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Having a skilled workforce is essential to remain successful in times of fundamental change, but only very few companies are prepared to join the innovation revolution (see also my previous blog). These companies enable their employees to build the right skills and knowledge and thus have gained a strategic advantage.

If your organization belongs to the 90% of companies that don’t have all the IT skills they need (IBM report, 2012), you have a challenge to face. Here are five ways how SAP Enterprise Support customers can strengthen the IT skills of their staff in a timely and cost effective manner with the help of the SAP Enterprise Support Academy program:

#1 Learn from others

No matter what IT-related challenge you’re facing, most probably others have had the same issue before and found a way to solve it. In many cases it was SAP Active Global Support who was involved in the solution. SAP Active Global Support (SAP AGS) is SAP’s support organization, serving 253,000 customers in more than 130 countries. The collective knowledge of SAP AGS, based on myriads of customer projects and service deliveries, is available to you via SAP Enterprise Support Academy, an offer that for others would seem to be an unfair advantage, as it helps you to stay ahead of the competition.

A great new example how you can benefit from previous customer projects is the deployment best practice for SAP HANA.  This format provides a comprehensive suite of knowledge articles, guided procedures, and further expert guidance, helping you to plan your SAP HANA based solution, integrate it into your existing solution, and operate the solution efficiently. Learn more about this offering in this blog or go to http://support.sap.com/dbp4hana.

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SAP Enterprise Support Academy also offers additional options for direct, peer-to-peer knowledge exchange:

  • In our customer panels, customers talk about their experiences with SAP support, sharing support-related best practices, solutions and ideas.
  • SAP Jam, as part of our SAP Enterprise Support value maps format, facilitates social collaboration and knowledge transfer in learner rooms.

#2 Give your people what they want

The more your people are able to master learning and knowledge transfer, the better off you will be as an organization. This is becoming even more important as the workforce is becoming more diverse than ever. (Tech-savvy millenials are expected to make up 75% of the workforce by 2030). Are you ready to give your multi-generational workforce the tools and flexibility they need and request?

With the SAP Enterprise Support Academy program, users are empowered to pinpoint for themselves the content and services they need, and they can consume it when they like. Users can ramp up on new technology or access guidance to get a particular job done in the here and now. They can choose the learning format that fits their skill level, as well as their preferred interaction model, based on their unique learning style. All in all, the users can choose the learning technology that suits them best.

Here are two new features that emphasize this flexibility:

  • Now, with context-sensitive links from work centers in SAP Solution Manger, you can access relevant content in SAP Enterprise Support Academy, learning “just-in-time,” rather than “just-in-case” (available with SAP Solution Manager 7.1 SP12).
  • With gamification elements, users can experience a new level of engagement, and learn how to use the SAP Enterprise Support Academy (pilot project).

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#3 Unwire learning

It should come as no surprise to you that mobile device usage has penetrated nearly every corner of the globe, certainly your organization as well. This ubiquitous technology has the potential to greatly expand learning opportunities: Mobile devices are always on, close at hand, and connected, meaning employees are ready and able to access relevant information at any time

The SAP Enterprise Support Academy mobile app complements the learning styles of today, providing you online, 24×7 access to the SAP Enterprise Support Academy’s catalog, with hundreds of learning assets and services in an array of various formats.

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Built for the next generation of corporate learning and learners, knowledge starts at the end of your fingertips – literally. With this app, your employees can learn at a comfortable speed, anytime and anywhere. The SAP Enterprise Support Academy mobile app is available on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.

#4 Spend your resources wisely

Most leaders are very much familiar with the external factors that impact their organizations most: technology and skills. To address these imperatives in an efficient manner, new approaches like the SAP Enterprise Support value maps are crucial.

SAP Enterprise Support value maps give precise guidance on how to best make use of the extensive SAP Enterprise Support offerings to solve your business challenges. Every value map provides you with guided information about what it takes in terms of time, resources, and skills to get started, and helps you make educated decisions where to invest and reach out to, for the most impact. You can expect increased efficiency, risk reduction, and an improved level of effectiveness.

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Think of the SAP Enterprise Support value maps as a type of navigation system that guides you through what SAP Enterprise Support has to offer. First, you identify your business challenge or the specific topic for which you need to build up your know-how. Whether your concern is data volume management, security, mobile solutions, or SAP HANA, a value map is there to help you meet your business challenge. Next, you need only to navigate through the value map offerings in the SAP Jam social software platform, to find and consume services, expert sessions, best-practice documents and more.

#5 Be a pacesetter

Research by IBM (2012 report) shows that there is a competitive advantage in early adoption of emerging technologies. Companies that choose this direction are pacesetters, strategically incorporating these new technologies, while others follow suit for the further success of their organizations. These pacesetters consequently are more proactive in developing skills than their peers. By extending the skills mission beyond IT, designing diverse teams, and using social tools, pacesetters address the skills gap and can deliver stronger solutions.

Among the top skills development objectives of pacesetters is cloud computing: more than 70% of these organizations reported to build up cloud computing skills.

Entering SAP ONE Support.

The SAP ONE Support program helps you become a pacesetter too. It simplifies your way to the cloud by providing guidance, best practices, and expert engineering competence. The program delivers harmonized, standardized, and integrated support services to organizations of all sizes, across all solutions, to IT and line-of-business users, and across every deployment scenario. The goal of the ONE Support program is to enable customers to quickly and easily leverage their existing on-premise investments, to move to the cloud at their own pace, and to drive value in hybrid environments.

For more information on SAP ONE Support, visit www.sap.com/services-and-support/support/index.epx or www.sapsupport.info.

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Visit SAP Enterprise Support Academy at support.sap.com/esacademy

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  1. Peter Monaghan

    Exciting times. I am in love with the direction SAP is taking by integrating Enterprise Support into Solution Manager. I am working hard pushing my SAP Support teams back into Solution Manager. If SAP can one day make Solution Manager the main interface for all SAP Support, be it internal to the company or SAP’s Global Support, SCN, MarketPlace, etc., we would all be better for it.

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