For many, this will be an 'inside baseball' post but for those of us who keenly watch SAP, important hires matter. The latest is Sameer Patel, previously of Sovos Group (the other half of which is our very own Oliver Marks) and the Pretzel Logic weblog.
Sameer will lead the solutions and go-to-market for collaboration and social software from SAP.
I've known this was in the works for a while as Sameer asked for my opinion on the topic. I know he spoke to many people along the way. Back in January, Sameer, Jon Reed and I were consulted by SAP on Streamwork so I know first hand what it is like to work with Sameer. He knows his stuff and has an encyclopedic understanding of the social space. He's a top communicator around complex issues and is probably the only person I know who can speak for three full minutes without taking a breath!
He joins SAP at an interesting time. Collaboration is one of the big missing pieces of functionality in ERP software that is currently handled through edge apps like Yammer and Chatter. This is how Sameer describes it:
My assessment of what it would take to execute this – specifically, aligning core business activity, data, process and exceptions with the right people and insights at the right places, quickly winnowed down the list of organizations that could most logically make this transition a reality for customers. With a pedigree in core business process, business intelligence and industry solutions, and a decisive go forward strategy that now includes real time processing, cloud and mobility, SAP’s product and solution portfolio is one of the few that affords the needed canvas to improve how we engage with customers and partners and how work really gets done internally.
The right design will come from the proper infusion of collaborative constructs right where business context emerges for individual users at every customer – a) not just inside or along side but across applications that power complete each business activity, b) when and where real time business intelligence emerges, and finally, 3) at the right (device agnostic) points of consumption. Each of these contextual elements are core to SAP’s portfolio of offerings today – both directly and via its partners.
It is only in recent times that I've become interested in Streamwork. In the past I have been a 'behind the scenes' critic of what to me was a solution looking for a problem. Today, I see it as offering enormous potential in multiple ways. For example, I'd like to see it HANA-ised and embedded within the BusinessSuite as a way of offering the start of real time cross department collaboration. But that's just a start.
This job gives Sameer a sizeable plate where he'll need to fight for attention at a time when much focus is centered upon HANA and SuccessFactors.
It goes without saying that I wish him well. It will be interesting to see how our paths cross in the coming months and years.
Others congratulating from the Twitter peanut gallery:
Rachel Happe: wow - congratulations!! @AnaDataGirl: Great move by SAP with@SameerPatel on board! http://www.news-sap.com/2012/03/13/new-executive-hire-sameer-patel-to-advance-social-enterprise-strategy-at-sap/ HT @dhinchcliffe