Drawing on Dr Stephen Covey's popular book, 'The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People,' I'd like to list out SAP's Seven Strategies that are driving the ERP giant's transformation into a Business Applications and Business Platform company. I believe the strategies are as inspiring to the business world, as those advocated by Dr. Covey were for the individual.
1. Provide access from mobile devices, by engineering a modern database that transforms the way the Business Suite interacts with the database. Hence,the genesis of SAP's foray into databases and the birth of SAP HANA (High-Performance Analytic Appliance). HANA gives existing SAP customers the opportunity to leveragedata and analytics immediately.
2. Re-engineer SAP's products closely into HANA to create high performance apps that are virtually inseparable from the database. These can be leveragedwhere data volumes and cost containment concerns do not justify the movement of entire data volumes to an In-memory database. There are positive technical implications thatinclude real time data replication from ERP to BW; faster data loads; faster query performance, etc that make the enterprise more responsive.
3. Leverage the inherent strengths of the HANA database, as well as the possibilities that open up by running the SAP Business Suite and BW on HANA.Consumption of the Business Suite on HANA will move away from desktops to mobile devices. HANA's programming environment that allows independent applicationdevelopment will provide end users with customized functionality.
4. Re-make large portions of the Business Suite for primary consumption on the mobile. In the long term, SAP is pushing towards a world where mobileapps will be the primary mode of access to the Business Suite.
5. Take all the innovations around HANA, Business Suite, BW, and Mobility and deliver that on the Cloud. The SAP Cloud will bedisruptive as features and functions entice business users to move away from the traditional Business Suite.
6. Seek out new markets to drive growth. Channel partners will be largely responsible for a large proportion of this growth. The industry will reach out tothe reseller channel to drive this growth.
7. Make it easier and faster for customers to deploy SAP's applications. SAP has launched the concept of Rapid Deployment Solutions that combinesoftware, enablement content and services in a fixed price and fixed scope capsule to deliver predictability, speed and simplicity to the customer. Along the same theme, SAP willdrive faster and more standard implementation practices, as mobility and cloud emerge as dominant vehicles for delivering the Business Suite.This is by no means an exhaustive account of SAP's strategies, as I expect SAP to develop and introduce new strategies over the next 12-24 months. However, the elements ofthe seven SAP strategies listed above, are unfolding in a spectacularly successful and orchestrated manner as SAP strives to get the message out and secure early wins.