This is tenth part of the series SAP DIY Transformation Toolset for setting your Digital Journey. In case you missed the introduction, please click here for context and links to the other selected tools sections.
SAP Road Maps
Your vendors play a key role on establishing a solid plan. You want transparency and consistency, they must “walk the talk” in accordance with their vision. Capabilities, functions, features, solutions and other future product development strategies once announced raise expectations across the community and customer base and become a natural part of envisioning, planning and transformation Roadmaps exercises inside the organizations.
Even thou most of the solution providers (including SAP) advice no to make investment decisions merely based on a product roadmap, they are an important artifact for matching short and long term goals with technology plans. Changes to those can eventually impact your future Business and IT strategy and a revision is needed (and hopefully spinning your ship wheel will get your rudders pointing at right direction with minimum impact to your sailing).
SAP takes this subject very serious and SAP Product and Solution Road Maps is the self-service tool for you to align your future strategy and architecture transition plans to SAP future product capabilities. Within the tool, you´ll can browse Road Maps by Industry, Products and Solutions. Product Road Maps focus on how features and function capabilities for a given SAP Product or technology are planned to progress over time, while Solution Road Maps focus on innovations related to business solutions and process and can include several products given a line of business and the industry.
Besides to providing a useful product overview each Road Map will bring you:
- Recent Innovations (changes made on the current and recent released product version)
- Planned Innovations (usually available on the coming release, cycle depends on each product)
- Product Direction (proposed for future release beyond current development plan (usually available 1 year ahead)
- Product Vision (presumable areas of development for the product base on technological and industry trends)
SAP lets it clear on Product Roadmaps disclaimers that SAP strategy and future developments are subject to change at any time without notice and shall not be construed as constituting an additional warranty (so no legal obligations), so you should avoid starting any solution development or decide on an investment counting on a yet non-confirmed capability.
The link to the tool can be found here. Accessing it does not require a S-user however you must register to get access to the Road Maps.
SAP Roadmaps are a great source of information when planning your current and future investments. Understand what capabilities are going to be available in future, key information for giving shape and body to the many stages of your transformation plan (future capabilities, architecture design, business impact).
Attention to your project business case results, make sure you board don’t get allured just by the numbers and make sure you assess each vendor’s ability to deliver on the promise. Check also Product and Solution Roadmaps completeness and transparency for each competitor you talk to. Roadmaps are useful in order to evaluate your various vendors in terms of Roadmaps realization history (planed x actual), as well as to identify vision and strategy synergies between your organization and your vendor digital strategy.
Solution Architects, Business Analysts, Enterprise Architects, LOB´s and Industry Experts, IT stakeholders