Improve Business Outcomes with SAP Business Technology Platform Use Cases at Sapphire 2023
As the SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP) evolves, so do use cases that help to accelerate customer outcomes. They are built to enable SAP customers – from business users to developers alike – with customer-proven, business outcome-driven examples to accelerate the understanding and adoption of SAP.
SAP Business Technology Platform at SAPPHIRE
SAP BTP enables organizations to leverage the full value of their data while capturing efficiency through process automation and low-code app development without heavy IT dependency. SAP Build and SAP Datasphere are recent additions to the product line that show the continuous evolution of the SAP BTP portfolio. A recent IDC Business Value study on SAP BTP calculated that SAP customers who leverage SAP BTP can expect a 495% 3-year ROI!
SAPPHIRE will offer hundreds of sessions and learning opportunities to jumpstart your understanding of SAP BTP. I strongly recommend you attend SAPPHIRE, whether virtually or in-person, to learn more about SAP BTP and specifically to understand how BTP Use Cases we developed can truly help you in your learning journey. I have outlined 11 Use Cases that we think are the most relevant for SAPPHIRE this year as they all align with the key product themes that will be highlighted at the event this year, with links to the sessions that will help you better understand the BTP solutions used in each use case.
And finally, if you are in Orlando for the in-person event, my colleague Dan Kearnan and I will be sharing more about how you can jump-start your SAP BTP journey in Explore Business Scenarios Enabled by SAP BTP That You Can Implement Today session, so make sure to add it in your agenda. Also, my team colleague Kevin McConnell and I will be at the SAP BTP for Use with Line-of-Business Solutions demo station to answer any of your questions.
If you want to learn more about how these use cases enabled the art of the possible for SAP customers, please take a look at the News Centre article SAP BTP Use Cases Show the Art of the Possible by my SAP AppHaus colleague Imke Vierjahn.
Use Case #1. Automate processes to empower finance professionals
With constant changes in tasks and activities under time, budget, and resource pressure, manual processes continue to burden finance professionals’ day-to-day work. Think about your own business, and how many different PDFs, Word documents, spreadsheets, and other forms of documentation you need to process manually.
Gartner’s research shows that one bot can displace up to 30x the work of full-time employees, and it’s not limited to replacing only simple individual tasks but full processes like financial analysis and forecasts. SAP Build Process Automation for Finance e-Book presents how customers can use SAP’s low-code solution for extracting, classifying, then transferring data from documents to the enterprise system. Accelerating the benefits such as reduced costs and time spent on closing books, while increasing compliance is possible with prebuilt, reusable RPA bots.
By automating finance processes with SAP Build Process Automation, Alma Media was able to realize its finance function strategy and refresh closing reports 6x faster. They also automated 60% of its time-critical manual sales order processes, which in turn reduced human errors and improved data quality.
- Optimize Key Line-of-Business Processes with SAP Build Process Automation
- Demo Station: Extensibility and Automation of SAP S/4HANA Cloud
Use Case #2. Accelerate Financial Planning & Analysis
According to Gartner, finance analytics reporting and support account for almost one-third of finance function spending, and misuse of these finance analytics to make decisions could cause significant financial impact.
This emphasizes the importance of financial planning and analysis; its planning, forecasting, budgeting, and analytical activities are the key components to enabling timely, and data-driven decisions to bring value across the organization.
SAP Analytics Cloud with SAP S/4HANA Cloud can help businesses achieve their financial goals with its tightly integrated solution, while the prebuilt business accelerators are available for faster implementation. SAP customer Roche turned to SAP Analytics Cloud Planning to achieve the goal of native integration with existing data foundations to draw on historical data and optimize the financial forecasting process with predictive analytics. On top of predictive outcomes, these results are written back to SAP Business Warehouse for further processing. Being able to deliver critical insights and richer forecasts allowed Roche to achieve a 7% improvement in forecast accuracy.
- Transform Finance into a Catalyst for Business Growth and Innovation
- Evolution of Planning and Analysis from Siloed Function to C-Suite Advisor
- Drive Finance Innovation and Transformation with SAP Analytics Cloud
- Consolidating Financial and Supply Chain Planning at Mohawk Industries
- Demo station: SAP BTP for Use with Line-of-Business Solutions
A key learning from pandemic times would be that disruptions and changes make a huge impact on the supply chain. (Remember the toilet paper shortage in 2020?) Being able to forecast and manage demand and supply is proven to be increasingly important for agile and flexible supply chain planning.
SAP Business Technology Platform can help organizations to simplify processes for operational planning while producing agile forecasts faster. SAP Integrated Business Planning for Supply Chain and SAP Analytics Cloud extends supply chain planning with analytics, modelling, and what-if simulations by combining Supply Chain transactions with financial data.
This is exactly what Freudenberg Home and Cleaning Solutions aimed to achieve with the SAP Business Technology Platform. Freudenberg understood that with the rapidly fluctuating market and supply chain challenges caused by the pandemic, forecasting is crucial for them. Harmonizing the operational data and processes from across multiple verticals, locations, and suppliers in real-time into one point of truth, provided an opportunity for Freudenberg to plan 10x faster.
- Increase Business Agility with SAP BTP and SAP Business Network
- How Supply Chain Leaders Are Proactively Addressing Supply Chain Risk
- Secure Your Business with a Risk-Resilient and Sustainable Supply Chain
Another significant impact on people’s lives includes the shift to remote/hybrid work settings. Bloomberg Intelligence’s research found that nearly three-quarters of London’s workers would rather quit their jobs than return to the office full-time, and while some organizations are mandating an increased number of days in the office, the hybrid model won’t be going away anytime soon.
These ‘deskless employees’ have different needs for information and tools, including a heavier reliance on mobile devices to complete their tasks. So, for these employees, a role-specific mobile app with the ability to access information across systems and automate processes that sometimes can be redundant, and complex becomes increasingly important.
Gartner forecasts that 80% of technology products will be built by non-technical people by 2024. With SAP Build Apps, business users with no previous coding experience are enabled to develop full-stack applications with drag-and-drop simplicity. In addition, with the pre-built bots from SAP Build Process Automation, jump-starting projects is possible without heavy IT involvement. Global energy powerhouse Uniper’s HR saw great benefits of increased productivity of their HR team with this mobile access to processes running in SAP applications, increasing their ability to handle mobility requests by 70% while decreasing the risk of compliance violations by 25%.
- Enhance Your HR Experience with Low-Code Extensibility
- Give Your Business Experts the Power to Innovate with SAP Build Solutions
Use Case #5. Plan and Predict Workforce Demand
Even though workforce planning has a direct impact on the top & bottom line of an organization, in many cases, workforce planning is done with no close integration with the financial data and planning. In addition, the fluctuation and volatility of today’s markets cause business leaders to be reactive and short-sighted to focus on immediate headcount needs.
Hence the goal of workforce planning should be the alignment of headcount changes and financial plans/budgets. Being able to plan on both aggregated and detailed individual level, while monitoring and adjusting according to forecasted financial impacts allow the results of workforce planning to be accurately reflected in overall financial planning. Further, this operational view will also allow the organization to start building its long-term strategic workforce plan.
SAP Analytics Cloud for Planning and SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central enables this tight collaboration and smooth integration between HR, Finance, and the rest of the business. By bringing together financial and workforce plans, an organization can determine the optimal workforce mix to align with the financial goals of the organization. Republic of Serbia’s Ministry of Finance witnessed the power of Workforce Planning with SAP Analytics Cloud for Planning as they can now prepare a new version of the HR budget in less than an hour which is 10x less time than it used to be with previous Excel-based processes.
- Simplify Workforce Planning and Analytics Across Your Organization
- Improve Business Performance by Connecting Cloud ERP and HXM
Unexpected business climate and worldwide economic volatility continue to keep procurement professionals on their toes. To tackle these challenges, In short, organizations need to decrease data silos and provide a transparent landscape to trigger appropriate decisions promptly.
To achieve a real-time view of the ever-so-changing business needs, SAP Ariba procurement can take advantage of multiple SAP BTP solutions to provide these insights. SAP Datasphere delivers seamless access to business data with business context and logic intact, while SAP Analytics Cloud provides one simple cloud solution for advanced analytics and reporting. With improved spend & process visibility, SAP Ariba solutions can be further extended with low-code or no-code SAP Build solutions.
As an example, the SAP Business Technology Platform enables Barclaycard to achieve a frictionless procure-to-pay process as they improved working capital with 56 days to settle after a supplier is paid which gives Barclaycard an advantage in discount negotiation.
- Increase Business Agility with SAP BTP and SAP Business Network
- Embedding Agility into Your Source-to-Pay Transformation Program
- Next-Generation Procurement Innovation Highlights from an ASUG Focus
Use Case #7. Deliver connected enterprise experiences
Many existing business problems, regardless of the Line of Business, result from the silos in data and processes in an organization. At the end of the day, untimely decisions derived from fragmented data have a greater impact than just within the organization; it can also negatively impact customer experience.
SAP Integration Suite simplifies integration by allowing processes across the enterprise and systems to consolidate into one. With many prebuilt integrations and ready-to-use APIs available, business users can achieve efficiency without heavily relying on IT. Harmonizing experiences for employees to customers alike, different verticals can rely on the same accurate and real-time data to make consistent and effective decisions powered by SAP Analytics Cloud.
Topcon Positioning Systems, Inc. is on a journey with SAP to consolidate all seven of its systems into one and now can see real-time data across the enterprise. This transformation allowed Topcon to see a 25% reduction in time for full regional consolidated month-end closing, with a 500% increasing their user base since implementing SAP Customer Experience solutions on top.
- Build a Blueprint for Digital Transformation with SAP Customer Experience
- The Customer-Obsessed Digital Leader
International Data Corporation (IDC) share that the global shortage of full-time developers is driving organizations to provide non-technical developers with tools they can use to create or update digital solutions without the help of professional developers. IDC also forecasts that worldwide low-code, no-code, and intelligent developer technologies revenue will grow at 17.8% from 2021-2026 (Compound Annual Growth Rate).
SAP’s SAP Build Apps provide the Low-code and no-code (LCNC) tool for organizations to leverage and solve business and IT challenges and innovate at market speed. The goal is to empower more employees to build software through an easy-to-consume model. Also, leveraging the side-by-side extensibility allows developers to develop an app to fully utilize the capabilities offered by SAP Build Apps and keep the core clean.
Pif Paf Alimentos, one of the top ten companies in the food sector in Brazil, built and deployed a working mobile app solution in less than three weeks with SAP Build Apps’ low-code capability. SAP Build Apps gave Pif Paf the flexibility and speed to further innovate and reduce 30% maintenance order handling time with the test group.
- Realizing a Clean Core with SAP S/4HANA and SAP BTP at Mohawk Industries
- Keeping Your Core Clean Through Intelligent Accounting Automation
- Enabling Business Transformation with RISE with SAP and SAP Build Solutions
SAP Master Data Governance allows organizations to consolidate SAP and third-party master data while maintaining the data quality and central governance to keep the master data pristine. This provides the central hub for master data that can be implemented by non-technical business users of the organization.
This united view of master data across the organization will allow your business to gain value with increased efficiency, as ThyssenKrupp Presta AG did. As one of the world’s largest manufacturers of steering columns and systems, ThyssenKrupp built an intelligent infrastructure for ERP to standardize and automate processes and data. By applying best practices for technical design and infrastructure while taking advantage of their own industry expertise, they were able to improve transparency, analytics, and reporting with higher-quality master data created and managed with SAP Master Data Governance.
- Hear How Nestlé Is Accelerating Processes with SAP Master Data Governance
- Master Data as a Critical Foundation in Huntsman’s Journey to SAP S/4HANA
Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG) is becoming an increasingly more important factor in consumers’ purchase decisions. McKinsey US found that more than 60% of their respondents said they’d pay more for a product with sustainable packaging, and 78% of US consumers say that a sustainable lifestyle is important to them according to Nielsen IQ.
The finance sector also continues to evolve as people and businesses transform into more sustainability-centric lifestyles. Novobanco, a Portuguese bank based in Lisbon, Portugal, shares this passion for ESG and sustainability. And together with SAP and the partner Connect Earth, Novobanco built a banking sustainability calculator mobile app that provides individual consumers’ carbon footprint by analyzing their bank account transactions and spending behaviours.
After the project, SAP further extended the application with a GPT scenario offered via the Azure Open AI service with SAP BTP. This opens the possibility of combining business context with the large language models on SAP BTP while protecting critical or sensitive data to 3rd party APIs.
- AI at SAP: Infusing Intelligent Technologies to Maximize Business Outcome
- Future-Proof Your Business with an Integrated Cross-Portfolio Experience
In March 2023, SAP announced SAP Datasphere, the next generation of SAP Data Warehouse Cloud. By enabling an open data ecosystem with data fabric architecture, it realizes the promise of always-on, high-quality business data. It’s no surprise that data fabric’s market value is forecasted to touch $4.2 Billion USD by 2026, according to Allied Market Research.
SAP Datasphere also provides a symbiotic ecosystem with open-data partners including Collibra, Confluent, Databricks, and DataRobot. These partnerships enrich SAP data in SAP Datasphere by federating non-SAP data, so business users only have to access SAP Datasphere to view the data.
ÁREAS S.A.U is a great example of how SAP Datasphere helps organizations to unify their data landscape into one source of authoritative data to drive insights. ÁREAS, a global travel catering company out of Barcelona, Spain, built a single data source of truth for enterprise-wide information by consolidating SAP and non-SAP data sources, such as SQL, Hyperion, Microsoft Excel, and .csv files. On top of unifying their data landscape based on the SAP Datasphere, SAP Analytics Cloud is deployed as a dashboard and analytics application to automate repetitive tasks. With SAP BTP, ÁREAS saw a 3-day reduction in time to calculate worldwide daily sales.