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Real-time in action Dr Vishal Sikka, member of the executive board, technology and innovation, SAP, outlined first-hand testimonials given by companies such as Casino and Unilever on the benefits of SAP real-time computing technology and how it transformed their businesses. “We have been rethinking the world of retail together with partners and customers,” Sikka said. “Features that enhance and streamline the purchasing experience.” Casino, an international retail group with 200,000 employees across 11,000 stores in nine countries, relayed SAP’s assistance in providing the company with a “precision retailing approach – multi-channel, consistent, personalised customer experience with interaction, in real-time on a oneto-one basis”. Warren Burns from Unilever said new SAP technologies have given the company the ability to take processes that are important differentiators, own them entirely, and build intuitive user interfaces over the top of traditional ERP and CRM processes or tools.

Key announcements

Actor Gabriel Byrne opened the event

Bridgette Chambers, CEO, Americas SAP Users Group

SAP and Microsoft integrate virtualisation and cloud After naming Microsoft ‘SAP Global Technology Partner of the Year’ at SAPPHIRE NOW 2011, the two software giants announced plans to improve integration with enhanced access for .NET developers and improved interoperability between the companies’ cloud and virtualisation technologies to promote application innovation and flexibility without disruption. This level of access will help redefine the SAP/Microsoft developer landscape with shorter development cycles, lower costs and openness into core applications. Microsoft and SAP are also planning to provide integration between upcoming landscape management software from SAP, Microsoft System Center and Microsoft Windows Server Hyper-V technology, bringing greater agility for cloud management and deployments. “Building on the successful partnership with Duet Enterprise, SAP and Microsoft plan to offer interoperability and a native development experience, so that a .NET developer can easily build applications in visual studio that run across the SAP and Microsoft platforms,” said Sikka. “Interoperability is a core advantage that SAP and Microsoft can deliver to the customers we both share.”

Gateway vastly extends reach to new users SAPPHIRE NOW also served as the lauchpad for SAP NetWeaver Gateway technology, an open, standards-based framework for extending the reach of business software to an exponentially larger number of users, developers and environments, enabling customers to free up their SAP applications from the confines of the desktop and access them from any environment, tool or device. The technology also enables developers to create new applications using the

development tools of their choice. “Using this technology framework, companies will have the ultimate flexibility to develop and deploy solutions geared for the way their people work that are easy to build and simple to use without disrupting their existing IT landscapes,” said a company spokesperson.

Innovation for Business Suite customers The road map for Innovations 2010 was delivered this time last year, and the announcement of the general availability of the software across all core SAP Business Suite 7 applications was made at the 2011 event. The enhancements enable customers to switch on new software features for unique industry and line-of-business processes, without disrupting operations to undergo system upgrades. The software was shipped to over 450 customers during the ramp-up phase, more than 100 above target, with customers running ERP 6.0 now able to activate more than 300 new business functions including: • Master Data Governance: ensuring consistency of data on suppliers and materials despite complexity of business networks, environments and processes; • Shared Services Framework: for increased process efficiency and significant cost savings across financial and human resources (HR) operations; and • Convergent Charging: with new features that further support the mass billing demands of utilities and telecommunications companies, simplifying the complexities of managing multiple products, divergent pricings and widespread promotions.

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Inside SAP Winter 2011  

All the latest on SAP in Australia and New Zealand.