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SAP plans to be a cloud juggernaut with a great customer experience, a user interface that borders on beautiful, and a growth company---all by 2017.
User interface/user experience makeovers are all the rage in the ERP space. SAP is using a Pareto approach and a couple of new tools to redefine, simplify and beautify the user experience for its customers.
A little over a month I challenged a number of technology vendors who had shifted their messaging to customer experience from something else to customer experience to show me how they could defend that transition - to show me how it was more than hot air - smoke and mirrors. So far Get Satisfaction and now SAP have met the challenge. Read it. SAP more than answered it.
The NBA signs on as the latest SAP HANA customer, seeking a new fan-friendly but data-filled experience for its official website.
Join IDC, SAP, and industry experts from Vodafone and Verizon as they discuss:- The current business environment, as well as telecom's biggest business challenges and opportunities.- Strategy into Action: How Communications Services Providers translate strategy into actions for customer facing activities- The role of BI in aligning customer experience with operational goals and metrics.
In the last post on SAP I wrote, I remarked that I wasn't a Kremlin watcher but had a fascination about how CEOs and changes in CEOs affect companies. Its been about 2 months since I wrote that and by now, as I wrap up my experience (and I am carefully choosing that word) at Sapphire, I have to say, that the effect on SAP of the co-CEOdom of Bill McDermott and J.
Last week I had the opportunity to spend time with SAP CTO Vishal Sikka and separately SAP executive board member John Schwarz, and I've been ruminating on our conversations a lot since those meetings. Fortunately I was part of a group of bloggers who have been following SAP closely, and their questions and insight were a valuable addition to the conversations and my education given their deep knowledge and practical experience.
A fresh graduate keen to embark on a career in th SAP field notes that many job ads in Singapore insist on experience.
The last few days I've been exchanging email with R 'Ray' Wang, VP and principal analyst at Forrester about the kerfuffle over SAP's unilateral decision to apply a price hike to its maintenance and support fees. Ray specializes in the enterprise market and has special experience of SAP going back many years.
A ZDNetAsia reader with BPCS experience considers whether a switch to an SAP-based career is the right thing to do.
How easy is it for someone who has ERP software experience, but not specific SAP product knowledge, to become an SAP consultant?
I've received several comments this week,directly or indirectly, that I've let the Lotus vs. Microsoft theme gettoo out of control, too petty, too whatever. That edbrill.com readerswould like to see me spend more time on my own turf, discuss other generalthemes in the industry, get more into my (daughter's) new Mac, talk about2006 plans, etc. I get it, really I do. I'm going to explainbriefly what the last few months have been like from this perspective,and move on for now.There's no subtlety in a company's businessplan when their CEOstands on a stage and says, "Wehave Lotus Notes opportunities coming out the yin-yang. I've never seen[such] a customer base waiting to be plucked." In 2005,Microsoft has put significant human and financial resource into their "NotesCompete" program. I've seen the presentations, read the informationon bounties and bundles, seen screenshots of MS intranet pages with thequote above highlighted. I've talked to business partners who havebeen flown to Microsoft meetings at MS's expense. I know about Microsoft'squantifiable goals in this area. So let's be crystal clear aboutit -- regardless of recent comments by various Microsoft employees andsupporters, Microsoft wants to beat Notes during their FY06. There'sno other objective in their business plan.All this talk about doing what's bestfor our mutual customers is nothing but a smokescreen. And I, andmy colleagues, are especially disappointed when that guise is adopted byour publicly-visible former coworkers, none of whom left Lotus directlyfor Microsoft. It's hard not to take it personally when "IBM"is attacked, ten years after IBM acquired Lotus. Or when Lotusphereis criticized, as it continues to be one of the premier IT conferencesanywhere. Or when those who speakabout migration from Notes to the Microsoft platform publicly pretend thattheir message is instead about peace, love, and integration.Do I want to do what's right for youas customers and partners? Absolutely. That's why the Lotusphereagenda featuresseveralspeakerstalkingaboutLotus and Microsoft integration,a topic I myself used to cover in Orlando. In many cases, these speakersare actual architects and developers who have implemented these solutionsin the field, not just technical marketing people like myself. Forwhat it's worth, we've taken the same approach with other 3rd party technologies,such as SAP and VMWare, with great speakers discussing real-world scenarios. (You can thank Rockyfor advocating for more of these types of sessions)Going beyond the Lotusphere-relateddiscussion, the big picture is that Microsoft is aiming a lot of weaponryat my product's customers. One thing that's very interesting is thatthis firepower is needed at all. If it was obvious on its face thatMicrosoft had a technically superior solution, they wouldn't have to investmillions of dollars and an army of people to go after Notes. Butall this effort has preciouslittle to show for it, becausein most cases, sound business analysis and decision-making wins the day. And that's why Lotus is winningnew customers from Microsoft asmuch as the installed base of Notes customers continues forward with theproduct. The last four fiscal quarters show the results -- despitethe latest attack, the Lotus and Notes revenue bases are growing. PerhapsI should thank Microsoft for putting all this effort in -- since so manyof the situations where I end up on defense actually result in net-newinvestment in IBM, Lotus, and Notes. The thanks for that arenot simply with my salesforce, but ultimately with the engineers, productmanagers, architects, and everyone else who have made Notes/Domino 7 animpressive, valuable, and useful release, and for those who are alreadyworking nights and weekends to make "Hannover"the best rich client experience ever.In the next few weeks, I promise thatthese areas will be my focus. We've got a lot of great stuff ahead,starting with Lotusphere(and Software University before that, for those IBMers and partners attending). I'm actively working on my year-in-review/3-year-blogoversary stuff,and we're going to focus (refocus?) on all the good in the world of LotusNotes, now and into the future.
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