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Strength in Numbers — New DSAG Initiatives for Maximum Influence

by Mario Gunter | SAPinsider

January 1, 2003

by Mario Gunter, DSAG Headquarters SAPinsider - 2003 (Volume 4), January (Issue 1)

Mario Günter,
DSAG Headquarters

With over 1,000 members and close to 2,000 attendees at our annual Congress, the numbers tell the story of DSAG’s growth. As the number of DSAG Process and Industry Groups increases, DSAG is supporting these groups, helping them to identify key concerns and to work on issues with governmental and industry organizations, bringing our members’ most important challenges to light.

DSAG Focus Group Looks to Clarify Governmental Auditing Requirements

Several DSAG Work Groups have joined together concerning the new German legislation on data access with regard to auditing of digital documents and records. This law calls for German companies to provide auditors with an increased access to business data. In response to concerns from DSAG members, DSAG’s FI/CO-related panels have formed a Focus Group that is front-and-center on this issue. This group has met over the past few months to seek agreement between government representatives, auditors, and businesses on the final specifications for auditing-relevant data. First results and recommendations to DSAG members have been released.

Work Groups Identify Shared Issues

DSAG Process and Industry Groups periodically recognize areas of overlap — what we call “cross-cutting” areas. Take the HR arena, for example. DSAG has an HR Work Group, as well as a Healthcare group and a Public Administration group with HR Focus Groups of their own. These groups have their own set of industry- and solution-specific issues, but they also inevitably share some common concerns. Rather than send SAP multiple requests from multiple groups, “cross-cutting” identifies areas where Work Groups can bundle their concerns for a more powerful and compelling impact. DSAG is devoting staff resources at DSAG headquarters to formally help identify, encourage, and support these shared endeavors.

DSAG and SAP Move Concerns “Up the Chain”

When it comes to bringing general concerns that affect the greater SAP community to SAP, DSAG has developed a set of simple, common-sense processes to present issues directly to SAP representatives, and if necessary, to the SAP executive board itself. This simple model is now formalized in DSAG with the full support of the SAP Executive Board. Using this model, if a Work Group cannot resolve a question through their SAP representative, we can determine whether to advance it to DSAG’s contacts at the management level of SAP Germany, or return it to the Work Group for resolution. If the problem remains unresolved within SAP Germany, the DSAG board may forward concerns to Claus Heinrich, our executive sponsor on the SAP board.

These very different initiatives have a common goal: to get at the top-priority, highly strategic concerns of our members, and turn these issues into effective action. The result is working groups that maximize DSAG’s influence by focusing their work, and SAP’s attention, on what matters most to the DSAG community.

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