SAP Expands Footprints for Mobile Business Solutions

Feature Article | June 20, 2007 by admin

New capabilities for the existing suite of SAP mobile solutions, named “SAP xApps composite applications for mobile business,” will help information workers be more productive and make better business decisions. The company also announced the latest version of SAP NetWeaver Mobile, a mobile infrastructure that provides the foundation for SAP mobile solutions and enables organizations to easily build customized applications by leveraging the flexibility of enterprise SOA.
The company also demonstrates continued momentum in the mobile market with more than 850 customers and a 50 percent increase in its mobile business year over year. Customers have embraced SAP mobile solutions because SAP continues to deliver an infrastructure and applications that are vertically specific and address the needs of information workers according to their role within an organization, from executives to sales staff to field service professionals.
SAP mobile solutions can easily be customized and extended to adapt to new business conditions, another key benefit for customers. Because the solutions are seamlessly integrated with SAP Business Suite and can be combined with non-SAP solutions, developers can select the exact business processes and data their remote users need.

New and enhanced mobile applications for information workers

SAP extends its mobile solutions to improve efficiency for information workers, including sales professionals, retail clerks, service technicians and delivery staff.
Recognizing that sales professionals are a critical group of information workers, SAP has extended its existing SAP xApp Mobile Sales composite application, which provides remote access to customer and product information. New capabilities allow sales staff to conduct trade promotion evaluations and access customer feedback instantly while on the road. Because SAP xApp Mobile Sales delivers market survey results to mobile devices, sales staff can more strategically plan their promotion campaigns and product allocation. Also, SAP is adding new industry-specific capabilities to SAP xApp Mobile Sales. Now sales representatives in consumer packaged goods industry will be able to use their mobile devices to more effectively audit sales and manage customer profiles.
An entirely new composite application, SAP Mobile In-Store Inventory Management, will extend SAP for Retail solutions to mobile devices. The new application provides retail clerks with mobile visibility into current inventory data so they can help customers locate the right product more quickly. With increased inventory accuracy, sales clerks can minimize out-of stock situations and improve customer satisfaction.
Service technicians, who perform on-site repairs and equipment maintenance, are another category of information worker that will benefit from the new mobile capabilities and solutions from SAP. Enhancements to SAP xApp Mobile Asset Management (SAP xMAM), a composite application that provides maintenance technicians with remote access to work orders and equipment information, now includes both geographic information system (GIS) and radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology. These enhancements allow mobile service workers to more precisely plan travel routes and track time spent at each job, which improves customer service efficiency.
Field service engineers will also benefit from a new handheld version of the composite application, SAP xApp Mobile Service, planned for release in 2008. They will use this application to access work orders and additional information about customers’ service history on their mobile devices, to better anticipate which equipment and parts are needed for each job − and resolve customer issues the first visit.
For the past three years, SAP xApp Mobile Direct Store Delivery (SAP xMDSD) has connected delivery drivers to the enterprise so they can process invoices, capture orders and manage stock while on the road. New capabilities for SAP xMDSD provide delivery personnel with simpler payment processing and inventory control, which helps validate the cash and product flow from their vehicles, provide up-to-date inventory information and better serve their customers.

Updated infrastructure for mobile: enterprise SOA provides unprecedented flexibility

The new version of SAP NetWeaver Mobile includes a re-architected mobile infrastructure that harnesses the power of enterprise SOA and delivers an integrated solution – from the platform up. The new mobile foundation enables customers and partners to use the SAP NetWeaver development capabilities to more easily build applications that scale and adapt to evolving business demands. Organizations can leverage the SAP NetWeaver platform to build applications that more quickly give mobile workers access to functionality and data from both SAP and non-SAP applications.

Customers embrace mobile technology from SAP for business benefits

Companies around the globe are increasingly turning to SAP for their mobile solutions. A current SAP mobile customer based in Germany, TÜV NORD is a global leader in providing technical safety and environmental protection services. Completed in only a few months, the company’s SAP mobile implementation now includes more than 2,500 users and saw 200,000 reports processed more efficiently and accurately last year.
“SAP’s comprehensive strategy for helping information workers solves some of our key business challenges,” said Gunnar Thaden, CIO, TÜV NORD. “Our employees work on the front lines helping companies to better protect people, the environment and property from dangers associated with manufacturing and operating technical equipment. SAP mobile solutions allow our services staff to focus on helping customers rather than coming back to the office to fill out time and expense reports. To maximize the value of our SAP business processes, it’s critical that people can use them in their everyday, familiar environment – SAP’s information worker strategy gives us the power to do exactly that.” Empresas Polar, one of the largest producers and distributors of beer and malt, food products and soft drinks in South America, is another existing SAP mobile customer.
“SAP enables us to easily and seamlessly bring SAP business processes to our sales and delivery workforce on their mobile devices,” said Alejandro Bombaci, CIO, Empresas Polar. “It’s critical that our business applications can keep pace as we grow and evolve. Full integration with the SAP Business Suite has simplified IT support and helped us more quickly adapt to changing business conditions. With SAP mobile solutions, we have been able to more accurately predict consumer demand, improve supply chain planning and reduce the time our sales staff spends in the warehouse performing administrative tasks.”
“SAP recognized early on that people need simple, direct access to critical business applications and data regardless of where they are located – and continue delivering solutions that help them do business in innovative ways,” said Doug Merritt, corporate officer and member of the Executive Council, head of Business User Development, SAP AG. “The new mobile solutions announced today focus on giving information workers simple access to data anytime, anywhere – and add to our already strong portfolio of solutions that allow business users to interact simply with enterprise applications.”

Availability

Enhancements for SAP xApp Mobile Sales and SAP xApp Mobile Asset Management are currently available. SAP xApp Mobile Service for handheld is expected to be available in 2008. SAP Mobile In-store Inventory Management is expected in Q3 2007. SAP NetWeaver Mobile is planned to be available on a restricted basis in November 2007.

Source: SAP AG

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