Wednesday, December 30, 2015

New EU privacy regulations are coming

The EU's current data protection laws date from 1995, before the internet came into widespread use and mobile phones were not as common.

A lot has changed since 1995: Today mobile phones are common, people access data via their smartphones and tablets, and data is stored in the cloud. Personal data like e.g. name, address, date of birth, telephone numbers and pictures are shared on daily basis, whether to open a bank account, book a flight, apply for a job or to get a fitness card.

Time for an update

On December 15th 2015, the European Union officials have reached an agreement on a new European digital-privacy law, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). 

The texts of the regulation must be definitively approved by the European Parliament and EU and the Regulation is planned to take effect after a transition period of two years.

The regulation is applicable if the data controller (enterprises that own the data) or data processor (e.g. cloud provider) or the data subject (person) is based in the EU.
The Regulation also applies to organizations based outside the European Union if they process personal data of EU residents.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Cloud for Customer - 3 survey design tips

One of the functionalities in SAP Cloud for Customer (C4C) is surveys.
Surveys are checklists or questionnaires that can be centrally maintained and automatically assigned to Customer Visit Reports. The survey maintenance offers a wide range of options.
This article focuses on three tips for survey maintenance.

Tip 1: Translation of surveys.

When you have users logging on in different languages, you should be aware of the fact that when you forget (or choose not) to translate a survey, the user logging on in the different language will end up with a form without the descriptions.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

C4C iPad app; Which app should I choose? Native (HTML5) or Responsive (Fiori) !!

Currently there are 2 C4C iPad apps available in the App store. The so called Native app which is based on HTML5 and the Responsive one, based on Fiori. The first app is available since the 1402 release and the Responsive app became available in the 1502 release. In my last project we had to choose the app for the endusers, in our case sales representatives, to work with. The decision was made in October, so based on the 1508 release of C4C. In this blog I will explain the differences (related to our scope) between the apps, approach, our choice and the reason behind this.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Marketing Attributes in C4C

An important feature of Cloud for Customer (C4C) is maintaining the characteristics of customers and prospects. Based on my experience in multiple projects, it is common practice to capture customer characteristics on newly created tabs and extension fields.
This can add up to a lot of fields, for example, different types of customers could have different characteristics. For example, an Automotive company might have different characteristics compared to for instance a Retail company. So even though they are both customers maintained in the system, the relevant data to be maintained might differ. This might lead to a lot of custom fields... Or is there a way out?

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Practical tips for implementing SAP Cloud for Customer

What are you facing when implementing SAP Cloud for Customer? How do you ensure a solid integration in your existing system landscape?
Jop Vening lead many C4C implementations, and will share his experiences in this article on C4C implementations.

When implementing SAP C4C, we use a ‘SAP Launch’ based approach. This methodology consists of the phases Prepare, Realise, Verify, Launch. I will guide you through these four phases and highlight a few important steps.

Phase 1: Prepare

In this phase, you think about the processes that need to be supported and the functionalities you need. This is what would be considered the blueprint phase in the traditional waterfall model. 

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

SAP Hybris Marketing: Context matters!

Let me introduce you to SAP Hybris Marketing.

SAP Hybris Marketing is a must-have if you are looking to keep up with the global shift in marketing execution. Despite the fact that mass-marketing is still considered effective for the generation of brand-awareness, maximizing the effectiveness of the marketing funnel can now be taken to the next level using state-of-the-art software like SAP Hybris Marketing.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

All about the HANA Cloud Platform.

As SAP's cloud strategy is running faster than Usain, we see new tools popping up by the blink of an eye. An important player in the game is HCP, also known as the HANA Cloud Platform.
Let's take a look at what this so-called 'platform' consists of, and if possible, check out what's under the hood.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

SAP Cloud for Service

Most organisations using SAP Cloud for Customer focus on its sales capabilities. A whole other area of useful functionality is a blind spot for most of the current customers. With this I'm referring to Cloud for Service, which covers a broad spectrum of service related processes. A couple of weeks ago, the service topic was already partly touched in the blog about Customer Service for Utilities, yet, the solution covers more than just Utilities. As good customer service is a valuable tool to lower customer attrition rates, Cloud for Service is a tool to help companies with this. Especially customers using SAP ECC as their ERP system will benefit from the capabilities of this tool with the available integrated scenarios. 

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

SAP HANA Cloud Platform / Cloud for Customer Powerweek

A couple of months ago we received an invitation from SAP regarding an upcoming Powerweek for HCP development in combination with Cloud for Customer. To participate in this powerweek, all we had to do is submit an interesting use case that uses both technologies / platforms. All submitted use cases would then be reviewed by the organizing team at SAP for submission.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Deleting Contact Person between SAP CRM and SAP ECC

In this week blog I'll explain what happens in SAP CRM as the SAP ECC system is leading to delete a contact person from an account. Deleting the contact person in ECC ensures that not the contact person but the relationship in CRM (is contact person of) between the contact person and the account is deleted. Deleting the contact person in SAP CRM is more difficult because this business partner can also be used in several business transactions.

In order to indicate that the specific business partner in SAP CRM is no longer active, it would make sense to set an archiving flag. The contact remains visible, however, if you select this contact you will receive a warning that the contact person is marked for archiving.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

C4C: Extending Pre-Packaged integration content with Standard field: A Simple Workaround

We could use Key User Tool ( KUT) or  SDK (PDI) to create Extension fields and add them to the existing Web service and eventually use them for integrations inbound and outbound.

What if we want to add a standard field, which is available on a screen/BO and not available in the standard Webservice?

I came across a scenario, where we wanted to have Standard field “Territory” visible on the Customer Header pane to be available in ECC in order to determine the Sales Office of the Customer. However, this field “Territory” was not available in the outbound Webservice used to replicate customers to SAP Business Suite “Replicate Business Partners to SAP ERP”.

In Order to realize this field in Outbound Web Services, we created an Extension Field “ExtTerritory”and passed the value of Standard Field “Territory” to it based on an Event in the SDK. Subsequently, adjusted the updated WSDL in ESB and mapped the value of new field “ExtTerritory” to a custom field in IDOC DEBMAS06.

This document details the simple work around we have done to accomplish this requirement using SDK.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Hot stuff : SAP Customer Connect CRM improvements delivered August 2015

SAP delivers features for their customers (for free…) through its Customer Connect Program. For those who are not familiar with this program, my colleague Pieter has written the most important stuff here and here . Although it is already October, this blog is about my personal top 5 of improvements delivered in august 2015.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

SAP Digital for Customer Engagement compared with SAP Cloud for Customer

We have ended our previous blog about SAP Digital for Customer Engagement (SAP D4C) with the conclusion that this solution offers, from a functional point of view, a complete CRM solution with a user experience that is very comparable to SAP Cloud for Customer (SAP C4C).

Obviously, there are consciously chosen limitations compared to SAP Cloud for Customer. This blog will describe these differences in more detail. In addition, we will discuss how SAP D4C could be the first step on the road to a full SAP C4C implementation.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

SAP Cloud for Customer; system landscape challenges

In the old days it was pretty simple and straightforward, you would have a 4 (or sometimes 3) system SAP landscape consisting of a development, test, acceptance and production system. With the introduction of cloud based solutions like C4C it’s not that obvious any more, in this blog we will give our point of view on how many C4C systems you should have and describe the approach on how to keep your cloud landscape in sync.  

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Integrating multiple ECC systems into one SAP Cloud for Customer system

Integrating SAP Cloud for Customer with an SAP ECC system is one thing… But integrating with two is literally another thing.

It might sound a bit strange, but already we have had this question quite a couple of times. In quite some occasions, acquisitions or multiple local implementations have resulted in single customers having multiple SAP implementations. This is not necessarily a problem in the back end, but when aiming at a single 360 degrees customer overview, you require a single truth both in reporting as well as in your customer-facing applications. Integrating with multiple backends from that standpoint is not exceptional, so let me share some of my findings on integrating multiple backends with a single C4C instance with you.

As there is detailed information on the SAP ECC integration available on the SAP Help portal, let me focus on the C4C side here.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Surveys with Product lists determined based on Target groups

Cloud for Customer is jam-packed with cool features to cover all kinds of business requirements.
In some cases these features are nicely described and explained in the help documentation, but in other cases you would be surprised what more the system has to offer that has not been extensively described. In this blog I want to share some information about how to set up product surveys with product determination based on product lists in combination with target groups. Yes I know, it is quite a mouthful but this functionality can be very useful if you want to limit the amount of data maintenance while still being able to automatically populate the relevant Products on Surveys.

This can be a lifesaver in retail execution scenarios, in which we conduct many store visits with product surveys. First of all you can already save tons of time by assigning product lists to surveys instead of individual products. Then on top of that you can achieve even more efficiency by assigning target groups to these product lists instead of individual customers. The stores that carry the same assortments can be grouped into the same target groups. So when visiting these stores the list of products automatically get populated on the survey. Let me continue to explain why this approach is way more maintenance-friendly.

This approach will especially become valuable when you have the total product assortment divided into many product lists that have been assigned to many customers at once. Instead of going into each individual product list to update the list of customers, we assign the target groups to the product lists one-time only. Whenever a new customer should be added or removed to multiple product lists at once we only update that single target group. This will directly affect the product list determination for this customer when for example conducting a survey with almost zero maintenance effort!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Call Center and Customer Service for Utilities in SAP Cloud for Customer

SAP is providing more and more Industry Scenarios to their Cloud for Customer (C4C) solution. In the past colleague Guus explained more about the Retail Execution for Consumer Products Industry. Now it is time to have a closer look at one of the other (new) industry solutions; Utilities. SAP C4C now integrates with SAP IS-U!

In the past 2 releases (1505 and 1508) SAP added a lot of new functionality to the utilities solution of C4C. This blog will focus on the Utilities Call Center and Customer Service capabilities in C4C. It shows which scenarios are covered and we will take a look at the administrator tasks that must be performed.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

How to deal with quarterly updates

As you probably know, SAP updates their Cloud 4 Customer software 4 times a year, every February, May, August and November. This is a great thing as you get new and improved functionality without having to pay extra for it. On the other hand, this does mean additional resources and attention is required to guarantee a smooth and consistent system.

This article will guide you through a number of tips and things to think of when the next quarterly update is coming.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Think Design

When I first heard of the Design Thinking process I thought it was all about building fancy looking user interfaces and modern looking mobile apps. But I soon learned that it is a user-centered design process. The Design Thinking process at SAP started in 2004 when Hasso Plattner thought that Design Thinking was needed in software development and business. He agreed to fund the first D-School at Stanford University. Four years later he brought 35 Design Thinkers into SAP to collaborate with the corporate strategy group and make Design Thinking a strategic priority at SAP. After 4 years of internal use of the Design Thinking process SAP scaled Design Thinking as a way to help customers drive business outcomes by reframing their problems. 

In 2012 I had my first hands-on experience with the Design Thinking process with SAP. In this blog I would like to share the steps of the Design Thinking process. For this blog I used the theory described in the bootcamp bootleg document of the Stanford Institute of Design.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Realtime processing of Webforms using ERMS

The use of Web forms with SAP ERMS is a powerful combination.
By providing the content of a web form to an incoming mail it is possible to add this data to the ERMS Fact base.
These additional fields can then be used in the ERMS rule modeler and can help you to further improve your automated email responses.
Standard SAP provides a so-called fact gathering service that will take care of this process. In this blog we will describe the use of the standard SAP fact gathering service for processing web form content in ERMS. This service expects the web form content to be delivered as an XML-file attached to an incoming mail.
As not all platforms are able to add an XML file as an attachment (as well as the fact that adding XML as attachments to emails might give you trouble with exchange server policies and virus checkers), this blog will also describe an alternative way to achieve the same goal using a custom built fact gathering service that will extract the web form fields directly from the HTML content of the email body using some custom field tagging.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

How to report on SAP C4C Survey Result

This blog will explain how you can create your own reports in SAP C4C based on given survey answers. Using this report you can analyze all given answers.

SAP C4C support the use of surveys. This blog will not explain all the different types of surveys and how to build a survey, but only focus how to build a report on the survey results.

Surveys can be used to register answers on predefined questions and can be used in leads, opportunities and visits. In this example we will focus on the survey results for visits.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

How to use KPI's in SAP Cloud for Customer

Business background

Sometimes when I ask a sales manager how he or she manages their salesreps, the response is often that the team is managed on sales turnover. Usually I reply with “OK! How do you do that?”… Do you have a magic button you push to increase sales volumes or something?”

Sales is a numbers game. Every sales organization keeps track of certain sets of numbers. It is easy to obsess over the obvious numbers like monthly or quarterly revenue or closing rates. Unfortunately, those numbers simply give you the “final score,” without giving you any insight on how your team plays their game.

Sales management simply wants to manage those activities that impact the increase of turnover and the performance of his team. For example they want to have better insight in the visit frequency of customers and how they vary in the sales team.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

SAP Digital for Customer Engagement

SAP launched an interesting new CRM cloud solution named SAP Digital for Customer Engagement (SAP D4C). In essence SAP D4C is the stand-alone entry-level version of the known SAP Cloud for Customer. Like SAP C4C it offers support for sales, service and marketing processes. SAP D4C focuses on smaller teams and departments who want to make a quick start in the field of customer engagement without any form of integration.

Starting with SAP D4C is simple; all it takes is a credit card and a connection to the Internet. The necessary licenses can be purchased through the SAP store ( The licenses cost €23, - per user per month, no minimum number of users required. There is also an option to choose for a free trial, with this trial version it is possible to try SAP D4C for free for 30 days.

It goes without saying that Acorel already tried SAP D4C and we would like to share our findings.

The conformation email is received short after registering at the SAP store. This email contains credentials and the hyperlink to access SAP D4C. An introduction video will be started after first login followed by a guided help covering the most relevant features of SAP D4C.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


Dear Reader,

On July 28th 2010, we started this blog with an article on enhancing a component and a view in the CRM Webclient.

The idea was to have a centralized place to share knowledge on topics related to our professional expertise, SAP CRM. The most important goal was to have good quality content on a steady basis. Every Wednesday at 12:00 CET.

We started off slow. With merely 23 pageviews in August 2010, I am very proud to serve more than 20.000 pageviews per month and over 400 email subscribers to our newsletter today, adding value to SAP projects around the globe.

Over the years, topics have varied, SAP CRM, BCM, Interaction Center, Webclient programming, SOAP interfaces, workflow, C4C, Hybris, etc, with a changing technology pushing towards SAP HANA and Cloud.

As Acorel grew, so did the number of contributors. It is these contributors that I would like to thank today. I am very proud to note that since the start, we have not missed a single Wednesday, all thanks to these devoted writers.

We plan to continue posting weekly and I hope you will be enjoying it as much as I do.

Pieter Rijlaarsdam

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Exception handling in SAP Workflow

Last week I showed how to instantiate an object in SAP Workflow.

What if the instantiation of the object fails? In our case, the user might not exist in the system anymore... So I would feed the object username, and the system would respond with 'Computer says no'?

If you would do nothing, the workflow would break.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Instantiating an object in SAP Workflow

The other day I was struggling with determining emailaddresses in SAP Workflow.

In my case, I was looking for the email address of a user assigned to a businesspartner, assigned to the lead I was working on.

In BUS2000108, there is an attribute 'EMPLOYEERESPONSIBLEUSER'.

The attribute is of type USR01, which is nice, but does not contain the attribute 'Emailaddress'...

Whilst looking around, I noticed another business object, named 'BUS4101', that could also eat usernames. The BUS4101 apparently does contain my emailaddress.

Great news... But how to get from a username to the attached emailaddres when the definition of the attribute is of the wrong type?

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

How to customise a standard report in C4C

One of the most impressive functionalities of Cloud for Customer (C4C) is the reporting and analysis functionality. 'Out of the box' there are many reports and KPIs in C4C that are standard available. These standard reports can be adjusted  and new reports can be built by C4C users if they are authorised for the work center 'Business Analytics'. In this blog I will explain how to adjust a standard report. Also I will illustrate how to easily export a custom built report from the test tenant to the production tenant.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

SAP HCP and the Internet of Things

With so many connected devices it makes sense that SAP is providing a solution to get insightful information from and to these devices so businesses can analyse the data and gain information to add value to the company.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Building fast and flexible reports using Cloud Data Sources

Because your customers are one of your biggest assets you want know everything there is to know about them. We have learned from experience that not all customer data is always present in one system which makes it challenging to give you a total overview. SAP Cloud for Customer (C4C) gives you easy to use functionality to add this missing data in your SAP C4C reports, giving your business the so much needed 360° overview. It can also be used to enrich other types of reports, you are not limited to your customers.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

SAP CRM Market Development Funds (MDF) with SD integration

In a previous blog I wrote about the SAP CRM Market Development Funds (MDF) functionality and how the MDF solution actually looks in the system. The MDF solution enables the brand owner to better manage the administration, distribution and consumption of funds for resellers. In the standard MDF solution the settlement (billing) document is generated in CRM with CRM billing (CRM-BE) and transferred from there to Accounting FI-AP.

In this blog I will explain the settings to be made to transfer the CRM settlement document not to Accounting but instead to an SD billing document in SAP ERP (SD-BIL). From there they can be further processed to Financial Accounting.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

2 Common issues in the account merge in SAP CRM on-premise

The account merge, or data cleansing, in SAP CRM allows you to compare and merge duplicate business partner records in data cleansing cases. When the data cleansing process has been completed, you can remove the redundant data records from the system using archiving.

When you have setup the account merge in SAP CRM you have 2 options for identifying duplicate records and creating a cleansing case.

  • From the search result list for accounts/employees. When you select two (or more) accounts/employees that you want to merge, the account merge button becomes active and you can create a cleansing case.

  • If the duplicate check is activated for accounts a dialog box appears when you create or edit an
    account and a potentially duplicate account is identified. The similarity of the duplicate is shown in percent.
In this Blog we will not describe the complete setup of the account merge functionality but we will focus on 2 common issues.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Analysis Add-in for Office

There are very powerful analysis tools which are easy to use within the familiar environment of Microsoft Office. It makes you capable to dig deep into your multidimensional business data to discover and identify hidden trends. SAP Business Objects Analysis for Office is such a powerful tool which is one of the elements of the SAP BI Front-end Spectrum. In this blog I will describe the advantages you have with this tool and highlight some nice features it has to simplify your implementation of an analysis workbook.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

SAP Cloud for Customer; Fiori user interface, new IPad app and much more!

There’s a lot going on related to SAP Cloud for Customer, good timing for a blog on the latest developments. This weekend the latest release was deployed in which a totally new platform independent user interface got delivered, we will take a look at it and answer the question 'Should we switch to it?' Also a lot of new functionality in the 1505 release and SAP Cloud for Customer got a little baby brother; SAP Digital for Customer Engagement.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

How to create a Guided Activity in the CRM WebClient

One user interface element that the CRM 7.0 system offers and which is perhaps not so well known is the Guided Activity. It's also known as Task-Based User Interface or Road Map. In this blog I would like to show how to create and use such a Guided Activity so you might see the potential for your own environment.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Starting with SAP HCP Gamification Service

SAP has announced the SAP HCP Gamification Service and it is publicly available from may 2015 in beta. In this blog I will have a sneak preview at this new service. My interest was caught because last year at our own Acorel Innojam we developed an extension for SAP Cloud 4 Customer with an external gamification platform. With the new SAP Gamification platform we can do the same thing powered by SAP!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Nice little thingies in Cloud for Customer

This week’s blog is about some simple things that make life easier for a C4C-user. A lot of good stuff has already been written about the configuration of C4C, but this time I am focusing on some usability points. Functionality that we take for granted while browsing, e-mailing, Googling and sharing, but not necessarily existed in earlier versions of SAP-solutions.  You may already know all of them, which is a good thing; this shows you are using C4C to its fullest potential. However, use the ones suited to your needs.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Modify a workflow task returned by gateway service WFSERVICE

With SAP Netweaver Gateway, SAP delivers a great standard service for getting and processing SAP workflow tasks (/IWWRK/WFSERVICE). 

In a recent situation I found out that the default behaviour of the service returns the description (body/message of the workflow task) ignoring new lines. It just concatenates the text in one long string. 

Showing this on the client (a native iOS app in my case) does not look good. Luckily SAP provides some BADI's that can be implemented to alter the default behaviour.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The sales professional in 2015: proactive, advising and especially perfectly informed

Your customer knows all the specifics of your product, is well known with the common prices in the marketplace, has googled your companies’ and most-likely your name as well. Equipped with all the information he can find, your customer goes to battle.

To be honest, drinking a cup of coffee over a general sales conversation simply does not do it anymore. It stands clear that the sales environment is undergoing a large transformation.

Customers have unrestricted access to information on the internet, and are usually active on social media. Because of this, they are well informed, and know exactly what they do and don’t want. This has great impact on you as a sales professional. In a B2B environment for instance, customers have checked all product specifications and prices even before contacting you. The only reason they need you as a salesperson, is for a good offer.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

SAP Cloud for Customer Reporting & Analytics

One of the most impressive aspects of SAP's Cloud for Customer (C4C) solution is its reporting and analytics capability. There are a lot of standard reports and KPI's which can be used "out of the box". These standard reports can be enhanced or new reports can be defined by the C4C users if they have access to the Business Analytics workcenter. But as we know, there are always more complex reports to be made to satisfy the need of the customer. This blog explains the different possibilities to extend the Reporting and Analysis for C4C.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

SAP CRM Action Scheduling: Sequential Action Processing

In most SAP CRM implementations, Action BAdI's are used to trigger automatic processing of business logic. This can vary from a follow-up document or trigger output, to complete custom logic to check certain business rules. There are many articles written on the creation of your own actions and how to schedule these. There is however a problem I kept running into. If you use your action to set a status on the CRM document in the background, the system does not determine the new actions that should be scheduled for this new status.


Determining which action should be scheduled is done by FM CRM_ACTION_DETERMINE. Triggering this function module in your own action will most likely lead to the loss of context though. Let me explain this with an example. Lets say we have three actions, each scheduled to be triggered on their own document status.
The outcome of the business logic in action 1 can lead to system status 2 or 3. The problem is that the system is unable to perform the redetermination of the 'to-be' situation. This is because the redetermination will find that action 1 is no longer valid, and so it will remove this action. But this is the action that is processed, so loss of context and system will dump. SAP has figured this out, so redetermination of actions while executing another is not done.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

SAP Hybris integration

Release 5.5 of the SAP Hybris Commerce Suite has just been introduced. With each release SAP Hybris makes big steps forward in the integration with SAP. For now, most details are provided for the integration with SAP ERP, along with some interesting developments around SAP Hybris Marketing, containing tools as the SAP Customer Engagement Intelligence (CEI).

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

HOWTO: Add attachments to workflow tasks

When working with SAP workflow, you might want to add attachments to workflow tasks or emails. In my specific requirement, I wanted to attach a quotation document generated by SAP CRM to the workflow task to approve this quotation.

Imagine you have sales reps offering sharp deals to your customers. As you don't want the deals to be too sharp, you set a number of parameters in which case you want the quotation to be approved.
When deciding on the approval, the salesmanager should be able to look into the deal at hand.

This article focuses on the step that the salesrep has submitted the quotation for approval. If you want more information on approval rules, output generation etc, feel free to contact me and I might be able to give some hints.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

SAP Cloud for Customer (REX) - Routes

In this blog I will tell something about the functionality Routes in Cloud for Customer Retail a previous blog my colleague Marius van Ravenstein highlighted this new functionality in the February 2015 release of SAP Cloud for Customer:
Execution and share my experience with this new functionality. I call this new functionality because the existing functionality Tour became obsolete with the 1502 release. In

With the 1502 release there’s new functionality for route planning making the Tour functionality in the Visit workcenter obsolete. With the route planning you’re able to create route templates which you can copy and automatically generate visits from, before this was basically a manual activity. This is a very useful addition because many companies who are using retail execution are used to execute the same visit planning, for example, every month so with this functionality they can create a master template  and copy it to create the same visit planning for the next few months.  

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Authorisations in Cloud for Customer

When implementing business systems, authorizations should be considered an important topic. You don't want to enable everyone to adjust your sales pipeline, change customer data or approve quotations.

In previous blogs my colleagues have already written a few things on dynamic page lay-outs and code-list restrictions, which can all be part of your authorization configuration. I thought it could be helpful to give you a complete overview of the authorization possibilities in SAP Cloud for Customer.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The impact of SAP Cloud 4 Customer on your company

SAP Cloud 4 Customer is a great product to mobilise and improve your salesforce while accelerating customer engagement. The implementation of Cloud 4 Customer can be as easy as a walk in a park. 
Like any software-as-a-service, all you need to do is request a system, get access, set up the system based on best practises and you'll be up and running in 4 to 6 weeks.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

SAP Cloud for Customer: February 2015 release update

SAP Cloud for Customer moves fast, each quarter a new release is made available with new functionality and updates to existing functionality. Two weeks ago all test tenants were upgraded to the newest release (1502) and last weekend all production tenants were upgraded. So excellent timing to take a more detailed look into some of the new features of SAP Cloud for Customer. 

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Closing the gap between Sales and Marketing

Your Customers are no longer interested in endless sales pitches. They tend to investigate thoroughly online, before placing their order. This calls for a shift in the collaboration between sales and marketing. The two departments will have a greater overlap than ever before.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Two very useful XML namespaces in SAPUI5 XML views

If you are familiar with developing SAPUI5 / Fiori applications, you are probably also familiar with XML Views and the namespaces that are involved. Most of the namespaces refer to the different libraries that SAPUI5 has. When you want to want to use components form a specific library, you have to refer to that library using a namespace. In this weeks blog I will describe two other namespaces that can be useful while developing SAPUI5 applications. Both namespaces can be found in the SAPUI5 documentation, but are easily missed as well.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

How (not) to use optimization rules in actions

Actions in SAP CRM are used to trigger processes based on events.

For example, when a lead is created in the system, you can implement an action on the event 'Lead created' to send an email to the person responsible for the customer the lead was created for.

Once the event is raised, the implemented schedule conditions will be evaluated. The system will check if the subject (in this case the lead) complies to the set of conditions. If this is the case, the action will be planned. If not, obviously nothing happens.

After scheduling the action (depending on the action setting 'process time'), the start conditions will be evaluated. This set of conditions determines if the action is allowed to be executed now, or if the system should wait for a different state (i.e. the object changing to another status, or, more likely, a certain moment in time).

Previous articles on actions can be found here.

Let's take a look at a more complicated requirement. Let's say we would like the following action to take place.

Send an email to the responsible employee 10 days before a lead's end date, but only if the lead has status open and is qualified as 'checked'.

This would require us to do the following:
- Create the [enddate - 10] date in the date profile.
- Create the action to send the email
- Create a schedule condition to determine whether the lead meets the requirements for sending the email at all (for instance qualification = 'checked' and status = 'open').
- Create a start condition to determine whether the action should be sent yet.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

How to debug the IPC

Pricing might seem simple from an end-user's perspective, but in practice can be quite complex as the price determination may depend on many factors (customer class, location, contracts, VAT, delivery type, payment method, sales organisation, material, etc).

To support all this complexity, SAP CRM uses condition techniques similar to SAP ECC, but leaves the actual calculation to a - for most people - black box... The Internet Pricing and Configurator (IPC). After reading this blog you no longer belong to 'most people'.
We will be showing how to take a peek inside the IPC.

As the IPC is a JAVA based component, you cannot debug the processes inside the IPC with a normal SAP ABAP debugger.

To debug the IPC, a couple of prerequisites are required as described in the pricing userexit manual in note 809820.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Getting AET fields to BW

In SAP CRM, with the application enhancement tool (AET) it is really easy to add custom fields.
For example, I added a few fields to the CRM Activity.

Check here and here and here and here for more information on how to use the AET.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Are you ready for Customer Engagement?

Nowadays the customer journey is becoming more complex. Customers are getting more control over information and contact channels and therefore the power of customer interaction is shifting from the seller to the buyer.

Over the past few years a lot of focus has been brought on customer experience. In each interaction the customer experience should be optimal and in line with the values and beliefs of the selling organization. Currently we see that the number of possible interactions is increasing. This is also referred to as the customer journey.

An example of a customer journey could be a customer looking at an online advertisement, browsing comparison websites, asking advice from friends, looking at tv commercials, browsing comparison websites again, visiting shops, buying online, complaining via twitter, calling customer service etc. All of which have to satisfy the customer's expectations. Integration of all of these different contact points is an important factor. It can be disturbing if the call center agent in the example is not able to see the previous discussion on twitter for instance. Integration and sharing information is key.