A Bunch of Things You Need to Know About Fiori for CRM
If you’re an existing SAP CRM customer you have probably already heard about SAP Fiori. But you might still have some questions like… What the heck is a Fiori anyway? What SAP CRM functionality is available via Fiori? How much does Fiori cost? Does Fiori require SAP HANA?
Keep reading below to find out what SAP Fiori is all about and how you can leverage it within SAP CRM.
Fiori is an HTML5 user interface, not a type of pasta
Fiori is not a type of pasta. Nor is it an Italian flower. Rather, SAP Fiori UX (User Experience) is SAP’s next-generation user interface built using HTML5 / SAP UI5 mobile and OData services. Fiori is optimized to run on mobile devices; However Fiori apps can run on any device including smartphones and tablets, as well as laptops and desktops.
Similar to the “Personas” concept in SAP ECC, Fiori apps are organized by roles. Users access the Fiori apps via tiles on a homepage using the Fiori Launchpad, the central entry hub to all SAP Fiori apps. Within the launchpad are services for navigation, personalization, single sign-on, and search.
All SAP Fiori apps follow a design principle known as 1-1-3 (“one, one, three”). This means each screen should be designed with a single user (or role) in mind, a single task that this user wants to accomplish, and a maximum of three levels of navigation to perform this task. In addition to the over 360 individual Fiori apps provide by SAP, customers can also create their own Fiori-like apps.
HANA is recommended / required
HANA is recommended — and in most case even required — to run Fiori apps. Technically SAP Fiori comes in three types of apps: transactional apps, fact sheets, and analytical apps. Transactional apps run best on SAP HANA, but can be ported to other databases that provide acceptable performance. However both fact sheets and analytical apps can only be run using SAP HANA.
Fiori is free
When SAP first unveiled the Fiori UX at SAPPIRE in 2013, it was announced that customers would be required to pay an additional license fee of 100 Euro per user to leverage the new Fiori user interface. While customers were thrilled excited about the new UI which offered increased usability, customers weren’t necessarily as enthusiastic about the licensing model. After several discussions between SAP and customers it was announced that Fiori is now available free of charge to customers!
Fiori is also available for CRM
When Fiori was unveiled at SAPPHIRE in May 2013, there were only 25 apps available for the entire SAP Business Suite. Today there are over 360 individual Fiori apps available including a dozen or so Fiori apps for CRM! Most of the apps available to date for CRM are focused around the Sales Representative role and include functionality designed around account and contact management, leads and opportunities, and sales pipeline performance.
Notably absent from the sales-related functionality is Order Management, which is not currently available via Fiori for CRM (however Fiori does of course offer Sales Order Management apps for ECC). Similarly, Fiori does not yet provide any Marketing or Service Management apps for CRM. Below is a list of the out-of-the-box Fiori apps currently available for CRM.
- My Accounts
- My Appointments
- My Contacts
- My Leads
- My Notes
- My Opportunities
- My Tasks
- Approve Requests
- Simulate Sales Pipeline
- Track Sales Pipeline
- SAP Smart Business for Sales Performance Management
Fiori runs on CRM 7.0, EHP1, EHP2, and EHP3
Fiori is included standard with CRM 7.0 EHP3 SP03 and later releases. Some Fiori apps can be leveraged in EHP2, EHP1, and even CRM 7.0 by installing the Fiori Add-On package. The following versions are supported:
- SAP CRM 7.0 SPS 06 or higher
- SAP enhancement package 1 for SAP CRM 7.0 SPS03 or higher
- SAP enhancement package 2 for SAP CRM 7.0 SPS01 or higher
However, many of the newest Fiori features and functionality for CRM can only be used with the latest CRM versions. For example, the following features of the My Accounts Fiori app are only availalbe with CRM 7.0 EHP3 SP09:
- Account types: The app shows individual accounts and account groups in addition to corporate accounts.
- Display own accounts: You can determine which accounts are identified as the user’s accounts (for display in the My Accounts view). You determine this on the basis of relationship categories for the relationship between an employee and an account. You can determine user’s accounts also based on own definitions.
- Fstrict the result list based on own definitions (for example take out blocked accounts).
- Create and edit accounts
- Display quotations from SAP ERP
- Display sales orders from SAP ERP
- Display and create marketing attributes
Fiori can be used for “mobile sales”
Fiori apps are built using the SAP UI5 framework on the front end, which calls backend functionality that is exposed using SAP NetWeaver Gateway services. Unlike the standard CRM WebClient user interface (which can be run on mobile devices like iPad with some tweaking) Fiori apps are optimized for mobile devices and dynamically resize to fit the display of the device being used.
This means that Fiori could be used in lieu of CRM Mobile Sales – at least for basic SFA functionality like account management, appointment management, lead/opportunity management, and pipeline analysis. And unlike other mobility solutions for SAP CRM, Fiori does not require the use of SUP (Sybase Unwired Platform now known as the SAP Mobile Platform).
However, as mentioned in #2 above, Fiori doesn’t currently provide a Sales Order app for CRM (though Fiori does provide a Sales Order app for ECC). So if you wanted to allow sales reps to log orders in CRM using Fiori, you would currently need to create your own apps for e.g., quotation and sales order management.
Fiori can be used offline (currently just for select apps) ** Update Nov 2015
With CRM 7.0 EHP3 SP10, which was released in October 2015, SAP CRM customers can run Fiori in the Cloud connected to their SAP CRM system. Among other things, Fiori Cloud Edition enables Fiori apps to be run in offline mode on smartphones and tablets. Users can create, edit, and view data in offline mode. All data is store locally on the device and synchronized with the CRM backend via SMP or its Cloud edition HCPms.
As a first step, with SAP Fiori 1.0 (wave 10) for SAP CRM 7.0 EHP3 SP10, SAP has enabled two CRM Fiori apps to be run offline: My Accounts and My Contacts. As prerequisites SAP Mobile Platform (or its cloud edition HCPms) and SAP Mobile Secure are both required. For complete details, click here to read Jutta Weber’s blog post, “Using CRM Fiori apps offline”.
Fiori is not WebDynpro, WebClient, Corbu, or SAP Screen Personas
As mentioned above, SAP Fiori User Experience (UX) is a new user interface technology based on HTML5 / SAP UI5 and OData services. Fiori does not rely on the WebDynpro technology which is typically used when building web applications in the SAP environment. Similarly Fiori doesn’t leverage the BSP (Business Server Page) technology used by the CRM WebClient user interface. Rather Fiori is a completely separate new user interface technology.
It’s also important to differentiate between Fiori and Corbu which is essentially just a new “theme” or “skin” that can be applied on top of UI technologies like WebDynpro, WebClient, or SAP GUI to standardize the look and feel (i.e., fonts, UI elements, layouts, etc.) of SAP applications regardless of which technology platform they run on.
And finally, Fiori should not be confused with SAP Screen Personas which are useful for modifying SAP GUI screens such as those in SAP ECC. SAP Screen Personas is a technology that provides a drag and drop approach to modify many common SAP GUI screens to make them more usable and more visually appealing. While this is a great tool for SAP ECC screens that use SAP GUI, SAP Screen Personas is obviously not useful in SAP CRM which uses BSP WebClient screens. Fiori on the other hand, which can be used with CRM, provides somewhat similar benefits in terms of usability and personalization.
You can create your own Fiori apps!
As mentioned above, currently SAP only delivers out-of-the-box Fiori apps for the Sales Rep business role. And while SAP is planning to deliver more Fiori apps for other business roles like the Marketing Professional at some point down the road, some customers and system integrators have already gone ahead and developed their own custom Fiori apps rather than waiting.
For example, Nsight, an SAP certified partner, has built a set of Fiori apps for CRM Service Order Management! While these apps are obviously not standard SAP Fiori apps delivered by SAP, they conform to the Fiori standards and integrate seamlessly with SAP CRM just like regular SAP-delivered Fiori apps.
You’ll notice also that Nsight has added some additional touches of their own such as color-coding and sorting of orders by priority and status (Figure 1). They’ve also added integration to Google Maps for driving directions as well as CTI integration for click-to-call capabilities (Figure 2).
These quite sophisticated Fiori apps from Nsight are just an example of what can potentially be done on a project basis. Your custom Fiori apps can be as basic or elaborate as you like. It’s up to you. All you need to do is create your apps and plug them into the SAP Fiori Launchpad! For a primer on how to get integrate your own custom Fiori apps, check out this article from Craig Haworth, “How to get your SAP UI 5 apps to work like SAP Fiori Apps in the SAP Fiori Launchpad”.
Additional Documentation and Guides
There are many other questions about Fiori that I don’t cover in this introductory blog post about Fiori for CRM. For example, “Can Fiori be used offline?” or “Does Fiori require SMP?”. Those questions are beyond the scope of this post, and they are already answered better elsewhere. Below are a few links to other resources that provide more in-depth information on Fiori in general (while my post here was intended to focus specifically on the use of Fiori for CRM).
- What is SAP Fiori UX? Masayuki Sekihara on SCN
- What’s all the furore about Fiori? Is this the SAP mobile solution you’ve been waiting for? by Darron Walton on Devilliers Walton
- SAP Fiori & SMP by John Wargo on SCN
- SAP Help Portal: SAP Fiori for SAP Business Suite
- 1931218 – General Information: Fiori for CRM
- 1931219 – General Information: CRM Analytical Fiori Apps
- 2033487 – Problem analysis and correction for SAP CRM HANA Live Reporting
- 2016653 – Extending the SAP Fiori apps “My Accounts” and “My Contacts”
- Using CRM Fiori apps offline | SCN by Jutta Weber
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