SAP’s Industry Cloud: Let’s talk value with SAP partner GK
Michael Scheibner is in a unique position to explain the value of SAP’s industry cloud. That’s because no matter the type of retail business a customer might have, Michael’s company is probably already successfully serving them with SAP industry cloud solution extensions.
Michael is Chief Strategy Officer for GK Software, the creator of SAP Omnichannel Point-of-Sale by GK, an SAP industry cloud solution extension. GK Software specializes in solutions for the retail industry. GK Software has what Michael describes as a “sweet spot” with grocers which is why SAP Omnichannel Point-of-Sale by GK has caught on with major grocers and global retailers.
Michael’s expertise in the industry, working with a variety of retailers, helps him easily explain the benefits of SAP’s industry cloud, so customers can quickly understand and appreciate its business value. While illustrating the common pro-cloud refrain of “faster time to market,” he brings up the example of a sportswear giant that opened a recent Olympics pop-up store . At the time, doing so involved major hardware setup and the local installation of the back-end system. Now, no longer.
“Today, if they want to do a pop-up store in a different country, they just use SAP’s industry cloud together with SAP Omnichannel Point-of-Sale by GK, and they’re ready to go,” Michael says.
Terms such as “flexibility” and “scalability” similarly find strong anecdotal footholds. The coronavirus pandemic forced retailers to adapt to what Michael described as “new requirements during challenging times.” The need to provide in-store and curbside pickup across hundreds of stores in multiple countries is one obvious example, but other examples catalyzed over these challenging last couple of years have begun to emerge, he says. They include the intense interest in personalized, frictionless shopping experiences among retailers as well as the customers they serve.
“The checkout experience needed to change for many consumers and the retailer wanted that,” Michael says. “Now you can do it far faster with SAP’s industry cloud and SAP Omnichannel Point-of-Sale by GK.
As with much else, smartphones are changing how retail is done. Michael offers the example of dynamic in-store recommendations as the consumer strolls the aisles.
“So, for example, if you usually buy your low-fat milk, and, in the next couple of minutes, you don’t put the yogurt you usually buy in your cart, you get a reminder with in-app information that you’ve maybe forgotten it,” Michael says. “That helps consumers have a better shopping experience, and it also builds customer loyalty to that retailer.”
There are, of course, aspects of SAP Omnichannel Point-of-Sale that defy the easy anecdote, including high availability; low capital outlays; enhanced security; the ability to make quick decisions based on real-time, cloud-based data; and both SAP’s heritage and scope in the retail industry.
“The differentiator is that we really offer a true omnichannel, end-to-end experience,” says, “and that’s only possible because we’re working so closely with SAP.”