SAP has had multiple experiments with UI design and Fiori is the latest incarnation. The big difference now is that SAP is putting every ounce of its considerable muscle to make Fiori a success. Simply put, Fiori is the new SAP GUI; it runs on mobile technology because that is the need of the current age.
Fiori is a work in progress. What that means is that Fiori has a few hundred SAP transactions, whilst GUI has close to 2000. But SAP is getting there; with each successive release of S/4 HANA, more role based apps are added to Fiori. To make sure their vision for Fiori is not ignored, SAP is switching off certain transactions from SAP GUI and only implementing them on Fiori. A good example of this is the Manage Bank Fiori app. It’s purpose is to edit / create bank accounts; however, this transaction in HANA 1511 has been disabled. In another FSCM on HANA 1511 implementation, Fiori usage is not mandatory, but still highly recommended by SAP. This should give the savvy SAP user a pause.
Lessons Learnt during Fiori Implementations
1. Follow the Yellow Brick Road. SAP lays down comprehensive best practices on how to implement Fiori. There is a Maintenance Planner tool as well, that will specifically check your selected Fiori apps against the components installed in your SAP landscape and recommend updates.
3. Transporting Fiori apps through the system landscape involves significant manual activities. It is best to note down every bit of configuration to ensure there is no inconsistency in the manual work between landscapes. For a complete list of what can be transported, please refer to the MAA section of the Fiori Best Practices guide.
4. Does this app work on iPhones? Often the answer to this is to test the app on the desired phones / tablets. We were surprised that a good number of apps work on tablets, but not on mobile phones. This is because the apps are designed for larger screens. So you can still do your Purchase Order approvals on your iPhone, but the Trial Balance app will require your iPad or desktop.
The Way Ahead
Fiori will remain a cornerstone of SAP’s solution architecture for the foreseeable future. Roadmap is in place to develop Fiori for dashboard reporting purposes as well. After all is said and done, Fiori is a step in the right direction.
SAP HANA and Analytics Leader (APAC region) at IBM