Why looking at SAP Roadmap Explorer is looking into SAP´s shop floor
Many chemical companies are longtime SAP customers and have quite some experiences of SAP releasing new and enhanced solution functionality at regular intervals. However, as solutions move to the Cloud, these regular intervals have become shorter and shorter. Responding to the increasing speed of change in the business environment SAP has increased the pace of innovation, with new and enhanced functionality being released quarterly for some solutions and yearly for others.
The SAP Roadmap Explorer, available at sap.com/roadmap, provides customers with advance notice of upcoming innovations so that they can plan their business and IT roadmaps with more visibility into what SAP will deliver and when. It replaces roadmap presentations we have posted on our web page in the past and that have been outdated in the moment of their publication by a real-time view about what is going on in SAP development.
Since the SAP Roadmap Explorer covers innovations in all SAP solutions and extends the past and the upcoming years (Future releases and product vision), the amount of information available is overwhelming. Luckily a rich set of selection criteria with regards to time horizon, products, processes, focus topics, and industries are available. Moreover, you should make use of the free text search.
Let us go with an example. Because the move to SAP S/4HANA is top of mind for many chemical companies, it makes sense to look, for example, at the innovations that will be available in upcoming releases of SAP S/4HANA. I’m filtering here simply on SAP S/4HANA, which will display the innovations planned for the SAP S/4HANA Cloud private edition, the option most chemical companies are currently considering. The SAP S/4HANA Cloud filter will display similar information for the SAP S/4HANA Cloud public edition. Since SAP S/4HANA Cloud private edition is on a yearly release schedule, you’ll find most of the innovations in the Q4 section, although some limited scope functionality is delivered in quarterly service packs. I also choose Chemicals as industry filter, Q4 20021 -2024 as time horizon and Dangerous Goods management as free text search term. The following picture brings up the results with a reasonable number of innovations I can easily browse.
Since the integration of product compliance capabilities into business processes are important, we take a closer look at one of the innovations – Integrating product compliance checks into purchasing.
Clicking on the innovation brings you to a more detailed view describing what it is all about, providing its benefits, structuring it into features including according links to the online documentation, having some technical background information, and pointing to the business roles this innovation is made for. In addition, you get even screenshots that can be enlarged to see what you really get.
The information comes directly out of our development planning software where backlog items are maintained and prioritized and aligned with our portfolio planning. Therefore, it is like looking into the shop floor of SAP where the software is created.
You saw just one example of the direction SAP S/4HANA is taking to support the chemical industry. I encourage you to use SAP Roadmap Explorer to investigate innovations in other product areas as well looking forward to your feedback regarding the tool and the roadmap it displays.