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How Robots are Changing the Business of Toilet Paper and Diapers

Mon, 04/23/2018 - 12:15
In spite of all the changes brought on by digital technology, humans are essentially analog creatures. For evidence look no further than the consumption of toilet paper and diapers.

And while they are readily available and affordable in developed countries, that’s not always the case in the developing world. More than 2 billion people around the globe have no access to improved sanitation and basic hygiene products while another 800 million lack regular access to clean water.

What’s This About?

One way to address that disparity is to produce, sell, and distribute toilet paper and diapers more efficiently so that they’re both available and affordable to everyone. At Essity AB, Sweden’s leading producer of hygiene and health products and solutions, that challenge has fallen to experts like Robert Sjöström, senior vice president of Strategy and Business Development. The answers lie in the digital world.

At the recent ThinkX event in Stockholm co-sponsored by SAP and Singularity University, Sjöström described how Essity is automating its factories with AI-driven technology to enable waste reduction, use less energy, improve quality, and reduce costs by rethinking how human workers impact the production process.

“Digitalization will impact the entire company, and we expect to develop our employees to perform other tasks,” he said. “We’re using robotics to optimize processes and to eliminate as much manual work as possible.”

Let’s not forget that machines were not invented to lighten the load of laborers but to increase output and value. In fact, toilet paper factories are already completely automated. While human beings may oversee the production line, they are largely removed from the operation. From the first stage to the last, toilet paper is made by a series of ingenious machines strung together by a system of conveyors.

But today it’s not enough to just create value through growth. Today, value must be sustainable over time.

Why It Matters

“We create business value by meeting society’s most basic needs,” Sjöström says. “But the way we produce paper has not changed for hundreds of years.”

Wood chips are still processed into pulp that’s dried and formed into sheets, a process that hasn’t changed fundamentally since the company was formed. Originally a forest products company with roots in the 1850s, the new name Essity was implemented last year symbolizing essentials that are necessities. The fiber for Essity’s products comes from responsibly managed forests with a respect for biodiversity and fair labor conditions.

“What is changing is how we process materials in a more sustainable way and how we use technology to be more efficient,” Sjöström says.

Such changes require an innovation process that is deeply embedded in a company’s strategy and business model. At Essity, innovation activities are driven by market trends, customer and consumer insight, new technology, and new business models, which all require new skills and mindsets. The role of human workers will shift away from manufacturing and toward running the business.

“We will create new positions in the company such as digital analysts and robotic experts, so we’ll need to recruit more people with strong mathematical and digital capabilities. It’s also very important that our IT people have a better understanding of the business,” says Sjöström. “Management must stop thinking in a linear way about budgets and start thinking about how to train our brains to be more open minded, to better understand data, to be less emotional and more fact based.”

And while it’s true that machines can be more efficient than humans, Sjöström believes the human touch will be more important than ever.

“Our products will continue to be used in a traditional way in homes, but with machines taking care of processes in hospitals, for example, instead of running around looking for supplies or filling out paperwork to maintain stocks of hygiene products, nurses will actually have more time to care for patients at the bedside where it really counts,” he adds.

Good for People, Good for Business

New technologies like machine learning are making it possible to automate routine tasks, which means efficiency will no longer be a differentiator. What will make a difference to the long-term relevance of a company is its reason for being. It’s no coincidence that Essity has made it a mission to improve health and well-being through personal and professional hygiene solutions in full alignment with the global United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Essity’s rigorous commitment to the SDGs means it aims to improve the well-being of people all over the world and create business opportunities as well. For example, Essity is helping to stop the spread of disease with hand washing programs in schools and to break taboos about menstruation and incontinence in collaboration with organizations like the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC). At the same time, its commitment to sustainable supply chain opens new opportunities for suppliers in all areas from fiber sourcing to water and waste management to climate and energy.

And last, but not least, employees feel good about their work because they understand their role in making the world a better place.

Categories: What's New

Driving Breakthrough Business Outcomes with Data

Mon, 04/23/2018 - 10:15
Previously, I wrote about my transformative experience in building up the global data business for SAP, sharing my personal views on how to bring a startup to laser-focused execution and relentlessly drive customer success.

Data and technology have helped businesses evolve so rapidly that in just the past year, innovative technologies and capabilities such as data science, artificial intelligence, data analytics, and Big Data processing have allowed businesses to benefit from data in ways unimaginable before.

New, innovative technologies have allowed businesses to benefit from data in ways unimaginable before

“Go break through with your data” is my advice to every business. Why? Because data powers competitiveness and growth across industries and business processes. Transactional data augmented with additional data sources generate what I call “new intelligence.”

Take the retail industry for example. Retailers today can connect customers’ e-commerce records with social media activities and hyperlocal data to get the pulse of the neighborhood. Couple this with in-store, point-of-sale data as well as behavioral data from loyalty programs, we end up with an unbeatable, personalized consumer experience.

Now, if you infused the newly gained consumer insights into intelligent assortment and supply chain processes, you would have a smart supply chain that constantly ensures the proper merchandise is in stock. Such a closed-loop value chain, which is driven by edge intelligence on consumer behavior and trend patterns, redefines the rulebook.

The Why: Love the Problem, Not the Technology

The possibilities of technology are incredibly exciting; however, technology is always a means, never an end destination. Lead with strategic direction and be clear on what you are targeting with data-driven innovations.

Ask the following questions: What is the purpose of your digital transformation? Which growth opportunities can be captured through data and will lead your business into the future? Are you looking to gain competitive differentiation or pioneer digital data-driven services to establish a new source of revenue? From supply chain to manufacturing to serving your customer, how much friction is due to dispersed systems that aren’t harmonized and semantically integrated?

The How: Team and Customer Focus

The main challenge for data monetization is building a solid foundation for running a new, scalable and profitable data business. You overcome it by focusing on creating horizontally connected teams and putting customers first. Install small teams at the edge of the organization with a clear vision and strategy that aim to drive rapid business outcomes. Ensure that they’re horizontally connected to include a mix of talented outsiders and forward-thinking corporate veterans, who help keep the bonds with the core business and break down silos between core and edge teams.

In addition, ensure that customer experience is at the forefront of your business. The customer experience must be simple and frictionless despite the underlying complexity, where technology is invisible. We have developed a customer-centric approach using design thinking, a practice that focuses on feedback loops and iterative prototypes.

The What: Execution Strategy

Data-driven innovation does not happen by accident, it requires strategic focus and operational perseverance. Developing data applications is about building smart applications that focus on solving specific business problems, using new data insights to make predictions and prescribe and execute actions. Here are my four suggestions for building data-driven products.

  • Working with data – fairness matters: Reliable and high-quality data is a must-have. When enriched with other data sources and processed using with machine learning algorithms, the value of data increases immensely. Go for the infinite possibilities but temper with a dose of reality. Why? Not all data is created equal and being aware of bias in the data is crucial for understanding the extent of a model’s accuracy and avoiding shortcomings on algorithms and biased models.
  • Think transparency, no black box: Ensure model transparency and that algorithms remain accurate over time, meaning the reasoning behind a decision or recommendation can be explained at any time.
  • Build in circular learning loops: Data-driven applications operate on diverse data sources, combining analytical and operational data to predict and prescribe what to do next by providing transparency and relevant insights in the form of industry benchmarks and peer-to-peer comparisons. Simulation capabilities and recommended actions based on algorithms guide the user in the decision-making process. Incorporate user-generated behavioral data and improve recommendations by correlating interactions back to the source of data to close the loop.
  • Combine data and domain expertise: This is crucial because data-driven applications solve new problems in new ways by connecting the right data in a meaningful and contextualized way. The creation of value becomes much more problem-solving focused, providing solution for industries and for horizontal business functions like human resources, sales or finance. Use your domain expertise to find what problem to solve and let the data lead to new insights and signals. The best algorithms are the ones based on contextualized domain knowledge on processes in combination with data and behavior.

Get your data to drive breakthrough business outcomes. Stay tuned for my next piece on discovering how data transforms the bimodal world of IT.

Helen Arnold is president of the SAP Data Network.
Follow Helen on Twitter: @arnold_ih, #SAPDataNetwork.

Categories: What's New

SAP Introduces SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud

Mon, 04/23/2018 - 04:00
HANNOVER — SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) today introduced the release of SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud, a new solution to help companies optimize performance, elevate production quality and efficiency, and ensure worker safety.

Drawing on SAP’s expertise in the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), predictive analytics and supply networks, the solution enables manufacturers to deploy Industry 4.0 technologies in the cloud. The announcement was made at Hannover Messe 2018, being held April 23–27 in Hannover, Germany.

The new cloud solution extends and complements the digital manufacturing portfolio of on-premise solutions from SAP and is available in different bundles to serve manufacturers of varying sizes in both discrete and process industries and roles within their respective organizations.

SAP customers can choose from the SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud solution for execution, which provides all solutions in the manufacturing cloud portfolio, or the SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud solution for insights, which focuses on performance management and predictive quality.

“Manufacturers in the era of Industry 4.0 require solutions that are intelligent, networked and predictive,” said Bernd Leukert, ember of the Executive Board of SAP SE, Products & Innovation. “Our manufacturing cloud solutions help customers take advantage of the Industrial Internet of Things by connecting equipment, people and operations across the extended digital supply chain and tightly integrating manufacturing with business operations.”

SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud includes the following:

  • SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud for execution: Industry0-enabled shop floor solution features “lot size one” and paperless production capabilities. It integrates business systems with the shop floor, allowing for complete component and material-level visibility for single and global installations.
  • SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud for insights: Centralized, data-driven performance management enables key stakeholders to achieve best-in-class manufacturing performance and operations.
  • Predictive quality: This helps manufacturers gain valuable insights to conform to specifications across processes and streamline quality management. It also allows manufacturers to apply predictive algorithms that can reduce losses from defects, deficiencies or variations, and recommend corrective actions.
  • Manufacturing network: The network provides a cloud-based collaborative platform integrated with SAP Ariba solutions connecting customers with manufacturing service providers, such as suppliers of 3D and computer numerical control (CNC) printing services, material providers, original equipment manufacturers (OEM) and technical certification companies. (See companion SAP Ariba solution announcement here.)

Also at Hannover Messe 2018, SAP announced SAP Connected Worker Safety, a solution designed to reduce risks, costs and protect employees. Information from wearables and other sensor-enabled equipment can help companies react immediately to a hazardous situation or incident while proactively managing worker fatigue and other hazard inducers. Real-time information allows monitoring of compliance at all times against regulatory and other parameters. For more information, see the related story.

Availability of the solutions is expected by the end of the second quarter of 2018.

More information on digital manufacturing solutions from SAP is available here.

Visit the SAP News Center. Follow SAP on Twitter at @sapnews.

About SAP

As market leader in enterprise application software, SAP (NYSE: SAP) helps companies of all sizes and industries run better. From back office to boardroom, warehouse to storefront, desktop to mobile device – SAP empowers people and organizations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively to stay ahead of the competition. SAP applications and services enable more than 378,000 business and public sector customers to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and grow sustainably. For more information, visit www.sap.com.

Note to editors:
To preview and download broadcast-standard stock footage and press photos digitally, please visit www.sap.com/photos. On this platform, you can find high resolution material for your media channels. To view video stories on diverse topics, visit www.sap-tv.com. From this site, you can embed videos into your own Web pages, share video via email links, and subscribe to RSS feeds from SAP TV.

For customers interested in learning more about SAP products:
Global Customer Center: +49 180 534-34-24
United States Only: +1 (800) 872-1727

For more information, press only:
Kathrin Eiermann, +49 6227 767029, simone.kathrin.eiermann@sap.com, CET
Jim Dever, +1 (610) 661-2161, james.dever@sap.com, ET
SAP News Center press room, press@sap.com

Any statements contained in this document that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecast,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “project,” “predict,” “should” and “will” and similar expressions as they relate to SAP are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. SAP undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations. The factors that could affect SAP’s future financial results are discussed more fully in SAP’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), including SAP’s most recent Annual Report on Form 20-F filed with the SEC. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates.
© 2018 SAP SE. All rights reserved.
SAP and other SAP products and services mentioned herein as well as their respective logos are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP SE in Germany and other countries. Please see http://www.sap.com/corporate-en/legal/copyright/index.epx#trademark for additional trademark information and notices.

Categories: What's New

SAP Unveils Intelligent Product Design Solution and Network of Digital Twins

Mon, 04/23/2018 - 04:00
HANNOVER SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) has introduced SAP S/4HANA Cloud for intelligent product design, a new solution for collaborative research and development.

The solution, which is built on SAP Cloud Platform using SAP’s latest digital twin technology, is one of the building blocks for a network of digital twins to enable new business models. The announcement was made at Hannover Messe 2018, being held April 23–27 in Hannover, Germany.

Powered by SAP Leonardo and integrated with business processes in the digital core, SAP S/4HANA Cloud for intelligent product design (see the video) enables customers to accelerate product design and development with requirement-driven systems engineering and instant collaboration across an extended network of suppliers and partners.

“The solution provides shared views of digital twin information for customers to gain live insights on new products and to store, share and review engineering documents with internal and external participants,” said Bernd Leukert, Member of the Executive Board of SAP SE, Products & Innovation. “We continue to introduce innovations to help our customers transform from the core and across the extended digital supply chain.”

SAP’s network of digital twins synchronizes the virtual, physical, conditional and commercial definitions of assets and products in real time to accelerate innovation, optimize operating performance, predict service requirements, improve diagnostics and enhance decision-making. It enables new levels of collaboration among manufacturers of products, operators of assets, suppliers and service companies. The approach combines digital twins with manufacturing solutions from SAP, cloud networks and SAP Leonardo capabilities, including machine learning, blockchain and Internet of Things (IoT), to optimize the product lifecycle with:

  • Digital representation: SAP synchronizes digital twin business data, product information, asset master data and IoT-connected data from both on-premise and cloud solutions enabling companies to represent the world digitally. Solutions including SAP Predictive Engineering Insights, SAP Predictive Maintenance and Service and the SAP 3D Visual Enterprise applications provide access to rich data processing capabilities and live configuration, state, condition and control information.
  • Business process: Rich enterprise-grade data processing capabilities allow customers to create, access and update digital twins to support business processes. SAP solutions provide an integrated data model from design, production and maintenance to service, including packaged integration to existing systems for computer-aided design, ERP, and product lifecycle management. Offerings providing end-to-end process support for manufacturers and operators include SAP S/4HANA, the SAP Engineering Control Center integration tool, SAP Hybris Service Cloud solutions, and the SAP Manufacturing Integration and Intelligence and SAP Manufacturing Execution applications.
  • Business networks: With leading network offerings such as SAP Ariba solutions, SAP Asset Intelligence Network, and the SAP Distributed Manufacturing application, SAP is uniquely positioned to provide a virtual platform for collaboration on products and assets. The network of digital twins enables secure data access, sharing and governance on a global scale.
  • Networks of digital representation: SAP enables twin-to-twin connections in systems within a specific asset and on an asset-to-asset level. SAP solutions such as SAP Asset Intelligence Network provide semantic and industry-standards support in an asset core modeling environment to enable live enrichment during the product or asset lifecycle.

More information on SAP’s digital twin technology is available here.

Visit the SAP News Center. Follow SAP on Twitter at @sapnews.

About SAP

As market leader in enterprise application software, SAP (NYSE: SAP) helps companies of all sizes and industries run better. From back office to boardroom, warehouse to storefront, desktop to mobile device – SAP empowers people and organizations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively to stay ahead of the competition. SAP applications and services enable more than 378,000 business and public sector customers to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and grow sustainably. For more information, visit www.sap.com.

Note to editors:
To preview and download broadcast-standard stock footage and press photos digitally, please visit www.sap.com/photos. On this platform, you can find high resolution material for your media channels. To view video stories on diverse topics, visit www.sap-tv.com. From this site, you can embed videos into your own Web pages, share video via email links, and subscribe to RSS feeds from SAP TV.

For customers interested in learning more about SAP products:
Global Customer Center: +49 180 534-34-24
United States Only: +1 (800) 872-1727

For more information, press only:
Kathrin Eiermann, +49 6227 767029, simone.kathrin.eiermann@sap.com, CET
Jim Dever, +1 (610) 661-2161, james.dever@sap.com, ET
SAP News Center press room, press@sap.com

Any statements contained in this document that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecast,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “project,” “predict,” “should” and “will” and similar expressions as they relate to SAP are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. SAP undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations. The factors that could affect SAP’s future financial results are discussed more fully in SAP’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), including SAP’s most recent Annual Report on Form 20-F filed with the SEC. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates.
© 2018 SAP SE. All rights reserved.
SAP and other SAP products and services mentioned herein as well as their respective logos are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP SE in Germany and other countries. Please see http://www.sap.com/corporate-en/legal/copyright/index.epx#trademark for additional trademark information and notices.

Categories: What's New

When Every Second Counts: Safeguarding Employees with SAP Connected Worker Safety

Mon, 04/23/2018 - 03:59
Instead of reactively getting workers out of hazardous situations, it is now possible to identify the first signs of risk as soon as they arise.

With the Internet of Things (IoT), the SAP Connected Worker Safety solution offers a platform that allows project managers as well as health and safety personnel across industries to access the data collected by various IoT devices in real time.

While in the past it was merely possibly to react to health-threatening incidents at work after they had occurred and do root cause analysis after the fact, at present it has become possible to proactively identify hazards through regulations and risk assessments. SAP Connected Worker Safety enables customers to do the next step–predictive analytics by monitoring workers and environment in real time to identify potential risks at runtime.

IoT Solution to Identify Potential Safety Risks in Real Time

Launched at Hannover Messe 2018, SAP Connected Worker Safety was developed in a co-innovation project for the transportation industry between SAP and NTT in Japan. Key prerequisites to the new solution are IoT sensors collecting data in working environments on both workers–e. g. their heart rates and body temperature–and the environment, such as air quality, temperature, light, and noise. Based on the sensors, the application also raises alarms on incidents, e.g. falls, injuries, dehydration, or fatigue.

The most prominent pain point when it comes to IoT scenarios within worker safety has always been that users had to rely on different platforms to monitor the data from various devices by different manufacturers. This problem has finally been solved by SAP Connected Worker Safety through the introduction of a generic platform that connects all data, wearables, and other IoT devices to be monitored by safety experts in one dashboard.

Due to this real-time integration, it becomes possible to directly analyze the incoming data in order to prevent workers from getting into hazardous situations in the first place.

Versatile IoT Solution for Predictive Analytics

Its versatility makes the solution special: SAP Connected Worker Safety was developed not for a singular industry but to address the needs of any industry where workers can make contact with hazardous materials or encounter dangerous situations apply.

“A classic example is mining,” solution owner Christian Polivka explains. “A very common danger to workers underground is lack of oxygen or blackdamp in the air. Workers used to take canary birds with them because they react very sensitively to changes in the composition of air long before humans start to take notice. Nowadays, IoT sensors send updates on the mixture of gases in the tunnels so it has become possible to constantly monitor all health-relevant components. SAP Connected Worker Safety does the next step by connecting the data to enable health and safety to do predictive analytics on the situation underground, thus making sure that workers won’t get into danger at all.“

Release to customer is planned for later in the second quarter of 2018, planned product enhancements to SAP Connected Worker Safety in 2018 include the output of location-based real-time information to workers, such as historic incident data as well as hazards, controls and personal protective equipment via SAP EHS. Further planned is the integration of SAP SuccesFactors for training and qualification purposes as well as person-related exposure and biometric histories.

Categories: What's New

Beyond Earth Day: Technology’s Role In Helping Businesses Do More With Less

Fri, 04/20/2018 - 11:15
Close to a billion people around the world are getting ready to celebrate Earth Day on April 22. The movement started in 1970, when millions of people marched to protest the impact of industrial development on the environment.

Despite many achievements since then, and almost 2.7 billion “acts of green” registered by the Earth Day network, the need for action is more acute than ever.

As the famed scientist and nobel prize winner Stephen Hawking noted “Our population and our use of the finite resources of planet Earth are growing exponentially, along with our technical ability to change the environment for good or ill.”

We have reason for concern, but also hope. New technologies could be the urgently needed accelerator to address climate change, transition to clean energy and reduce negative environmental impacts – if we apply these wisely as a force for good instead of evil.

While all of us have a role to play in this, businesses like SAP have a unique one due to their reach and power to make a positive impact. We have the responsibility to stand for a higher purpose that goes beyond economic success. For SAP it is to help the world run better and improve people’s lives. Together with our customers and numerous other organizations, we are working to bring this vision and purpose to life and to address the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Let me pick just one example: SDG No. 12 is to ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns. Put simply, this means managing the world’s people and natural resources better and mitigating harm to people and the environment. Isn’t this also what enterprise resource planning should be about?

Why Does This Matter?

The demand of already-constrained and finite resources is expected to rise exponentially: If the global population reaches 9.6 billion by 2050, the equivalent of almost three planets will be required to sustain current lifestyles according to the UN. Business as usual is no option in this scenario. New ways of doing more and better with less are required.

Digital solutions that drive efficiency and resource optimization are already helping to achieve the UN’s call to “increase net welfare gains from economic activities by reducing resource use, degradation and pollution along the whole life cycle, while increasing quality of life.” Companies like Vestas and Kaiserwetter are leveraging SAP technology to enhance access to renewable and affordable energy, while Vectus applies it to conserve precious water in India, for instance.

Take food as another example: each year about one-third of all food produced ends up in the garbage, or spoils due to poor transportation and harvesting practices. That’s equivalent to 1.3 billion tons of food at a value of one trillion USD. Which business or government cannot afford to address this?

Acting as Enabler and Exemplar

For many companies like SAP it starts with leading by example through our own business practices. For example, we have established a sustainable, end-to-end lifecycle management for our IT equipment encompassing sustainable procurement practices, energy efficient operations, and IT re-use and recycling.

However, the scale comes from enabling a base of 378,000 customers through our technology and solutions – those customers produce 76% of the world’s transaction revenue and 78% of the world’s food.

The potential is huge: precision farming solutions as the one for Stara can help to maximize crop yields while minimizing the application of fertilizer, pesticides, water, and other costly resources — and decreasing their environmental impact. Better forecasting of demand through the use of Big Data and next-generation ERP can help deliver perishable foods to the right markets. Our transportation management solutions can help optimize loads and routes to make food products available at the right time with minimal environmental impact. Business network, cloud procurement solutions and the product stewardship network can help retailers like Walmart and consumers get insight into food supply chains and make sustainable buying decisions. And the list goes on.

Are We Done?

Definitely not. We need more purpose-driven innovation and partnerships that connect the dots and enable a truly circular economy in the future. It is not just about responsible sourcing or about recycling – it’s about thinking it the full product lifecycle, from design to end of life. Dame Ellen MacArthur, who holds the record for circumnavigating the world alone, once said: “If we could build an economy that would use things rather than use them up, we could build a future that really could work in the long term.”

This Earth Day, I encourage everyone to step up and be part in shaping this future. As chief sustainability officer at SAP, I will apply all my forces to make SAP an enabler and exemplar for sustainability and for holistic environmental, social and economic value creation. Our CEO Bill McDermott, announced this week that as part of our commitment to address SDG No. 13 “Climate Action” and become carbon neutral by 2025, SAP is teaming up with partners like Livelihoods Fund, Climate Partner, Plant for the Planet, and more, and to plant 5 million new trees in the next seven years all over the world.

And there is even more we can do. According to the research SMARTer2030 conducted by Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI) and Accenture Strategy, digitizing business processes and using data to make better decisions about resource usage is an essential path to reduce carbon emissions. Based on the study results, as well as its own calculations and analysis, SAP came to the conclusion, that digitization in six major industries could help to save up to 7.6 gigatons emissions. That is 63% of the total of 12.1 gigatons emissions identified by the research that could be cut by 2030. An equivalent to approximately 750 billion trees. Just imagine how many more this could be if applied to all industries.

How will you join in?

Daniel Schmid is chief sustainability officer at SAP.

This article also appeared on the Digitalist.

Categories: What's New

Success Is More than Just Profit

Fri, 04/20/2018 - 10:15
Every company has to show how it makes a positive contribution to society. With these words, Larry Fink, chief executive of the world-leading investment firm BlackRock, called on chief executives around the world to prove how sustainable their actions are.

Luka Mucic, chief financial officer of SAP SE

The implications of this one sentence are significant. In his New Year’s letter, Fink also warned that companies without a sense of purpose will lose their social acceptance and the backing of their investors.

Many people will be surprised to hear a message like this coming from a top investor. It is, though, very firmly rooted in reality. In fact, sustainability has been a driver for institutional investors for years: 53% of the funds managed in Europe already incorporate social and environmental criteria. Worldwide, the share is 26%, according to the latest report by the Global Sustainable Investment Alliance.

Sustainability is Rising to the Top of CFOs’ Agendas

It is not enough for CFOs to report just financial performance. Increasingly, investors want to know the relationship between a company’s financial performance and how it treats people and the environment, both within the business itself and across the entire value chain. Accordingly, CFOs have had to broaden their focus. Integrated reporting delivers this knowledge. It gives equal importance to financial and non-financial value creation and shows clearly how they interrelate.

How does this look in practice? We measure our business success by four main indicators: Revenue and operating margin show past performance; employee and customer engagement help us understand what we can achieve in the future. Assigning a monetary value to these last two, seemingly “soft,” factors increases their relevance. How significant an effect non-monetary KPIs can have on operating profit is best illustrated by our Business Health Culture Index. Each percentage point increase or decrease in the index changes our annual operating profit by €85 million to €95 million.

Having this type of information makes it easier to manage companies for the long term. It also opens the door to dialogue with customers, employees, partners, and stakeholders in wider society. That is how the integrated report helps make companies more successful on all levels. It is surely what Larry Fink was thinking of when he called on chief executives across the world to act.

Luka Mucic is chief financial officer of SAP SE.

This story originally appeared in German language in the Handelsblatt.

Categories: What's New

SAP and Global Digital Women Join Forces to Promote and Inspire Women

Fri, 04/20/2018 - 09:45
SAP is joining forces with Global Digital Women (GDW), an international network of female digital pioneers who offer women in technology across industries a platform to exchange ideas and increase their visibility. The two will jointly host a series of global events for women from SAP and beyond and provide a platform to exchange, network, and generate ideas on leveraging diversity for innovation.

Together, SAP and GDW will use various channels to promote and inspire women, ranging from interviews and Instagram takeovers to profile features on social media. A flagship event is planned in the SAP Data Space location in Berlin on September 4, 2018.

Global Digital Women creates opportunities for women in technical roles to expand their external network and exchange knowledge on topics like innovation, diversity, and digitalization. SAP is a strong advocate for an inclusive and diverse workforce and the collaboration is an important part of driving an inclusive mindset.

Diversity fuels innovation, and a rich mix of perspectives enhances engagement with both SAP customers and employees, and helps drive business success in a rapidly changing digital world.

By working with GDW, SAP will further solidify its efforts to be an employer of choice for women in technology across the globe, as well as uphold its commitment to building a strong pipeline of women leaders by 2020, a commitment that dates back many years. In 2017, SAP reached its goal of 25% women in management and became the first tech company to be EDGE certified.

As part of its larger efforts to support women, SAP has implemented a number of beneficial programs, including the Leadership Acceleration Program (LEAP), job sharing, management positions as part time, and even the  Dinner to Go program, where SAP employees in Germany can order and pick up their meals from the cafeterias in Walldorf and St. Leon-Rot.

Last year, the Products & Innovation organization began a “Women in Technology” initiative, designed to strengthen women in expert roles like developers, architects, and data scientists. In internal meet-ups, the network of techie women exchanges on topics ranging from future of work to blockchain or AI.

Sinead Kaiya is chief operating officer for Products & Innovation at SAP.
Elke Manjet is senior vice president of HR for Products & Innovation at SAP.

Categories: What's New

SAP’s Dr. Steve Hunt Named SIOP Fellow for Advancing the Application of Industrial and Organizational Psychology to Improve Human Capital Management

Thu, 04/19/2018 - 12:00
WALLDORF — SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) today announced that Dr. Steve Hunt, senior vice president of human capital management (HCM) research at SAP SuccessFactors, has been named a fellow by the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP).

This prestigious honor is in recognition of Dr. Hunt’s outstanding accomplishments in industrial and organizational psychology and his contributions to the advancement of using psychological knowledge to improve the world of work.

Dr. Hunt pioneered the application of technology to improve human capital management. His career has elevated and advanced the use of technology in industrial and organizational psychology and human resource management. This work has enabled the widespread application of evidence-based psychological theories and methods to support workforce staffing, management and development. Dr. Hunt leads the SAP SuccessFactors HCM Research team, a group of psychologists who study the use of cloud technology to positively influence workforce behavior and talent management decisions. Their work informs the design of SAP SuccessFactors solutions and supports SAP SuccessFactors customers to improve workforce engagement, development, agility and well-being.

“While we are a technology company, people are at the core of everything we do in our business, particularly as we look to address how people use the technology we build to improve their experience at work,” SAP SuccessFactors President Greg Tomb said. “Psychology has for years played a critical role in how we develop technology that is truly designed for people, and we are proud to have Steve on our team, helping us to push the envelope on how we can implement his team’s findings and recommendations in our solutions. I know I speak for all of us at SAP as I take this opportunity to congratulate Steve on this impressive accomplishment.”

Dr. Hunt has played a pivotal role in the design and deployment of HCM technology systems used by more than 6,000 organizations around the globe, including many of the largest companies in the world. These systems have influenced the careers of millions of employees at all levels and stages of their careers. Dr. Hunt will accept the SIOP Fellowship at the 33rd Annual Conference of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, which will be held April 19-21 in Chicago, Ill. Following the awards ceremony on April 19, the newly inducted SIOP Fellows will be listed here.

At the 2018 SIOP Conference Dr. Hunt will be participating in the panel “It’s All About That Hustle: Navigating the Gig Economy,” which will explore psychological issues related to the selection, management and motivation of contract workers. Dr. Hunt’s SAP SuccessFactors HCM Research Team also will be presenting at the event. Dr. Autumn Krauss, principal scientist, and Amy Pytlovany, research scientist, will be participating in the panel “Technology and Workforce Health and Well-Being: Both a Cause and a Cure?,” which will examine the role of technology in both perpetuating and resolving workplace stress and the associated individual and organizational health outcomes. Dr. Krauss will also be moderating the panel “Collaborating Across Scientific Disciplines: Making I-O More Cross-Disciplinary” on how I-O psychologists can better collaborate to positively impact employee and organizational performance. SAP SuccessFactors solutions consultant Tatiana Arthur will discuss transforming HR processes to access, better serve and maximize the potential of neurodiverse talent at I/O Shaken & Stirred. For more information, visit www.siop.org/conferences/18con/.

For more information, visit the SAP SuccessFactors website and the SAP News Center. Follow SAP on Twitter at @SuccessFactors and @sapnews.

Media Contact:
Geraldine Lim, SAP, +1 (415) 418-0945, geraldine.lim@sap.com, PT

Any statements contained in this document that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecast,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “project,” “predict,” “should” and “will” and similar expressions as they relate to SAP are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. SAP undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations. The factors that could affect SAP’s future financial results are discussed more fully in SAP’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), including SAP’s most recent Annual Report on Form 20-F filed with the SEC. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates.
© 2018 SAP SE. All rights reserved.
SAP and other SAP products and services mentioned herein as well as their respective logos are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP SE in Germany and other countries. Please see http://www.sap.com/corporate-en/legal/copyright/index.epx#trademark for additional trademark information and notices.

Categories: What's New

Transitioning Procurement to the Cloud

Thu, 04/19/2018 - 11:15
Many customers currently use the SAP Supplier Relationship Management (SAP SRM) application to manage their procurement processes. Transform SRM is a program from SAP Digital Business Services designed to provide customers with targeted support for their transition to the cloud – namely, to SAP Ariba.

Why does this shift make sense? Because, as well as offering additional benefits, the integrated SAP Ariba platform – unlike older releases of SAP SRM – is fully compliant with the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Imagine a single system that covers everything: ordering, approval, delivery, invoicing, strategic contracts with preferred suppliers, central RFQs across a global platform, and spend analyses. The cloud approach offers the potential to cover all the planning, strategic, and operational aspects of procurement in one place.

The cloud procurement platform SAP Ariba taps into a network of over 3 million connected companies that conduct more than €1.3 trillion of commerce over the network every year. Currently, the majority of SAP customers are still using the on-premise SAP SRM application.

“With SAP’s strategy aligned to the cloud, it makes sense for businesses to start thinking now about transitioning their procurement,” says Martin Boldys from the SAP Ariba Customer Value Organization.

Three Ways to Transition to the Procurement Cloud

SAP customers will find the functions they are familiar with from SAP SRM – for catalogs, discount arrangements with suppliers, auctions, RFQs, order processing, and so on – in the cloud, too.

“Among the key advantages of SAP’s cloud approach are the fact that SAP Ariba offers an end-to-end portfolio of services, and that updates and innovations are available instantly,” explains Boldys. Among the other benefits he pinpoints are the fact that the solution is relatively quick and easy to implement and that its global network of connected suppliers allows companies to drive collaboration with partners beyond the boundaries of their organization.

The program provides three transition options:

  • In the standard option, the customer initially deploys the catalogs, connects up its suppliers, and maps basic procurement processes in the cloud.
  • In the enhanced option, all the payment processes for procurement can also be mapped in the cloud. Order, delivery, invoicing, and controlling are included in the procure-to-pay process. “This is a common scenario,” says Boldys.
  • The comprehensive option additionally includes end-to-end integration into the company’s backend and two-year roll-out support.

It is also possible to map all the key processes of strategic and operational procurement in the cloud in a single project; so not just for indirect spend, but for direct spend as well.

Best Practice Processes: Configuration Replaces the Specification Sheet

Boldys is “not a fan of specification sheets.” If he is looking to inspire a new customer to embrace the cloud approach, he demonstrates the software’s configuration capabilities.

“Lots of things will be possible, but not everything,” he says. “We’re aligning with industry standards. Which means that, generally speaking, only a few technological changes are required.”

There are best practice processes for various industries. Workflows, strategic procurement, the RFQ process — many industry details are reflected in predefined parameters and configuration options. The software also suggests which purchasing processes should be used for which material group.

Dramatic Reduction in Complexity

Despite the availability of predefined industry solutions, Boldys describes transitioning procurement to the cloud as a business transformation project. “It’s much less about technology than about the need for companies to look closely at their processes,” says Boldys.

Because the advantage of procurement in the cloud is that it is based on standards that are already established in the industry. “That is the only way to dramatically reduce complexity,” explains Boldys.

But it is also the reason why companies – even if they are adopting the cloud approach – should realistically schedule six months to examine their existing strategic and operational procurement processes and to ready themselves for the cloud.

Procurement in the Cloud: A Pick of the Benefits

Opting for the transformation route presents businesses with an opportunity to streamline their processes and by doing so, gain an edge over their competitors:

  • Improved usability in the order process: The SAP Fiori user interface is intuitive. Whereas SAP SRM was used primarily by buyers, the user group for SAP Ariba is open. “Any employee can intuitively access a catalog to order the materials or services he or she needs,” is how Boldys explains the KPI he attaches most importance to, namely, user acceptance. Once a manager has approved an order, all the subsequent process steps are automated – right the way from sourcing to invoicing and payment.
  • Automated accounting: Thanks to a defined set of business rules, invoices that do not contain an order number or that specify an amount that exceeds an agreed figure can be automatically rejected. This means that a company’s accounting personnel only process invoices that have already gone through an invoice verification process. Suppliers benefit too, because they can correct their invoices immediately and receive payment for their services more quickly.
  • More efficient and transparent sourcing: Compared with managing procurement in Microsoft Excel and email, Boldys anticipates that, because it is simpler to use, SAP Ariba will improve the efficiency of processes to the tune of around 30 percent. Also, sourcing is now transparent for suppliers. When sourcing projects are created on the platform, competitors can also see the terms and conditions.
  • Simpler contract management: A single dashboard shows the purchasing department which contracts currently exist with suppliers and which are due to expire soon. Armed with this information, buyers can begin renegotiating with suppliers at an early stage. Some reports can even be run without IT skills.

More information: Learn more from SAP Digital Business Services about transforming procurement to the cloud at SAP Ariba Live, taking place April 23-25 in Amsterdam.

Discover SAP Ariba and its practical applications for businesses.
Categories: What's New

Register Now for Webinars: How to Acquire Skills for a Successful Digital Transformation

Thu, 04/19/2018 - 10:00
Equipping your workforce with the right digital skills is a critical first step in the digital transformation of your business. A project of this magnitude involves a lot more than just implementing technology.

It requires people with the skills to understand how to use these new technologies to create competitive advantage and build entirely new customer experiences and business models. To acquire this knowledge within your organization, you will need to roll out a suitable learning architecture and introduce new workforce skills. This requires a supportive learning environment, a company culture of continuous learning, and a range of flexible learning options.

Closing the Digital Skills Gap

In a recent study by Technical University Munich (TUM), 64% of companies surveyed said that they do not have the people with the skills necessary for digital transformation. Surprisingly, however, only 16% of companies have a skill development strategy in place to either up-skill current employees or acquire new employees with the needed skill profiles. As these numbers show, the digital skills gap poses a serious challenge for businesses today. The hard reality is that a lack of digital skills is the number one barrier organizations face for digital transformation.

Building a Skill Development Plan

Have you assessed what up-skilling your workforce needs for current roles, as well as for learning new job roles? Do you have a skill development plan in place to identify and close skill gaps across your organization?

We’re here to help you build a skill development plan that provides a scalable learning experience and blends digital and live training. We’ve developed a series of webinars on How to Acquire the Skills for a Successful Digital Transformation, where we’ll share best practices for developing the skills that are most critical, including digital security, data analytics, and cloud computing, and more.

You will find out how to accelerate onboarding, adoption, and ongoing proficiency among roles involved in implementation and deployment with tailored digital learning resources. Individual webinars will focus on important topics including digital security, data analytics, cloud computing, and more, to give you a better understanding of what is needed to build essential skills in each of these areas.

Register now to save your spot at our upcoming How to Acquire the Skills for a Successful Digital Transformation webinar series.

  • April 23 and 24: Skills for a Successful Digital Transformation
  • April 26: Digital Security
  • May 3: Data Science
  • May 17: SAP Cloud Platform

Bernd Welz is the executive vice president and chief knowledge officer at SAP SE.

This story originally appeared on the SAP Community.

Categories: What's New

IBM Services and SAP Introduce Plans for a New Solution to Help Oil and Gas Companies Streamline Joint Venture Accounting with Blockchain

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 14:00
IBM Services and SAP plan to develop an innovative digital solution to improve the adoption of blockchain capabilities for joint venture accounting (JVA) in the oil and gas industry. The solution expects to improve reconciliation and settlement times between operators and non-operators.

JVA is a unique but common type of accounting in the oil and gas industry. It divides revenues and expenses on a billing statement among its owners, royalty owners, and partners according to a standing agreement.

Currently, upstream operators process and generate thousands of joint billings each month. Many are created on custom software and distributed via mail. These billings are regularly audited and often need additional supported documentation, which must be tracked. Since each party usually has its own ledger, discrepancies between parties regularly causes an increase in reconciliation, complexity, and settlement times. As the number of billing participants increases, the process becomes more complicated.

It’s time for oil and gas companies to simplify the joint venture accounting with blockchain

Due to the huge amount of effort and high cost of reconciliations to sort out billing and payment arrangements, it’s time for oil and gas companies to simplify the JVA process.

Adopting of blockchain is the perfect solution. It creates a record of immutable transactions that can be shared across a closed group, or remain open across a broad network of participants. When a new digital transaction occurs, an expense is posted or exchanged — a transaction notice is sent to all the partners and participants involved, which can be updated in near real time.

New blocks of transactions are validated and linked to older blocks to create strong, secure, and verifiable record without intermediaries or centralized databases. This also helps eliminate “accrual fraud” by partners or middlemen by creating validated, auditable transaction records.

IBM and SAP will focus on solutions implementing blockchain technologies around JVA built on the SAP Leonardo digital innovation system. These solutions will help oil and gas companies transact business with partners and third parties, track payments, and provide supporting documentation — all with permissioned sharing and distributed securely on SAP Cloud Platform Blockchain service built on Hyperledger Fabric, an open source collaborative effort created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies.

IBM and SAP customers are demanding better digital capabilities, including transparency of the distributed billing ledger. The new solution, co-innovated by IBM and SAP under their collaboration around SAP Leonardo, will meet that demand.

Zahid Habib is vice president of Global Chemicals & Petroleum at IBM.
Benjamin Beberness is global vice president of Oil & Gas at SAP.

Categories: What's New

In the New Data Economy, Trust is the Ultimate Currency

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 11:15
The Facebook consumer privacy scandal has focused attention on the importance of trust.

Mark Zuckerberg’s recent appearance before congressional investigators probing the Facebook user data scandal has highlighted the trust chasm that has opened up between consumers and some of the biggest brands in the Internet era.

As a result, we have reached an inflection point in the debate over consumer data privacy and regulation in the U.S. that could have far reaching consequences not only for consumer brands, but also for the technology companies that provide the tools that brand leaders use to manage the customer experience.

The implications of this trust deficit were reflected in the comments of Rep. Michael Doyle, a Democrat from Pennsylvania, who told the Facebook CEO during one exchange: “To my mind, the only way we will close the trust gap is through legislation that creates and empowers a sufficiently (powerful) oversight agency with rule-making authority to protect the digital privacy and ensure that companies protect our users data.”

Ramming home his point, Rep. Doyle added, “Why should we trust you to follow through on these promises when you have demonstrated that you’re willing to flaunt your internal policies and government oversight when the need suits you?”

Zuckerberg had no real answer.

Consumers want a personalized, customized experience online, but not at any cost

At the root of the problem are what might be called the “terms of trust.” Consumers want a personalized, customized experience online, but not at any cost. Consumers will share information about themselves in return for something — better products and better services. But they will only do that if they can control and understand what’s happening with their data. This is what is technically thought of as consent.

“We are moving to a world where data is probably the most valuable asset, but trust is the ultimate currency in this new data economy,” says Patrick Salyer, CEO of Gigya, recently acquired by SAP. Salyer argues that over the past decade, brands have delivered on personalization, but that at some point a line was crossed.

“They began tracking people without their permission and creepy things were happening,” he says. “Their data was being sold without their knowledge. Ultimately, all of this has eroded consumer trust.”

In fact, a recent survey suggested that two-thirds of consumers don’t trust brands anymore.

“Consumers still want personalization,” Salyer says. “I don’t think that’s something they want to move away from, but transparency and control around their data is becoming critical.“

Salyer argues that the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that go into effect next month — and which some consider a possible model for U.S. regulation — are a symptom or a response to what consumers are feeling: “Usually you see regulation getting too far ahead of things, I think this is regulation actually following what consumers want.”

More generally he and other privacy experts argue that it is no longer acceptable for brands to assume they have permission to use customer data, they need to actively ask for consent. That means rethinking the technologies underpinning both the customer experience and the role of customer relationship management (CRM) software.

As Salyer notes: “Trust is everything. The next leading brands will be the most trusted brands.”

Categories: What's New

SAP Study Reveals Key Traits of Machine Learning Leaders

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 11:00
WALLDORF — Nearly half (48 percent) of the companies who say they have already benefited from machine learning cite increased profitability as the top benefit they have realized, according to a new study from SAP SE (NYSE: SAP).

A similar share of companies who are already benefiting from machine learning also expect revenue growth of more than 6 percent for the two-year period of 2018-2019, the study showed. The study was conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) and written in discussion with SAP.

Making the Most of Machine Learning: 5 Lessons from Fast Learners” is based on survey results from 360 senior executives across four geographic regions: North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Latin America. The study identifies the opportunities, value and implications for companies that look at machine learning in a holistic way. The results also reveal leading companies — called Fast Learners — that are already seeing substantial benefits from machine learning. These benefits span the entire organization and include increased profitability and revenues, greater competitive differentiation, and faster, more accurate and more cost-efficient processes.

Traits of Machine Learning Leaders

Fast Learners hold five key traits. They:

  • Make machine learning a C-level strategic priority: Fast Learners have senior management who understand the strategic value of machine learning and are more open to embracing change. Seventy-five percent of Fast Learners plan to retrain employees displaced by machine learning to perform more interesting and higher-value tasks that keep them within their organization.
  • Drive competitive differentiation and innovation: Fast Learners see machine learning as a way to stand apart from the competition. Thirty-one percent say machine learning has already resulted in business model or business process innovation. For example, UK-based Ocado, an online grocery retailer, created its own machine learning–based logistics platform for automated warehouses that it plans to license to other retailers.
  • Recognize potential for new revenues and profitability: Fast Learners have realized that machine learning can increase profitability and impact new revenue streams, due in part to faster, more accurate and more cost-efficient processes — including the ability to identify revenue opportunities more accurately.
  • Keep key processes close to home: Fast Learners are spending more today on business functions — such as finance and HR — sourced locally (58 percent) than they are in low-cost regions (22 percent) — and they expect that trend to continue. Business relevance and customer value will increasingly take precedence over cost in important decisions on sourcing priorities.
  • Implement an enterprise-wide strategy: Fast Learners are implementing machine learning enterprise-wide, rather than within individual business units or functions. They have also done more to integrate machine learning into key customer-facing and product development functions. Forty-one percent say machine learning is translating into higher customer satisfaction.

“Machine learning is creating results for businesses — both on their income statement and with their customers,” said Mike Flannagan, senior vice president, SAP Leonardo and Analytics. “Executives need to view machine learning not as a quick fix but as an integral part of a larger strategy to give their business a competitive edge. This requires looking past the initial investment and focusing on the potential for long-term business value.”

Visit the SAP News Center. Follow SAP on Twitter at @sapnews.

About the Study
The survey underlying ​“Making the Most of Machine Learning: 5 Lessons from Fast Learners” was conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit​ from September to October 2017. The survey included 360 senior executives from four geographic regions: North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Latin America. Half of the respondents came from organizations with $500 million or more in annual revenue.  Read the full study here.

Media Contacts:
Natalie Fine, SAP, +1 (212) 653-1414, natalie.fine@sap.com, ET
Kate Lavoie-Mayer, PAN Communications, +1 (617) 502-4338, klavoiemayer@pancomm.com, ET

Any statements contained in this document that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecast,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “project,” “predict,” “should” and “will” and similar expressions as they relate to SAP are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. SAP undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations. The factors that could affect SAP’s future financial results are discussed more fully in SAP’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), including SAP’s most recent Annual Report on Form 20-F filed with the SEC. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates.
© 2018 SAP SE. All rights reserved.
SAP and other SAP products and services mentioned herein as well as their respective logos are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP SE in Germany and other countries. Please see http://www.sap.com/corporate-en/legal/copyright/index.epx#trademark for additional trademark information and notices.

Categories: What's New

At SAPPHIRE NOW, Connected Mobility Is a “Snap”

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 09:15
Connected cars and autonomous vehicles made a big splash at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, and for good reason. It’s a rapidly growing market with expectations to surpass $219 billion by 2025.

One of the most buzz-worthy developments in this arena is Rinspeed Snap – a giant, autonomous “skateboard” of sorts that illustrates the art of the possible in today’s new mobility ecosystem.

If you’re attending SAPPHIRE NOW this year, you’ll be able to experience the Snap concept on Thursday, June 7, at 11:30 a.m. ET in the Best Run theater during the session “The Power of Innovation and New Mobility’s Impact on Society with the Rinspeed Snap Vehicle.”

During this session, attendees will have the opportunity to meet Stefan Krauss, head of Discrete Industries at SAP, and Frank M. Rinderknecht, founder, CEO and visionary of Rinspeed. Not only will attendees learn how transformational thinking and technological innovation accelerates the vision of new mobility, the Rinspeed Snap vehicle will also make an appearance on the SAPPHIRE NOW show floor.

“Rinspeed is an amazing think tank and creator of incredible concept cars,” said Dave Parrish, senior global marketing director for Automotive & Industrial at SAP. “SAP is thrilled to host the Rinspeed Snap vehicle on the SAPPHIRE NOW show floor this year in a showcase that will also feature smart city and smart grid demonstrations.”

Parrish said attendees will be able to see firsthand the autonomous modular vehicle that will go a long way to help solve transportation congestion challenges in urban areas. Rinspeed CEO and Founder, Frank M. Rinderknecht will also be speaking on the Best Run Theater stage about his vision for future mobility ecosystems, fully connected user experiences, and how co-innovation can have significant impact on all of society.

Categories: What's New

Smart Wheelchair Contributes to Patients’ Quality of Life

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 13:00
In a co-innovation project, SAP equips wheelchairs with sensors to provide a deeper understanding of the relationship between sitting posture and detrimental discomforts.

The long-term effects of sitting in a wheelchair can be life threatening — users can get pressure ulcers and spine and muscle deformities, feel pain, or are simply exhausted after up to 14 hours of sitting. Bad posture is a major challenge, because often the wheelchair-bound are not able to control or change their sitting position on their own. With approximately 132 million people in wheelchairs, this is a big problem in terms of individual’s pain and high costs for healthcare systems.

In the smart wheelchair project, SAP has co-innovated with Dutch wheelchair manufacturer Life & Mobility — ergo therapists, the scientific field, and users — to equip four wheelchairs with 11 sensors each. These sensors transmit information every four seconds on pressure distribution, temperature, and the user’s sitting posture. This data can be sent to SAP Cloud Platform via Wi-Fi for further analysis using SAP Leonardo Analytics and advanced algorithms.

Realistic Big Data

“The smart wheelchair offers us the Big Data we need to gain deeper insight into the sitting behavior of wheelchair users, and how to adapt this conduct to create more autonomy,” says movement scientist Hanneke Knibbe from LOCOmotion, a researcher involved in the project. “Not much research has been performed on long-term sitting and its effects on the health of wheelchair users. Any available data usually comes from laboratory environments, and not from the field.

Knibbe believes that the smart wheelchair project can lead to a breakthrough: “We now have at our disposal large quantities of realistic data, derived from daily practice. This detailed information is necessary to establish links between sitting behavior and the human body’s response to this. You can use this information to further optimize wheelchairs, providing more comfort and ultimately a better quality of life.”

Improved Sitting Posture

Sensire Den Ooiman in Doetinchem, Netherlands, is one of the nursing homes cooperating in this research project. This home is temporarily using smart wheelchairs.

“In my everyday professional practice, I see a clear relationship between a good sitting posture and the prevention of long-term negative effects of sitting in a wheelchair,” explains Adinda van Sommeren, ergo therapist at Sensire healthcare organization. “The smart wheelchair provides more insight into how the wheelchair user positions his or her body. This will give us more clarity on the requirements for well-supported sitting.”

“We are always seeking ways to improve the quality of life for wheelchair users,” adds Harmen Leskens, manager of Product Management and Development at Life & Mobility. “This can be realized with better wheelchairs, but also with advising the patient and nursing staff on changing sitting positions throughout the day. By improving this posture, we prevent the adverse effects of wheelchair use, and the patient has more energy to socially participate.”

“Smart wheelchair is a fine example of how you can positively contribute to society using the Internet of Things and Big Data,” says Jan Willem Dijkstra, program manager at SAP the Netherlands who devised this concept. “SAP has the technological know-how and Life & Mobility knows all about sitting properly. Together, we can find a solution for issues that are inherent in long-term wheelchair use.”

Three Questions for SAP Program Manager Jan Willem Dijkstra

Q: How did you decide to work on the smart wheelchair solution?
A: The idea for the smart wheelchair solution emerged from combining a number of storylines. My wife is a nurse and I heard from her about the negative effects of a wrong sitting position, the long-term process of treating pressure ulcers (decubitus), the impact of this on the well-being of patients, and the fact that each pressure ulcer is in principle preventable. From my colleagues I heard about the new features and  functions of SAP Leonardo. And one of my friends from the village where I live was the owner of a wheelchair factory and he told me about their innovative ambitions, but little progress was made on measuring posture. I combined those stories and during a design thinking session we started working on a low fidelity prototype of a smart wheelchair.

What has been the biggest challenge you encountered on that project?
One of the biggest challenges is to keep pace in the innovation process. You run into all sorts of questions that cannot always be answered during a discovery phase, e.g., from a license perspective, who the customer is, who the contract parties are, who to fund what. Note that at the moment, there is no one in the world collecting real-time sitting position data from wheelchair users. New services can be developed for this based on currently non-existing business models.

Do you envision further use cases for this technology in the future?
We have now laid the foundation in a prototype and are doing research in the field. Based on the outcome, we will further refine the prototype and continue both to develop commercial applications as well as continue to collect data. With large datasets we can do analyses to further study sitting posture and the effect on the well-being of users. Moreover, Big Data will provide input for new research in other directions, for example, the prevention of inactivity in the elderly, another socially relevant topic!

 

Categories: What's New

Developing a Smart Wheelchair

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 12:50

The long-term effects of sitting in a wheelchair can be devastating — patients can get pressure ulcers and spine and muscle deformities, feel pain, or simply be exhausted after up to 14 hours of sitting.

Bad posture is a major challenge, because often wheelchair-bound patients are not able to control or change their sitting position on their own.

SAP Netherlands is working to change this by developing a smart wheelchair. Created in collaboration with Dutch manufacturer of wheelchairs and mobility scooters, Life & Mobility, an advanced prototype of the smart wheelchair has integrated sensors that continually generate mass data from the patient actually sitting in it; for example, the pressure distribution in the seat and backrest.

Based on SAP Leonardo, Big Data is collected and stored centrally in SAP Cloud Platform and analyzed with help of SAP analytics.

Categories: What's New

Hala Zeine Named President of Digital Supply Chain and Manufacturing at SAP

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 10:00
WALLDORF SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) today announced that Hala Zeine has been appointed as president of Digital Supply Chain and Manufacturing.

As a seasoned leader in IT, technology and supply chain management, Zeine will help drive innovation across digital supply chain and manufacturing solutions from SAP, in addition to overseeing an ecosystem of partners, start-up programs, co-innovation, product design and go-to-market strategy.

Zeine most recently served as SAP’s chief business development officer, responsible for defining portfolio investment strategy, commercialization direction and digital transformation. In this role, she led SAP’s portfolio, pricing and commercialization, market introduction and the SAP Digital organization. She has also held previous senior leadership roles in development, solution management, marketing and consulting since joining SAP in 2001.

Digital supply chain and manufacturing solutions from SAP help the world’s leading businesses of all sizes optimize performance, gain new insights and maximize responsiveness and efficiency. Zeine will play a vital role in solving customers’ business problems and helping them adopt digital solutions to enhance and support mission-critical business processes. She reports to Bernd Leukert, SAP Executive Board Member, Products & Innovation, and will continue to be based in Walldorf, Germany.

Visit the SAP News Center. Follow SAP on Twitter at @sapnews.

Media Contacts:
Jim Dever, +1 (610) 661-2161, james.dever@sap.com, ET
Kathrin Eiermann, +49 6227 767029, simone.kathrin.eiermann@sap.com, CET

Any statements contained in this document that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecast,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “project,” “predict,” “should” and “will” and similar expressions as they relate to SAP are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. SAP undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations. The factors that could affect SAP’s future financial results are discussed more fully in SAP’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), including SAP’s most recent Annual Report on Form 20-F filed with the SEC. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates.
© 2018 SAP SE. All rights reserved.
SAP and other SAP products and services mentioned herein as well as their respective logos are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP SE in Germany and other countries. Please see http://www.sap.com/corporate-en/legal/copyright/index.epx#trademark for additional trademark information and notices.

Categories: What's New

The Past, Present, and Future of Talent Acquisition

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 09:30
Talent acquisition has gone on an accelerated journey the past several decades and continues to push the envelope on emerging technologies in organizations.

It has come a long way from manual processes to the digital age ruled by automation. All this change has happened in a relatively short time. Let’s look back and see what caused this progression and how it’s affected our industry.

Talent Acquisition Journey

The ghosts of talent acquisitions past are filled with amazing technology. Just kidding, it’s not, but it’s good to review an example from the past to appreciate the future.

As I was holiday shopping, I noticed the store I was in was very busy and understaffed. Feeling a bit overwhelmed, I quickly bought the new Rubik’s Cube for my brother and a Cabbage Patch doll for my little sister. A few days later, I was looking in the Sunday paper and noticed that exact store had an opening for a sales associate. The store posted jobs in the classified ads every Sunday. The next day I called and asked if I could drop off my resume. The sales manager told me to come by on Thursday of that week or fax in my resume. Excited and wanting to make a personal impact, I put on my best acid-washed jeans, flipped up my pink collared shirt, and hurried into the store to drop off my resume. (Don’t laugh, that was the style back then–you know who you are!) Two weeks later, I got the call and I went in for an interview. As I proceeded through the interview, the manager was making notes all over my perfectly printed resume. He told me that he would need to call my old employer to be sure I was worth hiring. They did call my previous employer to see if I was a good employee. I hoped my old boss would give me a good reference.

Luckily, she did. I got a call a few days later to come back in one week ready to start my new retail journey. My first day was filled with me signing policies and procedures and watching old VHS learning tapes in the back office. The company was taking advantage of the newest recording devices to help me quickly onboard and become productive within a few weeks.

After a few months of working in my new job, I asked my manager a few questions about the hiring process. She explained that when my role became available, she faxed in a request to corporate and waited for HR to approve the filling of the position. After they approved it, they put the job on the radio and it was announced by Casey Kasem during the weekly Top 40. They also put an ad in the local Sunday paper to maximize the effect.

After six months, I was promoted to store manager. As a new manager, I was sent a three-ring binder directly to the store, which broke down all my new responsibilities. After being recognized as a thought leader among the retail management ranks, I would send in typed letters to corporate on things we could improve. I was recognized at the annual holiday dinner by my manager.

The Future of Talent Acquisition

My, how things have changed. The future is filled with very innovative technology. Let’s use the following talent acquisition process to help define what we will see in the next few years.

As I was holiday shopping, I noticed an alert on my phone, a pop-up message from the store that I was in notifying me of available jobs at this location. The store was using geo-location technology to track my entrance into the store. After clicking the link and finding a job I was interested in, it prompted me to answer questions from its virtual recruiter. The company was utilizing chat bot technology to communicate with me. After being prompted for personal information, job history, and availability, a store manager walked over to me and asked if I had a few minutes to sit down with her. Encouraged and impressed, I eagerly followed her. The manager had been notified through an app extension on her iPad alerting her I had applied virtually but was still in the store and met all the basic qualifications. I proceeded through the interview and was offered a position contingent on passing a background and drug test. I accepted! While sitting there, the hiring manager pulled up her iPad with my information pre-populated and requested a background check/drug test. Within minutes the background results came back and she sent me a link via SMS to a drug test location and associated authorization code utilizing bar code functionality. The company had an integrated background check provider that allows managers to request and receive background/drug information directly back to their tablet/phone to enable quick and efficient hiring.

After passing my drug test, I showed up for my first day of work. I was immediately taken into the office to complete my onboarding. I put on virtual reality goggles and proceeded through acknowledging my policies and procedures. I also was able to sit through two learning sessions directly related to my new role as a sales associate. The company was taking advantage of VR technology to help me quickly onboard and become productive within hours of my arrival.

After a few months of working in my new job, I asked my manager a few questions about the hiring process. She explained that when my role became available, a requisition was created automatically and an automated talent pool was created internally to determine if there were any internal employees available for my specific job and location. There were no internal candidates so the system provided the recruiter with suggestions on things like salary range and bias impact on my job description. The company I worked for not only promoted diversity and inclusion, they had technology like machine learning tied to predictive analytics to help promote their efforts.

After six months, I was promoted to store manager. As a new manager, I was sent a link on my iPad to sign up for the company’s mentoring program. After signing up, I was then sent a behavioral assessment to determine if I had the propensity and desire to support the upcoming Autism at Work program. After passing with flying colors, I was prompted once a week for three weeks with inclusion training. Utilizing my iPad, I was able to update my development plan and use this to support my weekly conversation with my district manager. My company was utilizing continuous performance management technology to support my ongoing development.

The Secret Sauce

Get comfortable with change: We live in a world of ever-changing technology and it’s important to embrace this and explore options that will make a positive impact to your organization. One easy option is to ensure your career sites are built with responsive design. This is a design and engineering model for creating websites. It means your candidates will experience your website in its full glory regardless of the device they are on — phone, tablet, or PC.

Do your research: While there are many technological options coming available, some may not fit your infrastructure. For example, spend time getting to know the rich options that social networks provide. Review your partner strategy to ensure they are also developing at the same pace as your ATS.

Keep your customer as your leading priority: When reviewing and making decisions about what to use, always use your customer as your common denominator. Customers expect a fully digital experience throughout the hiring process. Getting them up to speed and productive in a short amount of time is key to them and your company’s long-term success.

Do This One Thing Tomorrow

I read recently that the job I am in today didn’t even exist 10 years ago and the same concept goes for technology. We are crossing over into a world of computer bot language, artificial intelligence, business beyond bias, and machine learning — and are still learning what these technologies will bring. Our advice? Run to the cloud! The market is evolving so fast it is imperative you stay relevant to your future customers. Regardless of the technology you choose, human resource tools are making an ascent into the unknown. Explore technological options that better your processes, improve the candidate experience, and promote the culture and well-being of your organization.

Find out the five key trends and actions that can help businesses of all sizes address the challenges of digital transformation. IDC and SAP SuccessFactors collaborated to create roadmaps to executing on the latest HR trends. Check out the roadmaps here.

Mike Hofer is a senior solutions advisor for SAP SuccessFactors Talent Management.

Categories: What's New

SAP to Offer Special Student Pricing for SAP Global Certification Program

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 09:00
WALLDORF SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) today announced special pricing to university students interested in obtaining SAP certification from the SAP Global Certification program.

Students can be certified as developers of the SAP HANA business data platform, a highly valuable skill in today’s job market, and earn other certifications from SAP for just €99.

SAP Global Certification for SAP HANA will be rolled out to academia through the Code with Purpose initiative sponsored by the SAP Next-Gen program. The network reaches over 3,500 educational institutions in 113 countries. A full curriculum of free certification preparation courses are available to students through the openSAP platform. Students attending members schools of the SAP University Alliances program that offer courses in SAP HANA can also prepare for certification.

By making SAP certification more accessible to students, SAP is furthering its commitment to continuous learning and empowering students with skills to be successful in today’s workforce.

“By making the SAP Global Certification program affordable for students today, we are enabling the next generation of developers who will ‘code with purpose’ to drive innovations linked to the 17 UN global goals,” SAP Chief Knowledge Officer Bernd Welz said. “Our small investment in their studies will allow students to differentiate themselves in the eyes of prospective employers worldwide seeking skilled graduates with in-depth, documented knowledge of game-changing SAP technologies, including SAP HANA, the SAP Leonardo digital innovation system and other cloud-based applications.”

In addition to SAP HANA, students will have access to over 59 different certification exams in more than 20 languages for just €99 each. With more than 378,000 companies using SAP software worldwide, earning certification from the SAP Global Certification program opens a wide range of international career opportunities to students. Upon successful completion of any certification exam, students are awarded an SAP Global Certification digital badge that will serve as part of their credentials when speaking to prospective employers.

Once enrolled, students have access to the Certification Hub for 12 months and will be able to pursue one exam from any of the certification exams available. Exam preparation is self-paced and available anytime, anywhere through SAP Learning Hub, student edition. Those with access to the student edition can access training materials specific to their SAP certification of choice. To subscribe to SAP Learning Hub, student edition, students should speak with their professors or universities to suggest that this resource be made available to students.

Students also can gain knowledge of SAP HANA through the course “Application Development for SAP HANA” (HA450), available in a classroom setting, as a stand-alone digital course or by accessing the course through the student edition of SAP Learning Hub.

Exams given by SAP Global Certification can be easily scheduled and are available online 24×7. For those hoping to take advantage of this unique offering, more information on how to subscribe to SAP certification for students can be found here.

Visit the SAP News Center. Follow SAP on Twitter at @sapnews.

Media Contacts:
Martin Gwisdalla, SAP, +49 (6227) 7-67275, martin.gwisdalla@sap.com, CET
Erin Albright, FleishmanHillard, +1 (617) 692-0543, erin.albright@fleishman.com, ET

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Categories: What's New