Cosmetics and cars from a 3D printer. Smart collars for dairy cows. GPS jackets that help users find their destination using integrated LED lighting and haptic feedback.These are just some of the ways that our world is becoming digitized as never before. It’s hardly surprising that digitization is not only rewriting the rules of competition, but it’s also threatening companies with traditional business models that are not yet ready for competition in the digital age. In short: Digitization is rapidly changing how we do business.

/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/simple_764585.jpgChanging Faster, Creating New Business Models

Merely adopting technology without truly changing the way we work isn’t the right approach. A study written by Capgemini Consulting and the MIT Center for Digital Business revealed that 70 percent of businesses use technology only as a substitute for previous analog processes. In other words, many companies are only digitizing old processes without adapting to the new world. Obviously, this approach hardly makes the best use of technology.

To fully benefit from the disruptive power of the digital (r)evolution, the only adequate answer is continuous and profound innovation – whether it’s in a company’s organizational structure, its processes, or IT systems. One message that SAP repeatedly hears when working with enterprises across the globe is: “We need to accelerate the pace of change and innovation for us and for our clients.” And fast-growing digital innovators such as Uber, Airbnb, and 9Flats are boldly showing how to overcome traditional business models and be a kick starter in a shared economy, with consumers moving from owning products to using services, and reshaping conventional business models completely.

Therefore, SAP’s big mid-term challenge will be to support companies in re-inventing their business models and processes – in the area of information and communication, research and product development, distribution, as well as the shift from products to services.

To bring companies to the forefront of the digital transformation, SAP has simplified its product roadmap by focusing on three key pillars:

  • Open platform
  • Innovative business applications
  • Connected network

One Open Platform to Unify Them All

SAP HANA is the simplifier for everything SAP does: simplified user experience, smaller data footprint, easier data processing and operation, and simpler IT landscape. SAP HANA reduces the enterprise infrastructure required to develop or run business applications, and it supports totally new business processes.

For instance, SAP HANA has helped to change the traditional business model of Austrian hygiene company, Hagleitner, which used to sell paper and cleaning detergents, but now sells expertise and data content. To optimize its resource planning, the company has digitized the restrooms of fast-food restaurants, hospital operating theaters, as well as cruise ship bathrooms, and equipped them with sensors. Hagleitner can now create mathematical models that make it possible to better predict the need for replenishing soap and paper supplies and optimize cleaning-staff assignments.

The SAP HANA Cloud Integration is SAP’s new standard for integration between SAP applications and third-party applications, whether in the cloud or on-premise. Therefore, we will offer integration content to all our applications running on the platform and will also allow partners and customers to publish and monetize their integration content for SAP HANA.

On top of SAP HANA, there’s the SAP HANA Cloud Platform, a high-efficiency platform as a service that’s open to all SAP and non-SAP developers. Since it is pre-integrated, developers can find all the required software to build a solution, including user portals, analytics, data integration, identity management, mobile, collaboration, API management, document management, data management, and much more.

How Customers Benefit Today

Siemens has chosen the SAP HANA Cloud Platform to build the Siemens Cloud for Industry, an open cloud platform for analyzing large datasets in the industry. It’s intended to simplify industrial customers’ ability to get additional value from the Internet of Things. It helps boost their production, as well as their product and service offerings. Siemens plans to create an open IT ecosystem for OEMs and application developers based on the SAP HANA Cloud platform.

Using SAP HANA Cloud Platform, the Solheim Cup, one of the most prestigious tournaments in women’s golf, is able to drive a new digital golf experience. SAP developed an official fan-engagement app powered by the SAP HANA Cloud Platform to offer fans information on venue data, team and player profiles, social media functionality, and an interactive quiz. To ensure a smarter commute to and from the tournament, the app also provides up-to-date travel and parking information, as well as integration with the TwoGo platform and mobile app for ride sharing.


Stay tuned for Part II in which you’ll learn more about innovative business applications.

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