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On 26 February 2013, both Centers for Very Large Business Applications (CVLBA) Magdeburg and Munich participated together with a group of students at an eight hours lasting Design Thinking Jam in Leipzig. This workshop was offered and leaded from SAP in the run-up to the Wirtschaftsinformatik 2013 conference (WI 2013).

After a short introductory round, Henning Schmitz from the SAP Innovation Center in Potsdam presented two impressing prototypes being built on SAP HANA: The Bigpoint Artifact is able to monitor and control the massively multiplayer online game Battlestar Galactica. The second application is an electronic medical knowledge base which was developed together with the Berlin hospital Charité. Those two prototypes were impressive results of a successful application of the Design Thinking method.

Then, Carsten Becker guided us through the Design Thinking method: In each of the six process steps we had to perform the following tasks within a limited time period:

  1. Understand: Sharpen the topic and clarify the goals and target group.
  2. Observe: Create a questionnaire and get information by interviewing different people.
  3. Point of View: Synthesize all information and create typical persons and list their needs.
  4. Ideate: Brainstorm functionalities and order them in different categories. Then, identify the most important functionalities.
  5. Prototype: Draft a model of your prototype (screen dialog drafts and architecture design).
  6. Test: Present and motivate your prototype.

In those 8 hours, three teams worked on different scenarios and presented on the following day their story and product to the mid tier panel at the WI conference. The topics were:

  • Education: Redesign the information and interaction experience for parents in the context of schools.
  • Better my Journey: Redesign the service experience for commuters and city inhabitants in the context of getting around in the city.
  • Free Parking ad-hoc: Redesign the service experience for visitors of the city or big events in the context of finding a parking lot.

All in all, we learned how to use Design Thinking process as a tool understanding abstract problems and creating conceptual artifacts.


Get more impressions from Design Thinking Jam @ WI 2013 | Facebook (thanks to Juliane and the SAP University Alliances Team for the pictures) and from SAP DT 2013 Leipzig - a set on Flickr (thanks to Holger from CVLBA Munich for sharing his pictures).