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Innovation Comes in All Sizes

SAP and Its Partners Create Next-Generation Innovation for Small and Midsize Enterprises

by Rodolpho Cardenuto | SAPinsider, Volume 18, Issue 4

November 6, 2017

As organizations continue their digital transformation journey, new opportunities are emerging for SAP customers of all sizes. Small and midsize enterprises (SMEs) are rapidly embracing digitization strategies and are just as likely to adopt cloud models as those in the large enterprise segment. These companies rely not only on SAP products and solutions, but also on its partners. Hear how through SAP’s Partner-First approach, SMEs are and gaining the right technology and capability for high growth needed to thrive in the digital economy and turn their cloud strategies into reality.

As organizations continue their digital transformation journey, new opportunities are emerging for SAP customers of all sizes, especially in the cloud. SAP’s cloud-based software can help customers create a new and live business experience that opens the door for innovation with cutting-edge technology and design thinking to completely reimagine the way they operate. With the cloud providing quick, easy, and cost-effective access to the latest features and functionality, the market has reached a tipping point where, in many countries around the world, cloud adoption is starting to overtake on-premise solutions.

Small and midsize enterprises (SMEs) in particular are rapidly embracing digital transformation strategies and are just as likely to adopt cloud models as those in the large enterprise segment. These companies — known as the general business (GB) segment of SAP’s business, which represents over a third of the addressable market potential for SAP — rely not only on SAP’s commercial sales team to purchase, implement, and support SAP products and solutions, but also on its partners.

Today, SAP has over 16,300 partners worldwide, and of these, more than 2,900 partners across all types are helping SAP turn its cloud strategy into reality. With SMEs forming the majority of customers served by SAP partners, partners have the reach and scale needed to take SAP solutions the last mile to SMEs, and SAP’s growing success in the GB market segment can in large part be attributed to our Partner-First approach.1

SAP’s cloud-based software can help customers create a new and live business experience that opens the door for innovation with cutting-edge technology and design thinking to completely reimagine the way they operate.

Putting Customers and Partners First

SAP’s Partner-First approach gives customers the best of all worlds. Because of the cloud, many midmarket customers find that they no longer have to employ the in-house resources required for on-premise solutions and that they can benefit from instant access to the latest technology available to better compete with larger enterprises. SMEs can take advantage of these benefits through cloud-based SAP software that can be acquired not only directly from SAP, but also from SAP’s ecosystem of partners, who can provide additional complementary offerings of their own to meet unique customer needs. In fact, SAP is one of the only vendors to offer partners the option to resell software for the cloud using commission- or referral-based models.

In addition, the SAP PartnerEdge Cloud Choice business model helps SAP partners accelerate cloud sales and profits — regardless of their engagement model or experience — by removing financial liability and risk, allowing partners to focus on promoting cloud adoption. This is true for both traditional partners working with SAP to deploy cloud solutions and selling a very broad range of SAP solutions, as well as for the “born in the cloud” partners that tend to be more specialized by solution. SAP is working to transform existing partners, but also attract new partners to provide the best customer experience possible.

When SAP’s customers and partners grow, SAP grows, and SAP is dedicated to the growth and success of its customers and partners in the cloud, on premise, or in a hybrid scenario — no matter their size.

Nothing Speaks Louder Than Customer Success

Whether you choose to deploy on premise or in the cloud, SAP customer success stories provide valuable insight to help small and midsize enterprises (SMEs) leverage the experience of others. Here are just a few customer stories that highlight the creative ways that companies use SAP technology to help drive growth and innovation:

For more success stories, visit www.sap.com/about/customer-testimonials/finder.html.

Helping SMEs Make the Move to the Cloud

With the agility, security, and cost savings inherent in cloud computing, it is no surprise that growing numbers of SMEs are choosing to move from traditional on-premise landscapes to cloud-based solutions. For upper GB customers — that is, SMEs with larger numbers in revenue and employees — this means a move to solutions such as SAP S/4HANA Cloud and SAP SuccessFactors solutions.

One SME, an automotive supplier with 8,000 employees across five continents, chose to implement SAP SuccessFactors solutions throughout its entire workforce due to the ease of deployment and global support. By leveraging the cloud, SAP was able to provide the necessary tools for the company’s global HR transformation. Another organization, an American healthcare nonprofit with 9,000 employees, was among the earliest adopters of SAP S/4HANA Cloud, choosing it for its compelling end-user experience via a multitenant cloud, which was critical for high adoption among its employees.

Enterprises with smaller numbers in revenue and employees — known as lower GB customers — are increasingly selecting SAP Business ByDesign as their cloud solution of choice, due to its easier implementation as compared to many alternatives. One North American bakery with about 200 employees wanted to avoid having in-house IT, and managed to engage with an SAP partner to implement SAP Business ByDesign in just three months, dramatically streamlining its manufacturing and distribution process. This is just one example of why SAP Business ByDesign has seen a surge in new customers, now extending across 120 countries. 

Going Hybrid with SMEs

All companies are different, and SAP recognizes that one approach does not fit all. Hybrid scenarios are commonplace with SME customers because customers have the choice of combining on premise with the cloud in a hybrid scenario. SAP Business One is an ideal fit for SMEs requiring a hybrid deployment.

An Asian animal feed manufacturer chose a hybrid deployment after it recognized the need for a consolidated IT platform that would streamline operations and increase transparency for the business, its distributors, and the farmers. Implementing SAP Business One enabled the company to increase its operational efficiency by as much as 60%.

With the help of its partners, SAP is providing the right technology and capability for high growth that SMEs need to thrive in the digital economy.

An Engine for Growth

Each year, SAP expands its presence within the business community, working to help emerging enterprises of all sizes grow and succeed. Whatever the region or line of business, whether small or midsize, indirect or direct, cloud or on premise, GB is SAP’s growth engine. As one of the pillars of the SAP 2020 Growth Strategy, GB is expected to double its contribution to SAP’s overall revenue in 2020. With the help of its partners, SAP is providing the right technology and capability for high growth that SMEs need to thrive in the digital economy.


 

1 For more on SAP’s Partner-First approach, see my previous SAPinsider articles “Collaboration Leads to Success,” “Value Drives Success,” and “An Invitation to Innovation” available at SAPinsiderOnline.com. [back

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Rodolpho Cardenuto
Rodolpho Cardenuto

President
Global Channels and
General Business
SAP



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