For SAP customers to get the biggest value from their SAP investments, it’s important for them to support scalable, rapidly deployable solutions and optimized system landscapes. insiderPROFILES recently conducted an interview with José Duarte, the President of Global Services at SAP, who noted a sense of urgency for companies to reinvest in their SAP backbones but cautioned that “Customers’ foundational systems have to be rock solid before adding the highly sought mobility and analytics layers.” 1
This caveat applies not only to a company’s base SAP systems, but to the underlying IT infrastructure on which these systems depend. Unfortunately, most organizations’ SAP application printing systems are anything but rock solid. Reliable document printing and output management solutions play an important — but often overlooked — role in business optimization and cost-cutting efforts.
Managing SAP Output
Documents and other output from your SAP applications are vital to the efficient operation of your business. However, many companies entrust their mission-critical output to Windows print servers that were not originally designed to meet the demands of SAP enterprise customers. Printing failures must be resolved quickly and efficiently before they delay a business process, and native Windows print functions simply do not provide the tools required to address these issues appropriately.
Enterprise output management (EOM) solutions help organizations streamline business processes by providing a simple, centralized method of managing SAP system-generated shipping manifests, pick lists, barcode labels, and other critical output. By relieving SAP servers of the burden of printing, EOM software increases overall system performance. EOM solutions also improve end-user and IT staff productivity while lowering the hard costs associated with printing.
EOM and ROI
In a recent IDC white paper sponsored by Levi, Ray & Shoup, Inc. (LRS), entitled “Business Value of Output Management,”2 global market intelligence provider IDC interviewed 10 companies that had implemented EOM software for assured document delivery across the organization. Although the companies varied in market sector and size (the median employee count was 11,000), IDC reported that “All 10 experienced substantial cost reduction and productivity enhancement totaling on average $53,868 per 100 managed printers annually.”
The study quantified the benefits received by companies running EOM software from LRS. IDC analysts reported that for each of the 100 printers managed by the LRS solution, customers:
- Reduced IT labor costs by $28,771 annually by improving staff productivity
- Enhanced user productivity by $4,353 annually through reduced print services downtime and help desk issues
- Lowered annual business capital and operational print services costs by $20,744
With a median total of 1,803 printers, the average calculated savings for each company exceeded $970,000 per year. The report concluded that the LRS solution generated a three-year return on investment of 310% and a payback period of less than six months.
In 1982, LRS developed the first EOM software that scaled to meet the needs of the largest mainframe installations in the world. Since 1997, LRS has been delivering certified output solutions that help SAP customers meet their service-level agreements while reducing the costs of document delivery.
For more information about LRS or to download a copy of the IDC white paper, visit www.VPSX.com.
John Runions (firstname.lastname@example.org) is the Director of Worldwide Business Development and Alliance Sales for the Enterprise Output Management group at Levi, Ray & Shoup, Inc. John has 15 years of experience in the EOM industry and has spent the last 10 years working with SAP customers to help them solve complex printing challenges with enterprise applications.