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.

As it can, indeed, be this easy, I often run into situations with companies where decision makers don't see the complete picture when thinking about Cloud solutions. The golden rule in this is that the bigger and more complex the organisation is, the bigger the impact of SAP C4C, or any cloud solution, will be on your company's IT.

I would like to share a number of tips with you for consideration when starting up an SAP Cloud 4 Customer project. 

Infrastructure

Your future SAP Cloud 4 Customer is a solution which is easily accessible via the internet. More than often there will be a requirement to have SAP Cloud 4 Customer interact with an SAP backend system, being for example SAP CRM or SAP ERP. This means that a number of modifications are required in your company's IT infrastructure. With this, you should think of things like firewall adjustments and setting up a reverse proxy and DMZ.
Also, assuming you have an OTAP landscape for your SAP on premise solutions, you need to consider to which system you will connect your test tenant, in which developments will also take place.

Devices


SAP Cloud 4 Customer can be used on a tablet with a free app. The app is a great addition and really helps your sales people to work more efficient. A few things you should consider here is for example the use of Adobe forms. Should your company's sales department work with ipads and depend on the use of Adobe forms in the sales process, you'll have a challenge here. Also, the use of attachments is a point of interest, as certain types of tablets won't let you access the tablet's file directory in attempting to add an attachment to a transaction in the Cloud solution.

Maintenance



With SAP C4C you won't have to worry about server or memory capacity and downtime which is great and will save you money. There are few things that you need to be aware of in terms of maintenance. Such as the quaterly system updates, which requires you to test your solution every 3 months. Also, there is a different approach, from what you might be used to with SAP on premise solutions, in transporting changes to your production environment.

People

Even though, as mentioned before, you'll have reduced costs in maintenance you'll still need to be able to support the people who are going to work with SAP Cloud 4 Customer whenever they have questions.

Summary
I have only mentioned a few things to think of when you're going to start an SAP Cloud 4 Customer project. As you can see there are plenty of things to consider to make the project a great success. We are happy to help you further in this so feel free to contact us or leave a post for further interaction and / or questions.

3 comments:

  1. I believe this post just forgot to mention one very important thing, Customer Enhancements.
    As far as I know, customer enhancements are possible only for Webui interface, this mean, it is possible only to add or hide standard fields. Other types of customer enhancements, such as, adding new process, new fields and son on, those are not possible.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Laercio, thanks for your post! Your comment is true but only to a certain level. Customer enhancements are actually possible in the SAP Cloud 4 Customer solution but the variety of possible enhancements are not as rich as in SAP CRM on premise. New fields can be added, either via de Key User Tool or the Software Development Kit but implementing complete new processes or applying deep logica is indeed not an option.

      Delete
    2. Hi Laercio,

      We would like to point you to the blog at http://scn.sap.com/community/cloud-for-customer/blog/2015/03/17/extensibility-in-cloud-for-customer to provide you the relevant information to further your understanding about the capabilities around Customer Enhancements available with the SAP Cloud for Customer SaaS offering.

      Please join us on the SCN community dedicated to SAP Cloud for Customer at http://scn.sap.com/community/cloud-for-customer by joining and “Following” the community to stay abreast of the latest information regarding this public cloud SaaS offering that helps SAP customers Run Simple and Engage Customers Like Never Before.

      Thank you.
      Vikram

      Delete