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#SAPPHIRENOW 2012: Day 2 Observations

by Lucy Swedberg

May 15, 2012

by Lucy Swedberg, Sr. Director, SAPinsider and insiderPROFILES


Always the spice of life, variety was also a major theme at SAPPHIRE NOW's Day 2 here in Orlando. As I traveled from customer meeting to partner discussion to SAP demo, I couldn't help but think: Cookie-cutter IT approaches don't make much sense any more. Both on the SAPPHIRE show floor and in the SAP portfolio, there's truly something for everyone.

A few examples:

  • In his "SAP Runs SAP" session in the Mobility campus, SAP's CIO Oliver Bussmann reviewed all the different mobile devices SAP has deployed to its employees -- 17,000 iPads, 19,000 BlackBerry devices, thousands of iPhones, and a growing number of Android devices and Windows mobile phones. Central to SAP's own mobile strategy is the idea of choice -- giving SAP employees the option to use the device that best meets their needs and habits. And IT simply must support all those choices.
  • I attended a live broadcast session in which Under Armour discussed its adoption and use of SuccessFactors to manage both job applicants and employee performance (except, Under Armour doesn't use the word employees; it prefers "teammates"). This cloud-based talent management strategy works for Under Armour. For a rapidly growing company that needed to scale its hiring and performance management processes quickly, the cloud was the right option. This approach might not make sense for all customers, but it was the right move for Under Armour.
  • At any given moment on the SAPPHIRE show floor, there may be a dozen different sessions and three dozen different demos going on. Yet no matter the time slot, each campus, theater, or demo pod draws its own specialized c rowd -- be it to tour partner-developed mobile apps, take HANA for a test-drive, or focus on some good ol' nuts and bolts like how to accelerate your financial close process. Truly something for everyone.
  • After a lovely global communications reception at The Pub, some colleagues and I strolled around The Pointe complex, looking for our next stop. Nearly every bar, club, and restaurant in the entire complex was hosting a private partner reception or event -- and all parties were filled to the brim. Proof yet again that variety (including variety among ecosystem vendors and partners) is the spice of SAPPHIRE life.

Another exciting day here in Orlando. I'm looking forward to what Hasso and Vishal have to add to the conversation tomorrow. Any predictions?

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