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Sapphire has come and gone like a half dozen White Castles at 2 in the morning – seemed like a good idea at the time but the taste is still lingering one week later.

Heading into Sapphire, we jumped on the chance to demo an application that represented the best of SAP, and then we decided to add a truly end to end scenario.  SAP Integrated Business Planning, in the Cloud, Powered by HANA – two beautiful user interfaces, HTML-5 and MS Excel.  That was the easy part.  But the story was missing a key user interface – the chemical sales rep or account exec.  Here is the story that was demo’d:

The General Manager, operating in a web-interface only, reviews his/her performance metrics, including key safety statistics.  He/she notices that the sales forecast for one of the businesses missed the Q1 targets and is falling short again for Q2.  The General Manager drops a note to the Sales Manager, directly in the application, leveraging SAP JAM.  The Sales Manager receives notification of an open case from the General Manager and is prompted to investigate.  In the same web-application, the Sales Manager slices and dices the data at a granular level to determine the culprit – one of the sales rep’s is underperforrming and missed some new opportunities.  The Sales Manager then sends the sales rep a task thru the open case to remediate the situation.

At this stage, the sales rep, operating in SAP Cloud for Customer, reviews all the samples that have been submitted to various customers to determine if any opportunities can be expedited.  While visiting the customer, the sales rep reviews past sales and forecasted sales, and then asks for the status of sample XYZ that was sent 3 months ago.  The customer responds that the trials performed well and order will commence shortly.  The key point here is that the sales rep operates in a UI that is designed for him/her.  The sales manager and the general manager operate in a web-front end.

The story concludes with the supply/demand planner – after changes are made, the feasibility of the plan must be reviewed.  Do I have available capacity, what will be the impact on my inventory targets, will I have to outsource the production, what will the costs of that outsource decision be?  The beauty of simulations and scenario planning by leveraging MS Excel with our EPM client that links to the back-end data, in the cloud, powered by HANA, with real time feedback.

And now, the real work begins – let’s prove out how valuable this scenario will be.  Looking forward to more innovation and use cases!

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