A Creative Way to Allow Users to Modify Org Chart Presentations – In Real Time

Now this is something I don’t hear every day in my work on the SAP App Center supporting SAP partners: a partner app was so well received that it got a standing ovation.

“I felt like a rock star,” said Sebastian Bos, head of Product Management HCM – Executive Solution Architect at Nakisa Inc., when I interviewed him about the Nakisa Hanelly app, which allows for streamlining organization design and visualizing organizational charts.

“I remember the reaction that I received the first time I shared this application to one of our early corporate customers. When I showed them how to use live data to make modifications to their own presentations in real time, that’s when I got the standing ovation,” explained Bos. “It’s something those in the audience were unable to do previously.”

And obviously, it’s a feature badly needed by business users, regardless of whether they are an HR administrator, line-of-business manager, or executive trying to understand the impact of organizational changes through what-if scenarios. Hanelly lets users visualize current and future structures with relevant HR analytics, interacting with the HCM data in their core cloud or on-premise applications.

Thumbs Up for Collaborating on What-If Scenarios

The breakthrough that generated all the excitement, Bos explained, is the ability to make hypothetical changes using live data and see the impact immediately right there in PowerPoint slides of a Visio chart. For example, a user might have a mandate to build a new R&D department or reduce headcount by a certain percentage. They can experiment with different approaches while collaborating with other stakeholders, making modifications together and discussing the potential results of their decisions.

Same thing if a company is going through any major business change – like a merger or acquisition. Users can visualize the possibilities for combining similar functional areas and reassigning employees where their skills sets might be better utilized. And users can make sure the organization is meeting “static control targets” for headcount balance, which Bos explained is important to prevent one manager from having too many direct reports. This is terminology he understands well as head of Product Management for the HCM line of business at Nakisa.

For reporting, HCM data can be used with Hanelly to create visualizations showing total salary for a division, total projected T&E costs for a sales organization, male/female ratio at different management levels, diversity targets, and so on and so on.

Security is also essential to the app, given regulations regarding employees’ private data, which vary by country. And security and access control features prevent salary information from being shared unlawfully, for example, even internally.

Round of Applause for Nakisa

I was intrigued to know why Bos, who has been with Nakisa since 2001, speaks so passionately about this product and the company. “It’s the opportunity to help people solve their daily business problems,” he said. Finding a business problem and solving it is, in fact, the whole reason for Nakisa’s existence, and that’s why it’s been so successful. “It’s those ‘aha’ moments when we recognized, for example, that the only tools available for this purpose were server-based. In the HR arena, where data is changing constantly, our CEO realized the need for a visualization tool – and only a cloud-based solution can provide real-time updates.”

Bos added that the tool had to be easy to use, from an entry-level HR assistant to the executive suite.

As for the company itself, even though Nakisa has grown to some 300 employees, located at headquarters in Montreal and regional offices in the United States, Germany, Pakistan and Singapore, there’s still a weekly conference call to introduce the new people. Confirming that sense of camaraderie was Bos’ colleague Gail MacGillivray, marketing product owner for the Hanelly solution, who has been with the company just a few months.

And Cheers for SAP App Center

I asked Bos and MacGillivray about the decision to include Hanelly on SAP App Center. I should note that Nakisa is a long-time SAP partner, with one of the first SAP solution extensions, applications rebranded by SAP and sold pre-integrated with SAP software to serve an unmet need in the market. Hanelly is not a solution extension, but regardless, it integrates with SAP software and is a perfect fit for the SAP App Center.

“It so quick and easy to send SAP customers looking for an app like Hanelly directly to SAP App Center,” added MacGillivray. “SAP customers know Nakisa, so there is an instant confidence factor. They can buy it with a one-click option, and we offer a 14-day free trial.”

Let’s hear it for this great new app from Nakisa!