Today at SAP’s SAPPHIRE NOW event in Orlando, Florida, SAP CEO Bill McDermott introduced a bold, new SAP to more than 25,000 in-person attendees during his opening keynote.
With a new mantra of “Run Simple,” SAP now has its sights set on eliminating the unruly “complexity sprawl” that has crept into the world’s IT and business processes. And as a sign of SAP’s commitment to helping customers run simple, McDermott also announced SAP Fiori is now free.
“SAP has a bold vision for the future of business,” said McDermott. “A simpler world, simpler SAP and simpler customer experience.”
McDermott was quick to recognize naysayers who might claim SAP can’t possibly back the “Run Simple” claim because SAP itself is too complex. “That’s why there is a huge chip on my shoulder and on the shoulders on 67,000 employees,” said McDermott. “We can and we will fight complexity. We have been solving the most complex business problems for past 40 years.”
McDermott said complexity has bothered him since the early days of his corporate career. He highlighted to SAPPHIRE NOW attendees a few different studies that indicate complexity is only getting worse. “Maybe it’s just insidious and invisible but none of us can deny it’s everywhere.”
How does a company create 20 layers of complex management structures? McDermott believes managers create a lot of complexity. Every time a new product is introduced or acquisition brought into the fold a new layer is created, forcing companies into a “whack-a-mole” mentality when trying to manage all of the layers. “A big company should not be structured like an onion and it shouldn’t make you cry when you peel back each layer,” said McDermott.
McDermott ascertains that digital native consumers want their work processes to be just as user friendly as their consumer processes. If that’s the case, why is it harder to engage with employees than friends? Why is it harder to order a tablet at work than at home? Hasn’t decision making become too complex? “From PowerPoint slides to excel spread sheets and endless meetings that lead to nothing, how many of you want to stop playing office?” asked McDermott.
McDermott said the amount of data is doubling every day and expected to reach a staggering 40 zettabytes (40 trillion gigabytes) by 2020. Sprawling IT environments means valuable insight is trapped in silos; 72 percent goes to maintenance that doesn’t move the needle leaving less for innovation. “We can’t continue like this, we cant let complexity win.”
SAP customers Conagra and Nespresso aren’t letting complexity win. Conagra manages more than 100 different brands and uses SAP to remove complex layers and enable fast decision-making and real-time pricing all on SAP HANA. As a result, McDermott said Conagra saved $700 million, improved customer satisfaction and is growing faster than its competitors. Nespresso is also embracing the simple side of SAP. With hybris and SAP cloud, Nespresso is creating “beautiful” mobile apps that are “simple and intuitive,” according to McDermott.
McDermott wants every SAP customer to share the same success as Conagra and Nespresso by running a simple user experience with Fiori capabilities. “Everyone said we shouldn’t charge for Fiori. I agree. Fiori is now included free. We believe the future is not what you get from customers but what you give to them. SAP is with you every step of the way. We promise to be your trusted innovator whether running on mobile, on premise or in cloud.”
Watch a replay of the keynote here.