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Welcome to the SAP Jam release 1508 information posting.

Preface: Features and functionality in SAP Jam varies by edition of SAP Jam licensed.   References to integrations with other SAP, SuccessFactors and third party products require licensing of the respective products and are not included with SAP Jam. 

The features and functionality mentioned here are those topics that the SAP Jam team feels are the most notable and those items our customers would like to know about. There are many more “smaller” capabilities in this and every release of SAP Jam that simply can’t be called out due to time and space. Be sure to review the release notes for more information about the items included in this release, big and small.

For release 1508, we have four main themes:

  • Driving next generation learning and training
  • Streaming processes to get work done
  • Supporting enterprise customer environments
  • Empowering users

Driving next generation learning and training with in-context course information

To start, we’ll be talking about how SAP Jam is at the core of driving next generation learning within organizations, particularly with those that have deployed SuccessFactors Learning as their learning management system (LMS).

Updated learning and training work patterns plus integration to SAP SuccessFactors Learning for course information within SAP Jam groups

As part of release 1508, we’re excited to announce the availability of a new integration to SuccessFactors Learning, bringing real-time course information to SAP Jam.  With course information from the LMS displayed directly within the SAP Jam group, learners can now collaborate around and about the course, providing contextual information to the users.

For course learners

For learners enrolled in the course, they can use it simply as a social and collaborative environment to come together, augmenting the formal structure of the LMS with the informal, social and collaborative aspects of SAP Jam.  Learners can help each other with assignments or engage in a discussion about the topic.

For prospective learners

For prospective learners, or people who are just exploring the course to see if it would be something they’d like to enroll in, they can ask group members about what they think of the course, or even if they think it’s the right course for what they are looking for.  Then, if appropriate, they can view upcoming scheduled course offerings directly within SAP Jam.

For instructors

Instructors benefit from the new integration as well!  Because SAP Jam now knows about courses from the LMS, an instructor can use the business record detail widget to display details about one course (the course tied to the group) or use the business record list widget to promote one or more other courses the learners may be interested in or related to the current course. See the screenshot above to see this in action.

This is in addition to the existing integration SAP Jam already has with SuccessFactors Learning whereby learners can be automatically invited to SAP Jam groups that the instructor has setup for the course, making it easy for learners to collaborate, discuss topics or even course materials before they have attended their first lesson.

Additionally, the existing Education Center and Training Room work patterns have been updated to support the newly available course information.  If your company has integrated SuccessFactors Learning with SAP Jam, course information will now be able to be displayed in newly created and existing groups. The above capabilities require a subscription to SuccessFactors Learning.

But what if your organization doesn’t use SuccessFactors Learning as the LMS?  No problem – SAP Jam has APIs already in place to make it possible for your organization to connect your LMS to SAP Jam for similar functionality. To do this, a system integrator or developer would need to create the integration.  More information on SAP Jam’s APIs and integration capabilities is available in the SAP Jam developer area.

Streamlining processes to get work done

Integration to SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central for time off notifications

Along with the SuccessFactors Learning integration, we are also announcing a new business process integration with SuccessFactors Employee Central for time off notifications.  If your organization uses Employee Central for requesting time-off, and has integrated Employee Central to SAP Jam, SAP Jam will see your time off notification and ask you if you would like to be indicated as “being away” in SAP Jam.  If enabled, the time off is added to your away alerts (more on this in the next topic). This capability requires a subscription to SuccessFactors Employee Central.

Away alerts

In addition to the previously mentioned time off notifications triggered by SuccessFactors Employee Central, SAP Jam users can now indicate their own being “away” within SAP Jam.   Where a “time off” within SuccessFactors Employee Central would generally be used for vacation or for personal reasons, being marked as “away” within SAP Jam can be used for work-related activities as well - business trips where you might not have access to email or phone for example.

Away alerts within SAP Jam are set on your profile page in a new section above expertise and appear in most places where your name or profile information appears – hover cards, @-mentions, event invitations, calendars and private messages.  Anyone that views or tries to use one of the mentioned capabilities would see a new message within the user interface indicating the away alert.   For example, in the screen shown, there are two away alerts set: the first is Aug 3 from 12-5pm, and the second is from Aug 10 to Aug 12.

The second screen shows Marcus being @-mentioned in a feed post, and the person selector shows the away alert next to his name (“Marcus Hoff is away”), directly within context. This way, the coworker knows that they may not get a timely response, so they can direct their question to another person.

SAP Jam activity hub update: Microsoft Yammer support + toast notifications

As part of our ongoing support of the SAP Jam activity hub desktop client, we are happy to announce support for Microsoft® Yammer as another supported provider, joining the previously announced IBM® Connections.  The SAP Jam activity hub is a desktop activity feed aggregator bringing together the activity feeds from the different enterprise social networks together, in one convenient application.

This allows organizations that have multiple enterprise social networks to allow their employees on the different networks to still have visibility into the activities, without having to have multiple applications open.

Additionally, we have added a customer-requested capability of desktop “toast” notifications. Toasts appear from the system tray and popup informing you of activity, without having the application window open.

Document mirroring

Document mirroring is a new and unique document management capability that we expect our customers to take advantage of immediately.  Mirrored documents are read-only virtual copies of uploaded content that are linked back to the source for updates.  Instead of copying a document to multiple groups to accommodate group privacy and security, you can simply upload your document anywhere within SAP Jam, and SAP Jam will take care of the relationship between all mirrored copies and the source for you, behind the scenes.  This allows you to focus on your work instead of having to worry about the logistics of group security and privacy.   

Mirrored documents have their own activities, feeds, annotations and metadata including tags. Annotations and comments in one group remain only in that group.  However, if the source document owner (or group admin of the group the source lives in) updates the source document, the new version is automatically pushed to all mirrored copies.

Feed muting

Feed muting allows users to selectively “mute” a feed thread – replies to a specific comment on an idea for example. This helps users filter their feed to the activity they find most useful, but if needed, a topic can be unmuted by going to the first post of the thread.

Move content between groups

While this may seem like a smaller capability to call out in this blog post, it impacts many users and is one of our most common feature requests – so we’re happy to make people know about it.  This capability will save people a lot of time, by simply making it possible (and easy) to move a document to a new group, while also maintaining the metadata and comments attached to the document.

Supporting enterprise customer environments

Box and SAP Mobile Documents, cloud edition as enterprise content providers

We have two new content providers in this release: Box® and SAP Mobile Documents, cloud edition. These integrations provide access to documents stored in the remote repositories similarly to how our previously announced Microsoft® SharePoint® integration works – the remote repository, folders and files within it are available within SAP Jam for browsing, viewing, downloading, annotation and commenting-on, all without having to access the remote repository directly.

User storage management

This new capability allows company administrators to automatically purge content and groups that have been sitting in user trash after a configurable period of time.  This allows deleted content to be within a customer’s compliance policies for data retention.

Terms of service versioning and reporting

At the request of our customers, we’ve added version control to custom terms of service and extranet terms of service (for external users).  There is also a new company admin report to show timestamps of user acceptance of each version of terms of service.  This provides customers the ability to produce evidence of adherence to national policies governing privacy and other regulation.

Empowering users

All languages available to everyone

As part of this release, SAP has decided to make a significant change to the licensing of language packs for SAP Jam – we’re now including access to all languages we support to all customers.  The licensing of language packs no longer apply to SAP Jam.  This allows us to bring, what we feel, personalization capabilities that all users should be able to do – choose the language they want to use with SAP Jam.

Right-to-left language support

One of the most important changes to SAP Jam is the new support for RTL (right-to-left) languages. When the user selects an RTL language, the entire SAP Jam user interface becomes “flipped” to support the language. SAP Jam then automatically handles the content if the user is viewing mixed-language content.

Five new languages

Along with making all languages available to all users, we’re announcing availability of five new languages, two of which are right-to-left:  Arabic and Hebrew as well as Hindi, Hungarian and Welsh.

Accessibility enhancements

The SAP Jam team has been making many progressive updates to the user interface for quite some time.  With this release we are happy to announce support for screen readers for the hard of seeing.  We have added metadata and tool-tips throughout the user interface, we have added mouse-less or keyboard-driven interaction and “tab” key support to jump between elements. Additionally, we have added visual indications of element focus to make it easier to do feed postings and editing content.

We have also improved support for operating system and browser-based accessibility improvements such as high-contrast mode viewing. The screenshot to the right shows how SAP Jam appears using Google Chrome's built-in high contrast viewing mode.

Wiki editor enhancements

The final topic we’re calling out in this posting is the major upgrade to the wiki editor and the mini-editor used in text widgets for overview pages.  The upgrade will bring improved usability and bug fixes, particularly to tables and lists and adding new functionality such as a font previewer and more supported font sizes.

Special service announcement

  • Customers with SAP Jam, advanced plus edition now have the ability to collaborate with external parties such as customers, partners and vendors.  When creating a new group, you will now have the ability to select a new option – “external”.    Existing groups can easily be changed to this group type as well. This feature is not enabled by default, and must be activated by your company administrator (from the SAP Jam admin console).    To get you off to a fast start, we’re also including 100 external user licenses as well! If needed, customers can purchase additional external user licenses by contacting their SAP representative.

For more information about any of the topics mentioned here today, existing customers can contact SAP Jam support via their normal service request mechanism.

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