In a recent study, 84 percent of senior executives surveyed believe that digital transformation is critical for their business in the next five years. Yet only 3 percent of business leaders have pushed these changes across their organizations. That’s part of the reason why SAP introduced SAP Leonardo, a digital innovation system, earlier this year.
This week SAP announced new products, services and partner collaborations for that will further bridge the gap between digital aspirations and real-life implementations.
The news was released at SAP Leonardo Live, an event taking place this week bringing together over 1500 customers, partners and experts in Frankfurt, Germany to get a better understanding of SAP Leonardo, and put them on the fast track to innovate using technologies like machine learning, Internet of Things (IoT), blockchain and advanced analytics. Customers will also demonstrate how they’re already using SAP Leonardo solutions to digitalize their business.
New IoT Solutions for Digital Manufacturing, Logistics and Asset Management
As manufacturers’ supply chains go digital, IoT has an important role to play in modernizing the business functions that keep supply chains running uninterrupted. Gartner predicts that 8.4 billion connected things will be in use in 2017, including trucks, industrial equipment, shipping containers and pallets, there are vast amounts of data that could be utilized for improve efficiency.
But logistics still have a way to go. Often managed by faxes and phone, there’s a tremendous opportunity to use technology to redefine business processes. SAP has already digitized many of these areas: analyzing sensor data to better manage assets, predictive maintenance, connected goods and fleet tracking – to name a few.
The new SAP Leonardo IoT Bridge will bring together insights from the various SAP IoT applications into one console, giving operations managers the ability to see across different systems, analyze the data further and explore “what-if” scenarios.
For example, if there is faulty machinery at an oil refinery, an operations manager will find out right away. They can ensure maintenance is done before there is a more serious problem – and check to see if the same type of machinery is functioning property at other sites.
Using the SAP Leonardo IoT Bridge, a logistics manager can look instantly into their shipping and logistics and make sure that further shipments are diverted to other refineries. The new solution also lets employees do predictive analysis so they understand the impact re-routing oil shipments might have, and make sure operations continue seamlessly.
Also, SAP announced SAP Edge Service, a new cloud-based IoT innovation for digital manufacturing. Put simply, edge computing stores and processes data at the edge of the network. In a world of ever increasing sensors, 40 percent of IoT generated data will live close to or at the edge of the network.[i]
The problem is that most of the time, sensors send out messages simply saying “here I am.” With smart processing at the edge, the system can identify when there’s a problem, analyze it and engage the business to take immediate action. This cuts latency times: rather than data traveling to a data center, analytics and business logic can be applied right at the edge.
For example, a worker in the field is equipped with wearable IoT sensors that can detect dangerous gas levels, heart rate, and posture. By adding business intelligence to the edge, the sensor monitor for unsafe conditions and alert the employee if dangerous gases are present. If the field worker falls on their way to safety, a notice goes immediately to their manager and an emergency response team can be sent.
Last, as a result of the SAP-Apple partnership, SAP released a new cloud version of SAP Asset Manager that is iOS based and in the cloud, so people can use their mobile Apple devices to track and manage industrial assets — and make sure they’re functioning properly.
New Services and Design Thinking Offerings Help Customers Go Digital
SAP also announced services and offerings that make it easier for customers to embrace digital innovation and drive it across their company.
First up, are new services for SAP Leonardo that include technology and access to experts. During SAPPHIRE NOW 2017, SAP released four industry accelerators packages (for retail, consumer products, discrete manufacturing, and sports and entertainment) that help customers get started quickly with SAP Leonardo technologies.
This week new industry accelerators for chemicals, utilities, and travel and transportation were introduced, along with IoT accelerators for manufacturers that address specific lines of business like asset management and distributed manufacturing.
SAP also released SAP Innovation Services, which comes in three editions that help companies get up and running on SAP Leonardo. Each level combines tools, technology and expertise of business and IT professionals that will provide a customized innovation journey for customers.
For many companies, a successful and wide-spread digital journey requires employee engagement. Applications need to look good, feel good to use and have business impact. SAP is bringing SAP Leonardo to customers with design thinking principals like a user-first approach and design-led development. Working side-by-side with SAP design thinking experts, customers can more clearly identify their challenges and create right digital solutions.
SAP Build is a tool that lets non-technical people collaborative to create applications using design thinking principals (like user empathy and fast, frequent iterations.) This week SAP announced new features that guide users through the development process, making sure they build a solution that can scale without losing focus on end user needs, usability and quality.
New Cloud-Foundry packages for SAP Cloud Platform let developers create apps more easily and quickly that leverage SAP Leonardo capabilities, including machine learning, IoT and Big Data.
New Partner Engagement for the Energy Market
SAP also announced plans to collaborate with Centrica, an energy and services company, on an IoT solution that will help customers better manage energy consumption in order to bring down costs and lower their carbon footprint.
For more information, please see the press releases:
[i] IDC Reveals Worldwide Internet of Things Predictions for 2015, IDC, 2014