To ensure that the SAP ONE Support Launchpad really meets the needs of end users, customers were invited to offer their feedback right from the get-go.
In the past, when new applications were piloted, end users were generally given a restricted amount of time to validate them – and usually not until just before the product’s completion date. This did give them a chance to gain an initial impression of what the final application will look like, but, at a late stage, there’s very little opportunity for them to influence the product’s design and development.
While we were creating the SAP ONE Support Launchpad, SAP decided to take a different approach by inviting users to get involved in the design and development process at an early stage. We started by utilizing SAP HANA Cloud Platform and giving interested participants access to a special account in which they could work with early elements of the application on their live data — without time limits. Under this new approach, new or updated functions are introduced incrementally every five weeks and the participants are given the opportunity to share their opinions on the SAP ONE Support Launchpad at regular feedback and roll-out sessions.
We spoke to Jens Pommer from E.ON Business Services GmbH about his experiences with this approach. Pommer, who is responsible for SAP Contract and Vendor Management at E.ON and for the E.ON Group’s CCoE, is taking part in the SAP ONE Support Launchpad pilot project. He told us about his impressions.
Q: Where did you first hear about the SAP ONE Support Launchpad and SAP’s new cooperation model?
A: It was at a DSAG (German-speaking SAP user group) event last November, when SAP presented an early version of the SAP ONE Support Launchpad. The idea of a central entry point that provides at-a-glance, personalized information caught my interest immediately – particularly as our technology and applications landscape had recently been transformed to accommodate both on-premise and cloud solutions. I could see that the SAP ONE Support Launchpad would give our teams easy-to-use, unified access to all the service and support resources they need.
Following on from its presentation, SAP invited audience members to get involved in a new piloting model for the Launchpad. As you can imagine, I jumped at the chance to influence its development at an early stage. Access to the current version of the SAP ONE Support Launchpad was quick and easy: I was able to familiarize myself with the new environment and start conducting practical tests straight away.
Q: Could you comment on your experiences of the new cooperation model with SAP so far?
A: For me, the main advantage is that I’ve been able to use the SAP ONE Support Launchpad with my live data and in the context of my daily services and support tasks from the get-go. And I’m never operating under time pressure – because the entry point is available 24/7. I also appreciate having personal contact with the pilot project managers, because it makes the cooperation process so much easier: If I have feedback or questions, I can simply e-mail them. Which means that the lines of communication are short and the response times fast.
Thanks to the approach of introducing functions incrementally every five weeks, I also have the chance to take part in special feedback sessions where I can give my input, hear about other participants’ progress in the most recent pilot phase, and compare notes with my peers at other companies. This regular flow of feedback provided by me and by other participants ensures that the end-user perspective is always taken into account and that I – as an end-user myself – can influence the design of the solution.
Q: How would you like to see the cooperation model improve in the future?
A: In my view, this cooperation model is a real trend-setter, because it combines early collaboration between SAP and end users with short, regular feedback cycles. I’d really like to see this model applied to other projects as well.
In my capacity as spokesperson of the DSAG’s newly activated Support Portal Working Group, I intend to propose extending this cooperation model to other topics that the working group is involved in. In fact, the wheels are already in motion. We’ll inform the working group about the current status at our kick-off meeting on November 10, 2015 in Walldorf and reach a joint agreement on what action to take next.
I’m really looking forward to moving ahead with this new form of cooperation with SAP – both for the SAP ONE Support Launchpad and in our Support Portal Working Group – and to seeing it enhanced and applied to other topics for which the working group is responsible.
Learn more: SAP One Support launchpad website