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At a recent SAP All Cloud Connect event, Sven Denecken (GVP Cloud Solutions) presented a session entitled “Making Change Your Advantage”) that included slides that depict some shifts in SAP’s Cloud strategy.  I’d like to take a quick look at a few of these slides and provide some additional insight into why I find them interesting.

SAP Cloud Portfolio

Points of interest

  • SAP is moving from a very broad message (solutions in “HR, Customer, Procurement, Finance”) that was present as recently as Q1 2014 to a more specific message with new elements (“Supply Chain Management”, “SCM, PLM, Manufacturing”)  and more differentiated offers for other areas (commerce, customer engagement).
  • The inclusion of recent acquisitions of FieldGlass and hybris in the portfolio is an important addition and shows how the portfolio is evolving based on these purchases.  See Why is still missing but I don’t know if that acquisition has closed yet. My assumption is that it will be combined with hybris in the “omni-channel commerce” offering.
  • Currently, FieldGlass is only associated with Procurement offering.  I’d expect it to also be part of the HR offering along with SuccessFactors.
  • This is first time that I’m seen Manufacturing explicitly mentioned in the Cloud Portfolio.  There are already other active competitors in this area. I don’t know whether HANA Enterprise Cloud (HEC) Suite on Hana installations truly meet the requirements of this sector. I’d like to see a cloud-based version of MII.
  • I’m missing more of a focus on Industry (yes – I know CRM  on HANA for Industries is mentioned). At the Sapphire, the Industry Cloud was announced and I’d expect more industry-specific offerings. It could be that such offers originate from the ecosystem rather than SAP itself and thus aren't included in this slide.
  • The fact that Simple Finance is present in the HEC and the Public Cloud is a bit curious. I asked Sven about this on Twitter:

You might well be seeing Simple Finance on Azure or AWS at some point.  It might also be the first application of a series of “Simple” applications that could use this deployment option.  It is however a bit curious that ‘Suite on HANA’ won’t have the same deployment option – it appears to be restricted to the Managed Cloud.

Differentiating vs Non-differentiating Processes

Points of interest

  • Although I find the distinction between the two process types useful, I don’t know whether I agree in their association with a particular Cloud type (public vs. managed cloud).  I don’t understand why differentiating processes couldn’t be present in the Public Cloud. The definition of which processes are differentiating is also industry or perhaps customer-specific.  For example,  some companies (IT outsourcing companies?) might view, HCM as a differentiating process.  I also don’t know whether non-differentiating processes are so depicted based on the assumption that they are more highly standardized and thus more likely to be placed in a Public Cloud.  CRM.  for example, is described as being a non-differentiating process yet CRM on HANA is offered as part of the Managed Cloud.
  • Although the depiction of Managed Cloud and Industry Cloud together might be a bit confusing, the Industry Cloud would most likely be part of the HEC making the association more logical.
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