Transcript Blog: SAP’s Industry Cloud Special Edition- Engineering, Construction, and Operations
To kick-off a new series focusing on SAP’s Industry Cloud, Josephine Monberg interviews Johnny Clemmons, Global Head for the Engineering, Construction, and Operations Industry at SAP and Donald Wachs, Head of Industrial Equipment and Manufacturing at BearingPoint. Hear about the open innovation platform for SAP, our partners, and our customers, and learn specific EC&O solutions in this episode of Industry Insights by SAP.
Hello everyone. And welcome to this episode of our podcast industry insights by SAP. So I think we can all agree that the world is evolving faster than ever. And if companies want to not just thrive, but survive, they need to be resilient, efficient, and flexible in order to continue to support their own strategic transformation to support our customers in achieving this. SAP has launched something called industry cloud. Sounds familiar? Well, we’ve been talking about industry cloud since 2014, but what we have now is different. I promise. And on this episode, my mission is to dive deeper into exactly what makes this industry cloud different and how partners can use its capabilities, working with customers to innovate in real time. So we’re going to give you tangible examples and to make it even more real, we’re starting off with looking at one of the industries that SAP has rolled out, and that industry is the engineering construction and operations industry. And to help us do this, I can’t think of better guests to have, I guess, their virtual studios. And that is Johnny Clemens. Who’s the global industry head for the engineering construction operations industry from SAP. And then we also have Donald Wachs, who’s the head of the industrial equipment and manufacturing at SAP partner, Bearing Point. So thank you both so much for being with us. Could you please just introduce yourself to our listeners, maybe Johnny starting off with you.
Sure, so our team really looks at the industry end to end and we look very specifically at emerging technologies and trends in the industry so that we can build solutions to meet our customers where they need to be in the next one to three years and deliver them new valuable solutions.
Amazing. And Donald, how about you? What do you do at BearingPoint?
Thanks- I’m 25 years in consulting and helping project-based companies to transform their businesses, especially with the help of SAP software. I’m happy to be part of this call.
So let’s start off very basic, right? Because I don’t want to assume that people know what industry cloud is. So Johnny, could you just tell our listeners what is industry cloud?
So industry cloud is really an integral part of SAP’s intelligent enterprise strategy. And if you’re familiar with that strategy, you understand that it starts with the SAP business technology platform at its base. It has an application layer in the middle and at the very top, it has our network solutions within that application layer, you have the, you know, the traditional intelligent enterprise solutions from SAP like S4, and success factors. And what we’ve added is this industry cloud section within there where we’re able to build along with our partners, a very industry specific functionality that’s built on that same business technology platform so that it connects seamlessly to the rest of the enterprise intelligent enterprise solutions.
Right. And Johnny, we’re obviously doing all of this to help our customers. So what are the benefits of industry cloud for SAP customers?
So really for customers, what they’ve always wanted right, is a seamless set of solutions that give them the very deep industry functionality that they need so that they can do their business processes seamlessly. In the end, that’s the objective of the industry cloud is to provide that deep industry functionality for our customers in order to allow them to have these seamlessly connected solutions that really drive value within their business.
So let’s try to make this very tangible for our audience, that’s listening in. So what solutions are available today as part of the industry cloud for the engineering construction and operations industry. And it’d be great if you could also share an example of a customer that’s leveraging these solutions.
Sure. So, a few examples of that. So there’s a construction specific enterprise health and safety solution built by one of our partners. There’s the next generation equipment and tools management solution called etm.next built by bearing point. And then there’s an SAP built solution called the SAP project intelligence network. And what that solution is, is it’s a solution that uses the 3d model or what they call a building information model of a construction project and uses that model as the central point of collaboration so that we can connect all of the different parties that are involved in a construction project from the owner to the general contractor, to the engineers and the subcontractors, and give them a common view of what’s happening on that project. And an example of a customer using that is the German army. They’ve been using this solution for a while now to really start to improve the way that they deliver their design and construction of their projects. And they recently won an e-government competition within the German government. So getting real value out of that.
So we’re already seeing how this is bringing real value to our customers, and Johnny, you just mentioned ETM next and how you partnered with bearing point. We’re so lucky to have Donald with us today, I guess. Johnny first, could you tell us a little bit more about that partnership with bearing point, and then I’ll also love to hear your thoughts on that. Of course, Donald, but first John tells a little bit more about that partnership.
Yeah. So what we needed to do was build a next generation equipment tools management solution. So we’ve had equipment tools management as part of the SAP suite for a number of years, but, you know, going forward, we knew that we needed a modernized solution that delivers real deep industry functionality and incorporates the, you know, the new technologies that are out there. And so we wanted to build that as part of the industry cloud, we were fortunate enough to connect with BearingPoint over this topic who was also interested in it, and really just worked together with a group of customers to build out this solution.
And Donald, what has your experience been like? And can you tell us a little bit more about ETM next?
Yeah. Happy to do so, first of all, I say, I have to copy. It was a great experience with SAP and we were able to get first customers together where we really in a joint team started to develop this solution enabled by the SAP cloud. That really helps us to get a nice if you like application, which is fully integrated into the processes of the ERP system, which is very important for those customers, but also from the UI perspective of full integrated feeding from ERP fuel, if you like go to SAP from then also the industry cloud most of our customers looking into this topic right now are interested in a very integrated and SAP proven business application. And this is really what the SAP cloud offers.
Hmm. And what would you say some of the business challenges that ETM next is solving for the construction and other industry customers?
Equipment and tools management is if you like 20% of, let’s say, as a business that you have to do, if you do huge construction work, right, you need to manage the right equipment at the right place. You have to plan in a right manner. You have to organize the shipments. You have to document the shipments that even today, especially more care about safety and compliance and zone all together needs a digital solution, which is available on cloud, but also in the field. Why are mobile technologies, whether it’s on the mobile pats or whether it’s on phones to really interact with central planning, but also for reporting of problems and ingesting of information for the billing that is of course also an important element to support the food process of equipment and tools management
And Donald from an SAP partner perspective. And as someone who’s been working with our customers for 20 plus years, how do you think that the industry cloud benefits our customers?
I think this is a great invention because there’s implementations, I can think of which we’re without development. Every implementation needs add on says is out of question. And especially in this industry project driven, you have a lot of other tools interacting with the ERP system and with the industry cloud, we have really, it’s a possibility seamlessly to add on work in a way that is not conflicting with the ERP core. So it’s very efficient to be developed on the other side- All the new digital ideas, ingestion of IOT, modern frameworks, modern front ends, and especially also integration to the mobile world.
Hmm. And Donald, do you see bearing point continuing to work with SAP on building similar solutions on an industry cloud for your customers?
For sure. Now we have an experiences journey and I like to thank here also SAP as we helped us as a partner to get along on that. And we definitely see as a clear vision to have a verticalized solution for our customers. They are all searching, not for 20 different cloud solutions. They would like to have this thing all integrated, ideally with the same UI. And this is definitely for us also compelling to go beyond if you like the project-based EC and O industry into other solutions and explore them also on the industry cloud.
And Johnny, I think this has been really insightful and understanding both industry cloud better, but also what’s going on specifically in the engineering construction operations industry. So there might be some customers listening right now thinking, well, how do I get started? Right. We’ve seen what the benefits of industry cloud is. So Johnny, how do customers get started? And perhaps also, what do you think the future holds for industry cloud and the engineering and construction operations industry?
Sure. So the easiest way to get started is to go to the SAP app center. You can obviously search for it on Google, but it’s actually SAP app center.com is the direct link to it. And then when you’re going there, you can search for solutions in a number of different ways you can search by industry. But it’s important to understand that these solutions are built to be interoperable with one another, as well as interoperable with the SAP intelligent suite of solutions. So just because you find one, something under a single industry doesn’t mean it’s not applicable in yours because industry lines continue to blur. And so the future of the app center and the industry cloud solutions, I think is really bright because we’re going to build more and more of these solutions, more and more customers are going to adopt them and use them in cross industry ways that are going to really create a lot of value for our customers. So very excited.
So this is the platform and infrastructure that allows customers to collaborate across industry lines, which like you mentioned, Johnny are blurring and then to bring in great partners like yourselves, Donald bearing point, who can, you know, create solutions for customers that are fully integrated, just makes life a lot easier for customers as one, and really enables this rapid innovation. That’s so critical in today’s world. So on those words, Johnny and Donald, thank you so much for coming on the show and telling everybody more about industry cloud, what the future holds more about the engineering construction operations industry, and just giving us real, tangible examples of how customers can get started with the industry cloud and what’s already available today. So thank you both. And to everybody who listened to this episode, thank you so much for tuning in. Hopefully I’ll see you on the next episode.