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Eventful Conferences has spent the last four months conducting extensive customer centric research with over 40 Chemicals organizations using SAP and 60+ individuals across North America. These individuals came from a wide range of functional areas within the chemicals industry including supply chain, manufacturing, IT, development, and leadership roles across organizations. Both business and IT were represented in our interviews and research. To balance the customer research, we also spoke with partners and SAP to hear their perspectives.

We asked these chemicals professionals, through both round table discussions and one-on-one conversation, what challenges they faced day to day and their thoughts on the most pertinent issues facing chemicals organizations. The Best Practices for Chemicals Conference will strive to address each challenge, pain point and trend by providing solution-oriented presentations, backed by specific evidence and packaged to provide the audience with clear takeaways on how to achieve similar results.

In this issue we will discuss the strategic importance and value of technology. If you missed or would like to revisit the previous entries in our series, please follow the links below.

Strategic Imperatives for the Chemical Industry - Part 1: Analytics – Data & Decisions

  1. Technology – Strategic & Future

The value of any IT migration is not only in its use case, but also in its business value (ROIs) and its sustainability over the long-term – the ‘why’. While the use case may be clear, many companies worry that the cost of the migration will not lead to an ROI by the time that a new investment or a new migration is needed. Further, our research found that many in the chemical communities wanted to better understand the path pre-migration and post-migration that would allow them to make the transition with limited disruptions to their business – the ‘how’.

Specifically, organizations are interested to see case studies of those running a fully functional S/4 HANA system. Both S/4 Finance and S/4 Logistics offer significant promise and have a clearly established use case, an obvious “why”. Organizations want to see it in action to understand the “how” more fully. Additionally, SAP’s announcements and demonstrations of Leonardo have generated interest in what this IoT-powered technology can offer to the industry.

  • What is the long-term roadmap for S/4HANA, and how do I know what my future investments will need to be? In other words, what is the sustainability of this investment?

  • Can SAP Best Practices help me through this transition? How do I best leverage these?

  • How do we migrate with the least impact to my business?

  • How do I deal with the customizations or workarounds I already have in place? Should I reconsider my processes and make them better meet the software, instead of making my software meet the process?

  • What sort of change management will need to be facilitated to make this implementation as powerful as possible?

  • What are the opportunities presented by Leonardo and how can I capitalize on them within my technology plan?

  • How will other new technologies like Blockchain and edge computing impact my business?

  • What opportunities and limitations exist in the cloud? How will licenses and vendors affect my business model?

  • What is the migration path onto the cloud and what are the varying specifications? How do I get my IT ready for the migration?

  • How does the move to the cloud impact my IT department - what personnel needs and skill sets do I need to consider?

  • How can I handle important industry needs – ex. ITAR – in the cloud?

To get answers to these and many more questions view the agenda and register now! for the Best Practices for Chemicals Conference, being held in Austin/TX on March 6-7, 2018!

We look forward to see you there!
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