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Author's profile photo Frank Ruland

How Can We Cultivate an Innovation Mindset in Our Customers? With a Little Help from Our GSSPs

How Can We Cultivate an Innovation Mindset in Our Customers? With a Little Help from Our GSSPs.


By Frank Ruland


Our customers are currently at an existential crossroad. They are facing unparalleled challenges from global forces outside their control, including the war in Russia and the remnants of a global pandemic that changed the way we live, the way we work, and how we spend our money. Supply chains continue to face a multitude of obstacles and disruptions, and the call is growing daily for businesses to be more sustainable, resilient, and socially responsible.


Because of all of these forces, the way we do business has changed dramatically and continues to change daily. Customers need to transform into sustainable intelligent enterprises without missing a beat to keep up with the demand for their goods and services– and staying in business. Business transformations happen in what feels like the blink of an eye in every industry all over the world. Working in this kind of environment requires business leaders to develop an innovation mindset.


What is an innovation mindset? I think it’s a mentality to constantly adapt, improve and transform – fueled partly by digital or technology advancements, the desire for growth and partly by business demand – to create the outcomes we want for now and the future. It may sound odd and jargony, but I see so many companies right now who are not there yet. Why? Perhaps because they haven’t been fast enough to adjust to the new situation, don’t have the right capabilities or skills in place, or lack the right ecosystem of partners to help them achieve their goals. Or maybe, they just don’t know where to start. To support our customers and accelerate industry transformation, SAP and our partners have come together to drive co-innovation.


SAP’s industry cloud strategy fast-tracks business transformation with the help of our ecosystem.


SAP’s industry cloud strategy simplifies access to ground-breaking vertical solutions that support next business practices across industries. Built by SAP and our partners on an open platform, these solutions are interoperable with our intelligent suite, enabling customers to drive business transformation profitably and sustainably, seize new opportunities, and manage business disruption and changes within industries. Together with our partners, we help customers chart a course to industry-specific business transformation.


Even though we are celebrating our 50th anniversary as a company, SAP was created to meet the challenges that businesses face today. Our clarion call is to help our customers improve their businesses and the world by becoming sustainable, intelligent enterprises. But we can’t do that alone. We enlist the expertise of our ecosystem to help our customers achieve their goals at lightening-pace. They are at the center of our industry cloud strategy.


Our Global Strategic Service Partners (GSSPs) drive growth in our most strategic areas. SAP works closely with GSSPs to accelerate our digital transformation agenda, scale our innovation, and deliver solutions to fit our customers’ needs.


Our work with GSSPs fuels growth and success for customers, other partners, and SAP by capitalizing on joint development and joint innovation to achieve our strategic goals. Simply put, our GSSPs help our customers achieve and cultivate the innovation mindset that we strive for every single day. They have that secret sauce that I see so many companies struggle with as they try to bear down on business transformation and respond to the disruptions and challenges in their industries.


If you want to learn more about our GSSP approach, I encourage you to read our e-book focused on the work our partners are doing in this space. In this new eBook, you can discover how they help customers with:


  • Industry subject matter expertise and advisory resources for business processes
  • Ready-to-deploy industry cloud partner software solutions.
  • Standalone customer-specific solutions for following the industry cloud architecture principles.
  • Pre-built or pre-configured integration services to extend and connect third-party applications with SAP solutions.
  • Pre-integrated or pre-built industry data models and content.


Our strategic partners play an integral role in executing our industry cloud strategy and helping our customers achieve that innovation mindset as well as time to value. But I’m curious – how do you define an innovation mindset?


To learn more about SAP’s industry cloud strategy, watch our series of Innovation Value Stories featuring many of our GSSPs. Please join the SAP Industry Cloud community for more conversations about how industry cloud and having an innovation mindset can help customers achieve business transformation. If you are a partner interested in joining SAP’s industry cloud ecosystem, this is also the place for you. We would be happy to hear from you.


Frank Ruland is Global Vice President, Industry Ecosystems for SAP. You can follow him on LinkedIn.



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