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Personal Insights

2021 and the SAP Community

As I sit, like many others, at home in my cozy home office with a coffee next to me I begin to think about 2021 and reflect on what has to have been one of the oddest years of my life. I‘ve heard all the jokes about January being the first month with hindsight or that today is December 42nd, 2020. Personally I was a huge fan going into the year 2020, I even referred to it as the new roaring 20s. So yeah quite the plot twist I guess…

It was not all negative though, in fact I can think of a multitude of great things that did happen and I found to be quite impressive!

Impressive of course are many of the things that all of you have been doing!  Thank you for allowing us to be part!

Kind of trend there of things going virtual and bringing people together! For me this is a key part of why we do what we do, the people aspect! All of the people, broad and far!

So many awesome projects and things there, many of which driven and possible because all of you – THANK YOU!!!

Let‘s take a look back, everyone loves numbers so let me share a few that are meaningful to me in particular.

We‘ve doubled our influencer team to bring even more focus to the SAP Champions and SAP Mentors.

We set a high priority goal for Q1 of this year, „Define what it means FOR you to be  in one of these programs,“ this is 1 priority topic above all others until SAP and our members of these programs are in agreement. We had calls with them a few weeks ago and told them we want to work together and outline the future together. I am excited to see what the team and these 100+ folks come up with! Our influencers, all of you that are part of these programs, are crucial to SAP and something we definitely will be putting our focus on!

We more than doubled our engagement team, these are the folks dedicated to working with the various groups inside of SAP (product or topic) to help them come into the community and bring their expertise and product/topic information to all of you. They are also the ones ones working tirelessly to ensure that your feedback, requests, and comments are flowing back into SAP to continuously improve.

It’s not always to gather feedback from so many out there on so many different topics but it’s something we want and need to do, so expanding the team will allow us to be able to also expand coverage and activities.

We are defining the top 5 items in terms of technology we want to see accomplished for http://community.sap.com in 2021. We‘ve tried in so many different ways to address what we felt were critical topics, 2020 corrected us and told us we need to be more flexible and more focused. We’ve also realised that finding solutions that are balanced for all parties involved is even more challenging. I get emails and messages from folks on a daily basis asking why this or why that. It’s a tough call to make. Some make use of the site as is and are happy, others less so.

We are still engaged on https://influence.sap.com/sap/ino/#/campaign/896 and working through all the requests we can. Since 2016 we‘ve managed to deliver 152 in part or in whole, 15 are now in long term planning and consideration (mostly related to the popular Universal ID topic) and 19 are now under review for 2021.

We’ve also a backlog of items with additional items pushing towards the 50 mark. These came in on so many various different channels that we’ve lost the overview in some cases of who requested or why they requested. We’ll need to be selective and more critical of the back log and requests going forward. 84 requests for feature modifications, changes or even complete stack overhauls is excessive.

Going forward, and we acknowledge that not everyone is a fan of the site or process, but for submitting ideas going forward https://influence.sap.com/sap/ino/#/campaign/896  is the only location we will review for suggestions. Don’t be shocked when you post a question or something somewhere else and that is the response you get.

There was also so much more content added to the platform, topic pages, tags and more.

  • 50,000+ new questions posted 67% already with answers
  • 9000+ new blog posts published
  • 8+ million page views on those blog posts
  • 91% of the blog posts liked and commented on with over 5000 comments
  • 117,000+ tutorials completed (1395 tutorials available)
  • Almost 1 million page views on Topic pages
  • 2000+ took the “Tour of the Community
  • 79 Community Calls with thousands of attendees and 10s of thousands of views

Enough of the numbers and bits and pieces on housekeeping, 2020 was a year…. not sure I can say more on that.

Although travel ground to a rapid halt back in March for me I think I spoke and meet with more community members than any other year.

It was also a hard time meeting those members, there is a lot of frustration out there. A lot of folks who wish things were a certain way. I’ve seen and used every iteration our community has gone through since 2003 and there are certain things I personally despise about our tools and other things I personally love about our tools. No one will ever be 100% happy with things, we all know that and we all accept that – it’s the reality of an online world.

What I do appreciate are those who offered suggestions, helped to go through our list of submitted feature requests and gave their own feedback on ideas and topics for the roadmap and backlog.

I had several ask me why I don’t respond on Twitter more or other social channels, the answer is I would rather have a conversation and I can’t do that effectively without getting the on the phone. There is too much room for misunderstandings and disagreements otherwise. Want to talk then just reach out, open invitation to email me and setup a call.

When I think about 2020 and all the different things that happened, started and have continued and how we have adapted on so many levels to the world around us I am still energised, I am still excited and I am still positive as we move forward!

We finished 2020 in a incredible way with a whole new style of SAP TechEd with all the content and experts being available as we move into 2021 here in the Community! In fact SAP TechEd this year meant something completely different to the SAP Community as a program. This year we integrated to the tag and topic page level with the platform. Registration to the event was integrated at the core level with the Community as well!  

The event itself was just crazy with over 90k registrations and attendees, the view count I still can‘t fathom without feeling a bit overwhelmed – but more importantly this SAP TechEd every attendee was directly connected to the Community.

If you have not already noticed I‘m sure you will go look but every attendee received a badge, even those members who are still in lurking mode and have not turned their profiles public.

 

As we move into 2021 we are going to bring more of the SAP TechEd content, speakers and experts to the Community and begin doing a series of replays and hands on activities – so if you missed a session during the event you’ll be able to pick it up here now and I honestly can’t think of a better way to kick off 2021 than being able to bring even more to all of you!

February will even have (as hinted above) our next CTO open Q&A call.

Stay tuned for the details, dates and times!

 

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