At the beginning of May, as is customary every year since 2016, we traveled with the GeneXus team to SAP’s #SAPPHIRE conference. It’s an impressive event, on an incredibly large area that features endless galleries with stands, multiple stages, countless meeting rooms and representatives from the world’s most relevant companies. Undoubtedly, it was the ideal place to talk about the advantages of GeneXus for SAP Systems, considering that SAP had announced that they expected up to 30,000 visitors. With this crowd we shared excellent talks about the future of “intelligent enterprises,” and concepts such as “experience economy,” “service design,” and “customer experience” that gave a new value to the great work we do with GeneXus for this market.
A short time ago, SAP acquired Qualtrics, a company focused on experience management. This largely explains why “Experience” was the key idea behind many of the most important presentations made at Sapphire (and the title of this article).
Experience 1: Delivering the intelligent enterprise in the experience economy.
“Change a feeling, change a business. Change a business, change the world,” is a great phrase I heard during the presentation of SAP CEO Bill McDermott in this first keynote, in which he discussed the intelligent enterprise and the business advantages obtained together with the Experience Economy.
Disruption, he said, lies in the ability to bridge the gap between what is offered in the market and what the user really wants. Those who best solve this problem, by improving their users’ experience, will earn the most in the market.
“Experience is now the organizing principle of the global economy,” said McDermott.
In addition, Qualtrics CEO Ryan Smith explained how experience management (XM) -led by his company- was in line with SAP’s vision for the future of enterprise software: “With the rise of the Internet, smartphones and social networks, it’s never been easier for customers, employees, and stakeholders to evaluate which companies are actually providing great experiences and which ones don’t. Today, organizations are disproportionately rewarded when they deliver a great experience and absolutely punished when they do not… For the first time in history, experience has become the growth engine for business.”
According to Smith, experience management (XM) would be the best way for organizations to compete and win in this economy.
Experience 2: The customer experience and intelligent business strategy that is solved in one equation.
Businesses across industries are discovering the power of the customer experience and the danger of ignoring it. Great experiences don’t happen in a vacuum. From employee engagement to supply chain management, everything has the potential to impact the customer or end user. It is a complex equation that requires businesses to connect the dots between their experience data (X) and operational data (O) to provide an unparalleled end-to-end experience.
An intelligent enterprise strategy enables brands to solve the equation by turning data into intelligence, automating processes, and driving innovation. Not only to make better decisions with real-time data, but also to predict future outcomes based on operational data (the “what”) married with experience data (the “why”).
SAP wants to solve this equation with the right combination of X’s and O’s, to help companies to become the most Intelligent Enterprises of the future.
This note of América Economía says it very well: integrate the economy of experience -sensations, beliefs, emotions- with the operational data of the companies and thus to impact the business.
Experience 3: Announcement of SAP Data Intelligence
Something that we liked very much because it is very favorable for GeneXus, is the announcement that SAP is joining tools they already had for data management with other open source tools (Jupiter Notebooks, Tensorflow, etc.), to create a web IDE that allows Data Scientists to easily train Machine Learning models. This work method enables them to create training and retraining flows for Machine Learning models with a simplicity that did not exist before.
This was announced with a new name: SAP Data Intelligence and it is the area in which GeneXus is working on a Co-Innovation Project with SAP.
Experience 4: SAP HANA for Everyone with SAP Data Warehouse Cloud
Hasso Plattner, SAP Co-Founder, announced in his keynote that they already have all their products running on HANA and that, even though it took them longer than he wanted, today they’re all on the same pillar.
Another announcement made at Hasso’s keynote was that BW (the original Business Objects BI tools) would be tied with the data analysis products over HANA that gave way to SAP Data Warehouse Cloud. This Forbes article contains more detailed information about SAP Data Warehouse Cloud.
“There is somehow this conception that SAP HANA is only for large enterprises and complex scenarios. HANA is for everyone!” affirmed Kazmaier (SVP, SAP).
McDermott ended his opening keynote by urging the audience to understand that experience is everything, and that the intelligent enterprise connects each business process to experiences.
Lastly, I wonder, What experience can we help SAP with and how may we assist them in “Delivering the intelligent enterprise in the experience economy”? Surely by Simplifying the integration and extension of SAP systems with GeneXus for SAP Systems.
For SAP customers, there is a big difference between the speed of adoption of the new SAP technologies they want and the speed of adoption they can actually achieve in practice. This experience “gap,” the difference between the desired speed and the speed they actually achieve, is what I firmly believe GeneXus for SAP Systems can solve in an unparalleled way. Once the Co-Innovation project is complete, we’ll have a big announcement to make…
See you next year, Sapphire!