Digital Transformation for SMBs – Design Thinking methodology and Build.me
By Gianluigi Bagnoli, Trinidad Martinez, Adva Ovadia Hershtik
In previous blogs we talked about Digital Transformation and Intelligent Enterprise. We saw how to differentiate your solution from the others by proposing disruptive scenarios that make your solution more effective, more usable, simpler. In a single word, intelligent.
We will change now a bit the perspective, and we will attack the core of the problem: how can you understand the real pains and needs of your customers and give them back the solution they are expecting? It is not an easy task because many times the needs are not even known by your customers, and you need a way to discover them. The technique proposed by SAP is called Design Thinking and we will discuss it in this blog. In addition, we will see how to create a Fiori prototype connecting to SAP Business One or SAP ByDesign without writing a single line of code. Finally, we will learn how to combine SAP Cloud Platform services like Machine Learning into your application, so it becomes a digital solution.
The Digital Era is evolving into the Intelligence Era
Over the past 45 years, SAP has been on a journey with our customers to help them create value for their organizations by applying technology to solve some of their most complex challenges. In each era of enterprise computing, we have evolved our strategy and product portfolio to help our customers run better. And more recently, over the last 10 years, as cloud computing and Big Data became more pervasive with the decline in storage costs, we helped our customers begin their own digital transformations with SAP HANA software and an extensive portfolio of cloud applications.
Now, as technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, the Internet of Things (IoT), advanced analytics, and blockchain become mainstream, SAP has a new opportunity to help customers become intelligent enterprises with new capabilities that enable the workforce to focus on higher-value outcomes.
Design Thinking Methodology
SAP Design Thinking is our unique approach to address customer pains and propose them the right solution. Look at how we take people, process, & place to find real solutions to real problems. It is a method designers use in ideation and development, that also has applications elsewhere. The method describes a human-centered, iterative design process.
Design Thinking methodology includes 3 main stages that overlap and loop back until the desired outcome is reached.
- Discover – Explore opportunities to add value and delight. Identify the problem to solve and for whom, then talk to end users and uncover their real needs.
- Design – You understand the problem and the needs – now create the best solution. Prototype, test and iterate your design with end users.
- Deliver – You’ve tested your software design with users – now Build the actual solution. Validate, adjust, and release your product out into the world.
To learn more about design thinking visit: http://design.sap.com/designthinking.html
One of the stages of the design thinking process is designing and creating a prototype.
Build is a cloud-based, collaborative design tool that allows you as a consultant to create and share user-friendly, interactive prototypes, that are based on end-user feedback studies without writing any code. Build makes it easier to capture more accurate user feedback and jumpstart development.
- Jumpstart design with Fiori Templates – The gallery helps you create high fidelity prototypes. Choose from a catalog of Fiori application prototypes that you can import and remix.
- Create delightful apps in some steps – Apply design thinking best practices to design your application. Build’s learning content is practical, and you can implement it immediately.
- Bring your ideas to life – Use pictures or sketches to create clickable prototypes or use drag-n-drop UI5 components for refined, high fidelity prototypes.
- Gather feedback from your users – User research capabilities enable you to collect verbal and non-verbal feedback – aggregated into a useful and practical format.
Start using Build today, It’s FREE – Design Your First App with Build
Learn more on how to create a High fidelity prototype on Build from the SAP Business One Extensibility video Prototyping with Build.me 3/4: Prototype 2 Create a High Fidelity Prototype. and start developing your first Build high fidelity prototype by following the detailed instructions published here.
Extending your Build prototype with WebIDE
Once your prototype designed and validated by the customer you can reuse it in the development phase. Build prototypes can be easily imported to SAP WebIDE, the tool for SAPUI5/Fiori development, with just a few clicks. Developers can then implement the specific business logic required for your app having the Build prototype as the UX starting point.
You can find out more details and the steps required in the SAP Business One Extensibility eLearning video Prototyping with Build.me 4/4: Extending the BUILD Prototype.
We propose you to put in practice all the concepts explained on this blog by following a detailed step by step exercise instructions. This exercise will guide you through all steps starting from the design phase (done by the consultant and confirmed by the customer using Build tool) to the implementation (done by the developers using WebIDE tool) using the Build prototype as starting point.
The exercise begins with the design of a Build prototype showing the list of items available in our Smart Shop SAP Business One or SAP ByDesign ERP (HandsOn_Build_Instructions.pdf).
Then continues with the second part (HandsOn_WebIDE_CF_Instructions.pdf):
- The import of the prototype into WebIDE, that generates a SAP Fiori application project.
- The connection to a real SAP Business One and/or ByDesign to show live ERP data.
- The customization and further development of the SAP Fiori application.
- The development of a SAP Cloud Foundry backend application taking advantage of SAP Leonardo Machine Learning algorithms for Similarity scoring. The backend application explained here is based on the backend app described in the blog Digital Transformation for SMBs – the Intelligent Enterprise, please check this blog for more details on the SAP Leonardo algorithms implemented.
- The connection between the SAP Fiori application and the SAP Cloud Foundry backend.
Ending up with a SAP Fiori application that looks like the customer confirmed with Build prototype but having some extra developments implemented by the developers with WebIDE.
In this blog we have discussed how Design Thinking and SAP Build can help you discover your customers’ requirements and pains by implementing disruptive scenarios that make your solution more effective, more usable, simpler. In a single word, intelligent. We also guide you through all the steps in order to build your first prototype with SAP Build and do further developments with WebIDE using your prototype as starting point.
Stay tuned for more blogs on Digital Transformation for SMBs and the positive impact for your customers!