Platform (SMP 3.0) you can mobilize your business by quickly building, deploying and securely managing apps for employees, customers and partners. Sysco Foods, North America’s leading food distributor with over 400,000 customers, wanted to improve customer loyalty by simplifying the inventory and ordering processes for their clients. The development experience was simple and easy. Working with SAP’s Mobile Design Center (MDC) and using design thinking principles, the team custom built an app on SAP Mobile Platform for iOS and Android systems. The result, Sysco Counts, is user-friendly, intuitive, and provides two functionalities in one. Sysco’s customers now use the app’s mobile ordering and inventory capabilities replacing phone calls and pen & paper processes. The app is free for all Sysco customers and demonstrates Sysco’s commitment and investment to help their customers grow business and reduce costs.
Now, let’s consider security. This is top of mind for every enterprise, regardless of size, industry, location or phase of their mobilization journey. From the user perspective, you know you are having a delightful experience if you’re not even aware of activities being used to secure your mobile device and your data. From the IT perspective, the experience is about simplifying device lifecycle management and managing large-scale deployments of mobile devices. SAP’s Mobile Secure Portfolio provides a low-cost platform for app delivery with analytic capabilities, mobile app wrapping and content management for secure document access. It’s the leading mobile device management solution in the industry as positioned in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for MDM software.
Secure mobile device management is critical to customers, but it’s also complex, so making the experience as painless as possible is important. Both a customer and partner of SAP, Verizon uses SAP Afaria to manage over 50,000 devices internally. Verizon also hosts a managed service to ease the experience for their customers. Hallmark, for example, benefits from Verizon’s hosting capabilities as well as from the managed mobility services with SAP Mobile Secure. HP, the world’s largest technology company with over 1 billion customers worldwide, turned to SAP to unwire its global workforce. SAP Afaria is used to manage and secure over 180,000 HP smartphones and tablets and to deploy business apps to mobile devices, enabling people to do their jobs securely anywhere on the planet.
And finally, the mobile apps themselves are where we experience the strongest emotional bond. Mobile technology has liberated us in ways that were previously unimaginable, enabling us to connect instantly to what matters most and move seamlessly between various spheres in our lives. This fluid transition between thoughts and immediate action is the ultimate user experience. It can be argued that today’s smartphone is the single biggest contributor to personal and business productivity in the past 10 years. I can check a sales figure while simultaneously sending my daughter an instant message to let her know I’ll pick her up later.
Productivity apps on smartphones are at the cutting edge of this movement. SAP offers numerous mobile apps for all industries and LOBs, along with SAP Fiori for creating your own beautiful, powerful apps, or to renew existing ones for a more elegant look and feel. One of my favorite examples is the app developed for the Societé de Transport de Montreal (STM). The app enables a mobile reward and recognition program for its 1.2 million daily passengers and aims to boost ridership by 40%. Not only did the app win the Super Nova award for next generation customer experience, it also became the number one app downloaded in Canada in the iTunes lifestyle category!
IDC has named SAP the market leader in Enterprise Mobility solutions twelve years in a row. Our mobile platform and development tools, our security portfolio and our mobile applications help customers run their businesses with greater insight to drive more productivity while reducing TCO. Enabling the best mobile user experience for SAP Cloud Services will bring these real benefits to unprecedented levels.
In my next blog, I’ll discuss how we are working with partners in all parts of the enterprise mobile ecosystem to co-innovate and jointly address the challenges of simplifying consumption and engagement as all of us move more and more of our business onto the cloud.