This IDC Financial Insights Perspective discusses SAP's commitment to change to make SAP simpler. The message that was repeated often at SAPPHIRE NOW 2014 is that SAP "runs simple." Given that most customers, partners, and industry watchers see SAP as complex, this is an aspirational goal. The program was summarized well by Jonathan Becher, SAP's CMO, who said at the June 4, 2014, press conference that the push to simplicity is a mantra for SAP that must be systemic throughout the organization. SAP spokespeople from CEO Bill McDermott down were united in declaring this goal and SAP's commitment to change to make SAP simple to use, simple to implement and adapt, and simple to do business with (for customers and partners). In detail:
- SAP is changing its core SAP Business Suite powered by SAP HANA but not rewriting it, given the level of effort that would require and the potential disruption to its customers.
- SAP is building out new cloud-based industry solutions that represent more thoroughgoing change and that are potentially disruptive.
- SAP is reexamining its business practices with customers and partners to bridge the gap between today's reality and the goal of simple to do business with.
- SAP's own Services business is working on how to make implementations simpler throughout the ecosystem.
A highlight of SAP's commitment to change was the announcement of SAP Simple Finance, an enhanced approach to financial processes, featuring a new, modern user experience (UX) based on the SAP Fiori UX principles — much more engaging than the traditional SAP GUI. The result appears very easy to use and is fast. IDC believes that SAP Simple Finance is a good foundation for CFOs who want to lead the transformation of their role in the organization, from record keepers and providers of financial information to partners in the business.