Posted by WSS on March 11, 2023 | Comments Off on SAP Collaboration with Microsoft Teams
Each of us is collaborating more often, increasingly mobile, and working on a schedule that enables us to connect more virtually..
Thoughtful leaders working in SAP solution environments step back and ensure that SAP Collaboration represents how the business works both in the short-term and going forward.
When SAP and Microsoft announced they are building integrations to Microsoft Teams across solutions many of us were inspired. With the new reality of remote and hybrid work, the importance of holistic collaboration grows in importance.
Disparate information kept in silos and organized in ad-hoc ways becomes an impediment to performance and productivity. One of the hardest things to do is to keep Microsoft Teams and SharePoint along with the SAP portfolio organized so that the content is valuable to the users.
In order to elevate digital transformation, organizations must rethink how they address: – Working Remotely – Upskilling Employees – Telling Customer Stories – Deploying Communications – Enabling Digital Supply Chains – Re-positioning Products or Services – Building Consortiums & Affinity Groups – Ensuring Regulatory Compliance & Safety – Developing Content & Information Architecture – Increasing Demand Generation and Growing the Pipeline – Scaling Revenue Objectives and Sales Operations Imperatives
Remove the Barriers by Collaborating and Enabling Knowledge Sharing
One of many examples exists between customers and sales, with key contributors including marketing, product teams, communications, pre-sales, and related key stakeholders.
For Industry 4.0, collaboration represents a core component successful business outcomes. The challenge is to recognize the need to optimize the information architecture and user experience, with a ONE CLICK goal to help users quickly gain access to the right information at the right time.
Here’s an interesting Account Executive example…
WSS can help you pinpoint which SAP Collaboration approach is best for your organization, and develop a Quick Start program to ensure rapid results and a longer term plan for continuity and success.
Now is a great time to pursue that high quality job that puts technology and related business skills and interests into action.
The tech sector’s long-term outlook continues to grow with many compelling career opportunities both now and into the future.
With the demand for reliable, skilled business and IT workers on the rise, now’s the time to write down your vision of a great position and set a path forward.
Unquestionably, SAP is one of the best career options. With over 105,000 employees, 22,000 partners, and a customer base generating 87% of total global commerce in over 180 countries, there are many opportunities.
Of course, there is competition for the best jobs, and you want to be prepared to get traction versus settling for just any position. So, what’s the best approach?
The SAP Community, with over 3 million users, recently published Spotlight Interviews with SAP Mentors who are top influencers representing customers, partners, and consultants.
In their interviews, the Community team asked the Mentors for their advice and insights for students and recent graduates to secure SAP and related IT and business jobs to help jumpstart their careers.
Top 7 SAP Mentor Insights
1. Learning is the “Secret Sauce”
Paul Hardy: My advice to young people just starting out in IT is a “secret sauce” which is not so secret. It’s simply this – take a little time each week outside of work to learn new things. If you spend even half an hour each week, you will be half an hour up on all the people who just play computer games or watch Netflix in their spare time.
Narasimha (Simha) Magal – The core advise is always the same: Technologies change constantly, so students must be lifelong learners. However, knowledge of how a technology works is never sufficient. What is critical is to understand why a particular technology is useful to an organization and be able to use the technologies to improve business processes.
Karen Rodrigues:First, improve skills as needed and fill gaps you have in relation to the new area you want to work in. Also, make sure you have a mentor, a person who can support you in this journey. Finally, make sure you understand that you will need to work hard to achieve what you want.
2. Build a Network
Peter Langner: Take the chance to build a network during your studies. Look for educational opportunities around your interests. Regarding SAP, there are training and certification possibilities for students which cost very little money. Take advantage of openSAP courses, visit SAP Community Inside Track events, and connect with experts and experienced professionals. Find a coach or advisor by looking out for them at a user group of your country.
Derek Loranca: Networking is still key, so finding and participating in community-centric data events (like hackathons or user group meetings) allows students to meet and greet with professionals.
3. Find Mentors and Coaches
Heather Hill: Don’t be afraid to ask for help along the way. Mentors and coaches can help you grow not only your technical skills but your soft skills as well.
4. Hands on Experience is Key
Abdulbasit Gulsen: I can assure that making a small effort in the beginning to get hands on experience, will make a big difference and positively impact your career journey.
5. A Balance Between Humanity and Technology Creates Opportunity
Robert Eijpe: The possibilities with technology in the digital age are moving fast. There needs to become a new balance between humanity on one side, and intelligence, machinery, and artificial intelligence on the other side.
6. The Need for Integration
Daniel Graversen: There will always be a need for integration because more systems will always pop up. I talk to a lot of people about ABAP (Advanced Business Application Programming), SAP integration, and business process career opportunities.
7. Be Curious. Have a Great Attitude.
Tamas Szirtes: It’s about being curious, passionate, building a habit to learn and share, going the extra mile, and selecting a matching career strategy.
Graham Robinson: First, you need to be curious – and act on it. Second, you need to be a true professional. That means properly learning and constantly improving your skills. It also means acting professionally and with integrity.
Simon To: I have always advised new graduates to focus on or to develop quality problem-solving skills. That is the most sought-after skillset. The CEO of one of my previous employers has told us this: “Hire for Attitude and Train for Skill.” That is so true.
What inspires you when you think about SAP and related careers?
Many organizations are assessing the best ways to address digital transformation holistically.
SAP and Capgemini are teaming with customers around the globe as trusted partners, to go beyond technical migration, and address intelligent business processes and new business models as part of the RISE with SAP initiative.
Capgemini’s Renewable Enterprise with SAP S/4HANA approach which is designed to put the user experience at the center. It uses modern approaches such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and embedded analytics, DevOps, Cloud architecture, APIs and Microservices to help organizations reimagine themselves, unlock business value, and outpace competition.
Recently I had the pleasure to meet David Lowson, Capgemini’s head of SAP Center of Excellence (COE) Europe, to learn more about his journey and views related to RISE with SAP and the digital core.
Philippe Schmitt SAP Strategic Global Alliances – EMEA North
David Lowson Capgemini, SAP CoE Europe
Philippe Schmitt (PS):What inspired you to get into the field of consulting and high tech?
David Lowson (DL): When I worked in high-tech, I found I was a very poor engineer so when I had an opportunity to work on an enterprise resource planning (ERP) project, I took it. This experience proved I was quite good at this kind of work and is why I made the move to consultancy.
PS:In your blog Consumer Intelligence Products and Retail Therapy, you shared, “As countries around the world reopen, we observe four priority themes emerging with consumer products: sustainability, digitalization, efficiency, diversification.” How does the RISE with SAP initiative enable these themes based on Capgemini’s expertise? DL: RISE with SAP reinforces many of the messages we have been giving to the market about the renewable enterprise, a standard core, savvy use of a cloud infrastructure and application program interface (API) led architectures. These features have been provoking more activity in the market and shifting SAP to be a platform for digital transformation.
PS:You presented at the SAP Global Partner Summit and shared that you, “believe SAP needed to launch the RISE initiative to remain relative for digital transformation for the next 25 years.” What makes this initiative so impactful to the success of customers?
DL: SAP and Capgemini are in position to address business process redesign, technical migration, and building the intelligent enterprise in one package to simplifies customers’ journey. By focusing on innovation and differentiation taking place in the SAP Business Technology Platform surrounding it, the RISE initiative is a clear statement of the importance of providing accelerated business outcomes with integration, data to value, and extensibility. It opens the door to exciting new consumption models.
PS:You’ve recently commented that the market has responded positively to RISE with SAP. Can you share one or two examples of this positive reaction from Capgemini customers?
DL: As you can appreciate, I can only speak of overall projects vs. individual projects. We have started RISE based projects all over the world. With the use of the RISE model, I have seen customers become more confident that we can deliver and provide a standard core, as well as an architecture that does not build technical debt.
PS:When Capgemini refers to the Renewable Enterprise with SAP S/4HANA, it refers to the “S Curve of Innovation” and Intelligent Technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Internet of Things, Block Chain, and the Customer Experience power by data and driven by people. What are one or two examples of how customers are adopting these intelligent technologies to support their customers and keep a competitive advantage?
DL: There are so many user cases, and we keep a library of them available for our clients and partners to access. They are also published every week by our innovation leader, Alex Bulat, Chief Technology & Innovation Officer of Global SAP Business, but the two I would pick out are:
Servitisation – Where clients move from selling products to selling services. Think of a connected car or washing as a service; this is a perfect solution for the new away of thinking. Multiple products orchestrated to deliver new digital businesses that flex as the market develops.
Sustainability – So many of our large engagements are driven by this concept, especially the desire to operate in new, low carbon markets. This requires greater connectivity, artificial intelligence (AI), use of data and a fast-agile core.
PS: When students and recent graduates contact you for informational insights what guidance do you give for them to pursue a career in consulting and high tech?
DL: I see SAP consulting as a three-legged stool:
Be nice and have good people skills
Know about the industry you’re working in
Learn about SAP products and solutions
A company like Capgemini can provide the third bullet, but the other two can be done on your own. Also, read business papers and the SAP website at least once a week. Do a bit more to engage with and understand the direction of the company and products that stand out.
Thank you for sharing comments on the Renewable Enterprise, Digital Transformation, or advanced Intelligent Technologies.
The SAP Mentor Spotlight Series highlights key strategic topics, such as learning, and provides insights from Mentors and SAP leaders on turning ideas into innovative approaches that impact people, process, and technology.
Empowering Transformative Outcomes Through Continuous Learning
Staying on the cutting-edge during times of change is more important than ever. One of the keys to success is the lifelong pursuit of knowledge and learning.
As business, technology, and user experiences change, there are a wide range of ways to continually refresh existing skills, acquire new ones, and evolve new ways to think about business and IT challenges.
To reflect on how to take advantage of SAP and SAP Community learning resources, Max Wessel, EVP & Chief Learning Officer at SAP, caught up with Tammy Powlas, Senior Business Analyst at Fairfax Water and SAP Mentor, to discuss what role learning has played in her life, and how she has furthered her knowledge through the SAP Community.
During their session they discussed:
Enabling learning, whether experiential on the job, or formal learning to help one progress in their career.
Adapting to many changes given the realities of the last year to address digital transformation and embrace the importance of continuous learning.
Pressing one’s skills; pushing forward to take expertise to the next level.
Turning to the SAP community to get inspired and engage in peer-to-peer learning.
Assessing RISE with SAP and how members of the SAP Community can keep their digital transformation initiatives moving forward.
As Max shared during the session, “When driving transformation, the more value we bring to the table, the more guidance we can deliver that helps people step forward, the better it is for all of us.”
SAP and the SAP Community provide many learning resources to support building knowledge, driving innovation, and staying agile.
How do you learn? Let us know in the comments below!
Almost every CEO and their leadership teams are attempting to figure out how to make their business more efficient during the COVID-era which is a big pivot from business as usual.
When we look back at the 2008 global recession there were many lessons learned.
In 2020 and beyond, this pandemic has even greater impact to employees, customers, suppliers, and partners.
Everyone is affected around the world. Collaborating is more important than ever. Working remotely is our new reality both now and by way of preparedness going forward.
Many key priorities are impacted including:
Upskilling and Learning Hubs
Digital Supply Chain
Re-positioning Products & Services
Regulatory Compliance & Safety
And other important use cases
What we are seeing is that CEOs and their teams should take the time during this crisis to sow the seeds for lasting change by assessing how SAP Jam can be part of their immediate and future readiness roadmap to support business continuity.
Many high priority business processes, use cases and/or scenarios are fragmented. With SAP Jam, organizations can have a central hub to make it easier for users to find the right information at the right time.
Solutions such as video conferencing, instant messaging and team-based chat do not solve the challenge of providing a platform to collaborate, engage, re-train staff and enable the business process that impact value and tangible outcomes.
16% decrease in time-to-access of information and expertise
19% reduction in the cost and time to train and onboard new employees who need key information
14% faster time-to-resolution for internal team support issues and FAQs enabling faster expansion of the business
10% reduction in time to close deals by providing go-to-market and supporting wins as part of the sales process shaving off time across all team members involved in deal development
For those organizations who were part of this study (& others) information, data, and expertise which was once siloed and difficult to access and share widely across the enterprise, can now be found and put into action by way of a centralized collaboration platform.
During a pandemic there is a lot of uncertainty. Organizations’ ability to share ideas and connect, communicate, collaborate, and engage employees, customers, and stakeholders with the right information and processes is more important than ever.
In an era where we’re all forced to transform to a “new normal,” SAP Jam collaboration helps customers address business continuity during this time of change.
About the Author
Richard D. Blumberg is the President of World Sales Solutions, LLC (WSS) and an SAP Jam consulting services practice leader. He provides over 2 decades of thought leadership on a variety of “View from the Top” strategies including: Enterprise Social Business, Go-to-Market Strategies, Business Development, Talent Development, and Community Building. He and his team are recognized SAP Jam global experts for implementations, innovation, and adoption.
When deploying SAP Jam and related SAP HR/Learning solutions, there is a great need for design solutions that are positioned to support business processes and add value to the user’s experience.
The challenge is to create high-quality graphic designs that turn ideas and missions into visuals that engage and excite employees, customers, partners, and other stakeholders, while also optimizing the business objective.
According to a recent McKinsey Quarterly study, “The Business Value of Design,” companies that address all four of the following design priorities are rare, but those that have, reported increased revenues and total stakeholders returns compared to their counterparts. These four key elements include:
Analytics – Bringing data to life
Cross-Functional Teams & Talent – Enabling visuals to go beyond the silos of a respective group or organization
Continuous Iteration – Continued review, improvement, maintenance, and testing to optimize the user experience
User Experience – Design a seamless user experience that adds value to their business requirements
In order to achieve the best user experience, designers must be closely aligned with a project’s business leaders and subject matter experts to ensure they understand the mission and design with purpose.
Assessment of the Design-Driven Maturity Curve
Purpose-driven design should be an integral part of a project’s strategy from day one. In today’s increasingly digital world, users have come to expect an interface that is both attractive and easy to use.
There are many corporate tools at our fingertips to satisfy this expectation such as company libraries of images, icons, videos, font guidelines, etc., which should be leveraged to develop standards, repeatable processes, and efficiencies. Still, it is highly recommended that a project’s core team includes a design professional who understands how to maximize the benefits of available design elements.
Setting high-quality standards, per the “Design-Driven Maturity Curve,” sends a message to your audience that a SAP Jam custom home page or group landing page is valuable, credible, properly maintained, and well thought out.
What is the SAP Jam Design Value?
Throughout a project’s development, it is important to recognize design as a priority versus as an afterthought. The most forward-thinking organizations will strive to make it a substantive part of their activities because they see the value of design at both a strategic and tactical level.
Designing an intuitive user experience will increase efficiencies and generate higher value by enabling site visitors to quickly navigate the interface and find essential information, therefore optimizing businesses processes.At the same time, the interface must maintain the organization’s brand and messaging throughout the experience.
While a high-quality UI (User Interface) fulfills a user’s wants by delivering an attractive digital environment, an excellent UX (User Experience) fulfills their needs by allowing them to efficiently complete the task they set out to do quickly and with ease.
The Delivery Methodology for Optimizing Design Elements
When building a new digital learning community, group, or site, it is vital that the delivery methodology has user testing baked in to the team’s approach from the start (“Initiate” and “Assess”) to finish (“Deploy,” “Post-go-live,” and “Adoption”). Taking an agile approach allows project leaders to incorporate users’ feedback throughout development in order to create the best user experience possible.
Incorporating a Purpose-Driven Design Approach
Business process mapping enables teams to understand the project requirements and objectives before developing the interface design.
When key participants come and go from the project, there should be guidelines in place, by way of standardization, procedures, and protocols, that can be leveraged while still maintaining the team’s ability to be creative.
Organizations and teams that prioritize design addressing the four key elements discussed (Analytics, Cross-Functional Teams & Talent, Continuous Iteration, and User Experience) as a core part of their strategy outperform groups that take a more ad-hoc or even intermediate design level approach.
A purpose-driven design combined with the proper delivery methodology streamlines organization operations, which allow business leaders, subject matter experts, and contributors to focus on creating high-quality content, boosting productivity, and providing a consistent, impactful user experience.
“4 key stats on the importance of design for business.” Adobe Blogs. Harmer, Tony. October 2015.
“The Business Value of Design.” McKinsey & Company. Sheppard, Benedict; Sarrazin, Hugo; Kouyoumjian, Garen; Dore, Fabricio. October 2018.
“The Value of Design.” Design Management Institute.
Posted by WSS on February 10, 2020 | Comments Off on SAP Jam for social onboarding: How to Improve First Impressions for New Hires?
As an employer do you want to leave the early impressions of your organization to chance?
The day a new employee is hired it’s an exciting time. Do you want them to rely on a Google search, Glassdoor, Social Media, and/or disparate information for them to learn more about your organization or their new department?
“Best-in-Class companies are 2.5 times more likely than all others to provide key stakeholders with visibility into the development progress of new employees through the onboarding process.”
“58% of all companies indicate that the biggest influence on onboarding efforts is the need to engage new hires in the company culture.”
“Since 90% of employees make the decision to stay within the first year, it’s more important than ever to determine if new hires are engaged early on.”
When looking at the life cycle of an employee from prehire, new hire, and cross-hire… to becoming a productive employee, it’s important to enable a positive experience, engage, and help reduce the dropout rate.
External SAP Jam Group – For new hires they can be invited into an external Jam group with a focus to gaining access to company wide and department specific prehire information (i.e. videos, welcome ambassadors / experts, check lists, what to expect Day 1, etc.)
Account Conversion – Once the new hire joins, Day 1, their prehire account can be converted to a full access SAP Jam user account allowing them to keep their existing information and expand into company wide access
Dynamic Member Lists – New employees based on their start date can automatically become a member of a new hire Jam group which addresses both company-wide and departmental new hire considerations (i.e. stay in the group for 100 days)
Complimentary Platforms & Apps – Align SAP Jam to recruiting, onboarding, learning, Fiori, and related HCM business processes and tools leveraging a common user management experience with SAP Foundation (aka – BizX) to enable the employee system of record
The Role of HR and Business Leadership
An organization’s Chief People &/or Talent Officer and their team play a big role as internal consultants within the organization to step back and assess if prehires, new hires, and cross-team hires are getting the best experience and optimizing their productivity?
A check list to consider:
First Impressions – Has the organization taken the time to optimize the first impressions to the new employees?
Knowledge – Do pre- and new hires have clarity on the value, culture, opportunities, and expectations for their new role?
Engage – Are pre- and new hires being engaged in a timely manner with the best knowledge and information available to equip them for success?
Who are the experts and ambassadors who can share their experiences / insights?
BusyManagers – While the business leads from the respective departments (“business units”) are very, very busy, have they provided what’s needed for pre- & new hires to be productive?
When was the last time the business addressed how long the boarding process takes and the process for efficiency?
Compliance – Do the pre- and new hires have the information they need to address compliance (i.e. privacy, confidentiality, and related industry compliance requirements)?
Strategy – Is onboarding viewed as a strategic initiative to your organization with ongoing reviews to keep the information fresh & current and use the best tools available?
What can the Chief HR and Talent Officer address?
With digital transformation new employees expect social onboarding tools to facilitate their new hire experience. For recent graduates (“Next-Gen”) who have grown up with cell phones and social media it’s important for a business to put it’s best foot forward in the hiring process using modern tools and capabilities.
When left to ad-hoc approaches it’s proven that satisfaction levels can go down, and the drop out rate increases, which costs both time and money for all participants in the hiring process.
The Chief HR and Talent Officer and their team should develop approaches (“frameworks”) that make it easier for lines of business within the organization to address the business requirements to optimize the ramp up period… and bring on happy successful new employees… and as result, achieve higher levels of productivity, successful outcomes, and satisfaction.
Based on many SAP Jam experiences, it is often best for the business lead and their core team to focus on the business requirements and stakeholder input, and then work with SAP Jam implementation & adoption services experts to ensure that the platform is optimized and best practices are in place.
First day impressions are very important.
By stepping back… and looking at the best processes, key information, and approach… organizations can optimize what happens before, during, and after the first day on the job to develop talent and positively impact bottom-line results.
Posted by WSS on November 26, 2017 | Comments Off on Hong Kong: The Sites, Landmarks & Destiny
After an awesome week in Hong Kong, during our ride back to the airport the driver said, “when you arrived you saw Hong Kong as a pin on the map” and I added “and now it’s a magnifying glass with a big spotlight!”
What my wife and I found was a fast moving, bright light, vibrant, safe, friendly city with a surrounding region of country trails and rolling mountains. In fact we enjoyed it so much that we walked 9-10 miles each day to see as much as possible!
What brought us to Hong Kong?
Our son Steven is a Drexel University study abroad student at the University of Hong Kong and having a great experience. He was a perfect tour guide pinpointing many great sites, landmarks, restaurants, and less traveled fun places to check out. Also, for 3 days he was selected to spend time shadowing the CEO of the top global publication, the South China Morning Post, (on par with the Washington Post / NY Times) which was an amazing opportunity so between this experience and his classes we had some time to explore.
Our first lesson was how to use the MTR system (aka – subways, trains, metro)… Very quickly we learned about the blue, red, green and orange lines and main attractions like…
Wan Chai (灣仔) one of the busiest commercial areas in Hong Kong and the closest stop to our hotel
Tung Chung (東涌) meaning ‘eastern stream’, formerly a rural and fishing village and now the gateway to Ngong Ping’s Big Buddha, the world’s largest seated outdoor bronze Buddha statue and Po Lin Monastery
And of course these lessons allowed us to travel by MTR to the Hong Kong Disneyland Resort which had popular attractions like “it’s a small world,” “Disneyland Railroad” and “Jungle River Cruise” as well as unique ones only found in Hong Kong including “Mystic Manor” and “Iron Man Experience.”
Interestingly the short ride to the resort had a custom Disney metro car with Mickey Mouse windows and a custom interior with blue lined seats, Minnie statues, and hand holders in the shape of Mickey.
Other memorable sites included:
Victoria Peak – The highest mountain on Hong Kong island with amazing views
Chi Lin Nunnery (志蓮淨苑) – Constructed entirely with cypress wood, without the use of any nails and is the world’s largest hand-made wooden building
OZONE – One of the highest rooftop sky bars in the world, located on the 118th floor of The Ritz-Carlton)
Tung Choi Street (通菜街) is a well-known street market popularly known as “Ladies’ Market” where you walk through stalls and shops to find deals
Historically it was interesting to think back to when “Made in Hong Kong” was very popular (back in the day!) to the ancient farming and fishing villages — to today where Hong Kong has evolved into a major port and international financial center with more global brands and shopping malls then we have ever seen per square block.
In fact, our hotel, the Grand Hyatt was right next to the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre where the transfer of sovereignty over Hong Kong from the United Kingdom to the People’s Republic of China took place in 1997.
As we walked around Hong Kong you realize it’s always on the move… hustling and bustling… the MTRs are clean (we once saw a glass of water or soda spilled and it was cleaned within minutes). Rarely did we have to wait for the MTR more then 2 or 3 minutes… and the people are friendly and peaceful. The streets and malls are alive and busy into the night.
Interestingly we learned that every Sunday maids from Indonesia and the Philippines gather together and take a government required day off where they play cards, picnic, style hair, and socialize.
Perhaps when it was all said and done we realized how valuable the experience was for us.
To gain perspective about Hong Kong, China, and Asia is very worthwhile. Whether for business or vacation we would highly recommend taking time to get to know Hong Kong.
In fact, like so many places I have visited there will always be a part of us in Hong Kong and as the news takes place and others share their stories my interest will be sky high to learn more and share insights.
Who knows? Perhaps our new friend who we met at the HKU Alumni Affairs Office said it best… Sometimes “who we meet” and “when we meet” is simply “Destiny!” (see symbol on right) and it seemed like finally getting to Hong Kong was our destiny which will live on as a priceless memory for a lifetime.
Appendix – Photo Gallery
Chi Lin Nunnery
Hong Kong Heritage Museum – “Bruce Lee – Kung Fu * Art * Life” exhibit
Hong Kong Disneyland Resort – MTR (Custom Train)
View from OZONE
Ngong Ping’s Big Buddha
Grand Hyatt Hotel
View from Victoria Peak
Victoria Peak Hiking Trail – Pok Fu Lam Country Park