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An Attendee Perspective: One-on-One with Drew Iacone of Hewlett Packard Enterprise

by Nicole D'Angelo, SAPinsider Assistant Editor

March 20, 2017

The heart of an SAPinsider event is its attendees. These attendees come from companies around the world and across industries, all with their own unique goals and projects to work on. They are the ones truly creating the value and energy of an event, and I was lucky enough to sit down with one during this year’s co-located BI 2017, HANA 2017, and Basis & SAP Administration 2017 events.

Drew Iacone is the VP of the Global SAP Practice and Alliance at Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE). In addition to having a robust SAP landscape and one of the largest SAP HANA deployments in the world, HPE offers a wide range of solutions and services designed to help SAP customers make the most of their SAP deployments. Iacone is one of the many employees of HPE devoted to this work. He heads up a global team of approximately 100 SAP pre-sales experts dedicated to helping SAP customers as they move through their journey to SAP HANA, SAP S/4HANA, and the many software-as-a-service solutions that SAP offers. In order to ensure his team has the breadth of knowledge it needs to best serve its customers, Iacone and 16 of his colleagues chose to attend the events together.

Building on a Foundation of Knowledge

The goal, according to Iacone, was to speak with attendees and learn from experts so that he and his team can better advise their own customers. For the newer members of Iacone’s team, that meant getting brought up to speed on the fundamentals of SAP HANA and how organizations are implementing it. He cited the case studies presented at the event as especially useful for helping the new members of his team learn about the challenges real companies face as they implement SAP HANA and how they can help companies overcome those challenges.

The more senior members of Iacone’s team were focused on strengthening their knowledge of advanced analytics, including predictive analytics, SAP BW/4HANA, and embedded analytics. Part of their goal was to learn more about the implementation steps and sequences that companies must follow when adopting these kinds of solutions. “These are some basic questions, and there’s really good information at these SAPinsider conferences on what processes and what sequences work,” said Iacone.   

Passing Expertise to Customers

HPE values giving customers the best possible advice to ensure that they succeed on their implementation projects. For that reason, part of Iacone’s focus at this conference was to obtain vetted, validated information around which to better form HPE’s points of view. Iacone said that his team wanted “to take billable advice and make it non-billable.” That, he explained, means that HPE wants to be able to offer sound, proven advice on best practices for SAP implementations as part of the pre-sales process. Customers should not have to feel as though they have to pay for basic best practices advice, according to Iacone. Instead, they should be able to obtain that advice before they enter into a contract with a service provider. SAPinsider events help service providers like HPE gain the background they need to offer that kind of trustworthy advice.

Iacone expressed confidence that attending an SAPinsider event helped him and his team learn a variety of invaluable insights that can then be shared with HPE’s customers. He spoke of the value of the content provided by SAPinsider and the trustworthiness of the experts available at the conference, saying that, “At several of the sessions I went to, clearly I was looking at what would be, in any circle, considered one of the best SAP experts that we could ever see.” Iacone’s opportunity to learn from these experts means that he and his team can now turn around and offer leading advice to their own clients.

To benefit from the wealth of knowledge available from HPE’s experts, you can register for the following webinars:

  • Big Bang vs Agile - Move to SAP S/4HANA faster, more easily and more affordably with HPE’s agile S4in4 approach (presented on March 16, 2017)   
  • Your Right Mix – HPE explores how Mission Critical Connections to your S/4 digital core influence your hybrid cloud deployment options (to be presented on March 30, 2017)
  • Your Apps | Your Data – Protect your SAP data without holding back your Digital Transformation and Hybrid Cloud agenda with HPE (to be presented on April 13, 2017}
  • Your Edge | Your Core – Bringing OT and IT together to implement a future-proofed IoT strategy with SAP and HPE (to be presented on April 27, 2017)
  • Best of Show – Bringing context to the innovations and announcements at SAPPHIRE NOW from SAP, the SAP partner ecosystem, and of course HPE (to be presented on May 25, 2017)

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