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a little less daily routine, a little more surprises please

Some days ago a blog was published about snowfall in the Fiori Launchpad. Yes, you read right: snow! It wasn’t about the implementation of a business requirement, but about some “surprise” for the users who work with the Fiori Launchpad. This fits in perfectly with the current season. It made me think of my own experiences, because I like creative and unusual ideas.

What does my first contact look like every day with an SAP ERP system? Actually always the same. I simplify the access with KeePass and KeeSAPLogon and jump immediately to the transaction I need. No snow … daily routine without surprise … 🙁

Google shows us that there is another way. From time to time there is a special topic to discover on their search page and they change their logo (Google Doodle). If you want, you can use the search or find out more about the topic of the day.

Why should this be different when contacting our SAP ERP systems? After all, I have the feeling that such individuality is positively perceived by users.

In a quiet moment, I had some thoughts of a solution in the SAP ERP environment. I like to share my thoughts because maybe someone can develop them into something useful and have the time and resources to make a prototype (it may also be a nice project for students or apprentices).

Basic idea

To make the access to an SAP ERP system more interesting for the user.

Basic points

Here are some basic points. Feel free to add your ideas.

  1. When logging on to the system, a message should be displayed to the user.
  2. The message shouldn’t always be displayed, but only on special occasions.
  3. The message should be short.
  4. The message should vary, so that boredom does not arise.
  5. The message should be interesting for the user.
  6. There should be a possibility for interaction.
  7. In the ideal case, the messages closes automatically after some time. So the user doesn’t have to make any input.

Topics

Here are some topic suggestions for the message text with examples. Feel free to add your proposals.

  1. General hints and reminders
    • patch installed
    • system on weekend due to patch offline
    • recommendation of a nice blog from the SAP Community Network
    • party on Friday after work
  2. Personal hints
    • take a walk with colleagues during lunch break today
    • drive carefully on the way to work (bad weather)
    • training for product is offered
  3. Survey
    • Do you already know the following topic?

Implementation proposal

At the moment many users are probably still working with the SAP GUI. So my proposal is for this client.

Every user can set up a personal start transaction. So you would need an application that for example calls the function module “POPUP_TO_CONFIRM”. Why this function module? Because you can display a short text with it and always has three buttons. Two buttons are configurable.

Which topics are interesting for a user could possibly be determined based on his permissions. Alternatively, he can maintain personal settings and choose the topics of interest.

The text should be configurable per database table. Each entry should be assigned to exactly one topic and be time-dependent.

Example

When accessing a development system on Friday morning, you will be asked whether you know the “Separation of Concerns” principle? If you answer “No”, the system offers you to open the associated wiki page in the Internet browser so that you can find out more about that topic.

 

So far these are my thoughts. What do you think?

 

Thank you for reading and have a good time.

Michael

4 Comments
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  • Nice blog Michael, and great idea. What I would like is some means for our Level 1 support people to easily compose their own messages for their local business users (notifying problem resolution status, key system stats, whatever). This would really improve the sense of ownership of the system by the most important people of all – the users!

    Edit: I was forgetting about Fiori Notifications: this will be wildly popular! https://blogs.sap.com/2018/06/21/fiori-for-s4hana-top-5-fiori-features-that-bring-value-to-every-business-user/

    • Thanks for your comment and the note about the Fiori Notifications.

      I have to check this kind of notifications but I think it will implement the idea I described. So there could be only a need for the users working with SAP GUI left. If you are interested in “forging” a solution, contact me and we talk about an open source solution. Everyone is invited to participate at any time.

      If we have discussed the requirements in more detail, we can better estimate the effort to implement a solution. For the approach I described above I thought of 2 days for a little “hack”. But the longer I think about the design, the more ideas I have. They first have to be “cleaned up” and evaluated 🙂