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Wouldn’t it be great if your job came with a Staples “Easy” button — if all you had to do was press the big red button to get a task done, no matter how complex? This is what we mean by “Run Simple.” Many organizations are moving in this direction, with some help from SAP and our partner ecosystem.

The widespread consumerization of IT has shifted customers’ expectations about enterprise software. They are no longer willing to accept complexity as a cost of doing business. People now ask:

  • Why can’t I gain visibility across my supply chain with one click?
  • Why can’t I launch an HR process by hitting one button?
  • Why can’t my corporate procurement have a similar user experience to Amazon 1-Click ordering?

The contrast between the consumer experience and enterprise software experience is stark. We are working on that.

As an industry, we need to reintroduce ourselves to why we invented enterprise software. Originally, it was to drive efficiencies across business processes. Now, it sometimes seems that these tools create friction in the processes they were designed to streamline.

We need to start reexamining all the places where people engage with software and ask if it’s absolutely necessary to have a human in the process. We should be lightening the load for people, making it easier and more satisfying for them to do their jobs. Better user experience is the pathway forward.

One of our customers, Freescale Semiconductor, is a great example of how this can work. Freescale knew it needed to update, modernize, and simplify its IT systems and processes. It took HR staff more than five minutes of clicking through menus, tabs, pop-ups, and complex tables to find one specific piece of information about an employee. That wasn’t good enough.

So, they redid the interface for HR using SAP Screen Personas. Now they can locate all the information they need in one screen within a few seconds. That frees up the HR staff to work on more strategic issues. Deployed to 170 HR reps, the time savings and efficiency gains are significant. It’s not just an “Easy” button for employees – it eliminates daily frustration from their lives, improving overall job satisfaction.

Everyone should be free to use their creativity and talent to address higher order problems, without the distraction of complex software. This has been a major message from our customers. Instead of our customers hiring people to do pixel pushing, we are allowing them to Run Simple, letting their people work on much more challenging problems. As Freescale has found, the rewards can be huge.

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