Last week, the Sweetlets team went to the German SAP User Group Annual Conference (DSAG Jahreskongress) in Leipzig, Germany, along with nearly 4000 visitors. At the Sweetlets booth, visitors could see demonstrations of Click Stream in the cloud and on HANA, as well as other portal tools from the Sweetlets product range.
It was great opportunity to catch up with our Sweetlets customers, who made an extra effort to stop by and see us – it is always an honor for us, as well as a confirmation of the quality of our products.
Of course, in talking with partners and customers, attending presentations and visiting workshops, we were able to get a good overview of SAP trends and how businesses are responding to or adopting them.
“Customer First – in search of future directions and sustainability”
The topic at large for this year’s conference focused on customer and end-user needs and, on a larger scale, how companies cope with the continual stream of innovative new technologies, such as cloud and the HANA platform. The keynote speakers, Marco Lenck (DSAG Chairman) and Bernd Leukert (member of the Executive Board and the Global Managing Board of SAP), both addressed this issue.
Do SAP customers readily adopt these new developments in their own infrastructure, or do they tend to be reluctant? While the SAP HANA platform and SAP HANA Cloud Portal have been steadily establishing themselves in the SAP community, SAP has been growing its cloud portfolio with acquisitions of companies like SuccessFactors, specializing in cloud-based human capital management (HCM) solutions, and Hybris, experts in cloud-based and on-premise e-commerce technology. DSAG decided it was time to check in with SAP customers to see what they thought of these new innovations and developments. In a survey carried out by the DSAG a few months ago, responses revealed a cautious optimism – businesses are intrigued by new technology but do not want to jump immediately on the bandwagon for each new development, only to discover that it was merely a trend. They prefer to assess what their organizations really need and want to be able to pick and choose the solutions to meet their needs.
In talking with our customers, the Sweetlets team sensed that businesses were, at best, undecided about adopting the new technology for their organizations, but they were at least willing to try out hybrid solutions, where, for example, a large portion of the ERP system would remain in place and on-premise, while specific functions would be deployed to the cloud. This idea of going hybrid reflected the response to the DSAG survey – companies are cautious about actually implementing new innovations and prefer to try them out on a smaller scale first.
Even on the trade show floor, the Sweetlets team could see that among the companies represented, among all the organizations on top of the latest developments, there were still plenty of businesses offering services for R/2 and R/3. Apparently, there is still demand for expertise in this area, if not to maintain existing systems, then to develop interfaces from the older systems to newer systems. Part of the hesitation to move to newer systems or platforms like HANA or ERP on the cloud has to do with questions of security. We went to a session on SAP Enterprise Threat Detection v 1.0 and SAP is obviously trying to address these concerns.
Fire and ice
You could watch artists create ice sculptures, and even try it out yourself. In a separate area, a group of performance artists captured the flow and flickering of wind and fire with their dramatically long scarves.
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