companies want to grow again profitably, then they need to find new courage
for innovation. The contribution that information technology can and,
indeed, has to make in this respect is considerable.” This was the
appeal made by Alfons Wahlers, Chairman of DSAG, at the 2003 DSAG Annual
Congress in Bremen, Germany. Around 2,000 participants took part in the
discussions on future IT strategies at the Annual Congress under the banner
“ArchiTECHturing SAP: Orientation Towards
In almost every industry, budget-tightening has left many companies
missing out on the efficiencies that new solutions and technology can
bring across their enterprise. Now, with the overwhelming focus on technology
that not only offers functional enhancements but also combines these new
features with a quick return on investment (ROI), companies have strong
reasons to look, from both the business and technology perspectives, for
innovation where it’s most needed.
What Standards-Based Applications Bring to Your Business
What’s more, companies can even extend the impact of new technology
into the long-term by replacing the individual systems of the past with
As one example, Alfons Wahlers referred to the benefits in the forthcoming
updates and upgrades as companies move from SAP R/3 to SAP R/3 Enterprise,
mySAP ERP, or mySAP Business Suite — changes that affect almost
every SAP customer. At the keynotes and sessions throughout the DSAG Annual
Congress, companies had the chance to learn about new opportunities to
enhance and optimize their system landscapes in the short-term —
and at the same time ready themselves for future standards.
Putting an End to the Hidden Costs of an Inflexible IT Architecture
The evolution to heterogeneous IT landscapes at work in most companies
today and the ongoing transformation to a service-oriented architecture
were the focal points of the keynote by Michael Kleinemeier, Managing
Director of SAP Deutschland AG and President of the EMEA Central Region.
Kleinemeier emphasized that, in many companies, an inflexible and overly
complex IT structure was actually turning into a serious stumbling block
for innovation, and was thus measurably restricting companies in their
growth and in their competitiveness.
The focus on an “Orientation Towards New Standards” was also
reflected in the keynotes by Gerd Oswald and Claus Heinrich, members of
the SAP Executive Board, as they discussed both the challenges and advantages
of the new IT architectures and services based on Internet standards.
Flexible solutions are inevitable if new standards are to be integrated
technically and economically with the necessary upgrades or migrations
from SAP R/3. While cost pressures and budget limits are a factor in technological
innovation, they cannot and inevitably will not stem progress in the IT
The focus for most companies now is on thoroughly understanding the
consequences and benefits — in time, costs, and resources —
of embracing innovations in standards-based technology and solutions as
an investment in the short- and long-term.