Wednesday, March 9, 2016

SAP Cloud for Customer - Out of the Box integration

Integration of customer focussed systems such as SAP Cloud for Customer is no longer limited to only SAP ECC. Customers are asking for integration with social media and a variety of other tools and platforms, SAP C4C offers many of these integration capabilities, some of them out of the box. This blog provides an overview of the platforms and tools C4C integrates with and shows how easy it is to realize an integration using a mashup web service.

Overview integration options

From a technical perspective there are several options to realize integration with 3rd party tools and platforms. For example open APIs (Odata and SOAP Web Service APIs) and Mash ups for URLs , HTML and data integration. This blog focuses not so much on the technology behind the integration but provides an overview of the different tools and platforms C4C integrates with and concludes with setting up the integration between C4C and Evernote. An overview of the 3th party tools C4C can integrate with is shown in the figure below.



As you can expect from one of the leading Customer Engagement and Commerce tools, integration with SAP backend (on premise) systems SAP ECC and SAP CRM (via Hana Cloud Integration or SAP PI) is standard available as well as email integration with Outlook and Lotus Notes, integration with social media such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube (the last one is not shown in the picture but is available, see link). There is also standard integration with several SAP Cloud Products:

  • SAP JAM; SAP tool for information exchange and collaboration within organizations, similar to Yammer. Integration with SAP C4C is realized by making use of the Hana Cloud platform, see link
  • SAP Success Factors;  HRM cloud solution, integration with C4C delivers the ability to interface employees from Success Factors to C4C, see link (SAP S-user needed)
  • SAP Hybris Marketing and Commerce; integration scenarios of Hybris Commerce with C4C for leads and service tickets is available, see link. Hybris marketing integrates with C4C and supports a scenario integrating target groups in Hybris Marketing with Leads in SAP C4C, see link

Integration with 3th party tools and platforms 

Some of the available integrations with 3rd party tool / platform is highlighted below with referencec to additional information sources.

  • Inmind - Cloud CPQ Express. CPQ stands for Configure Quote Price. This is a solution, integrated with SAP ECC and SAP C4C, which delivers functionality to register complex sales quotes including product/ variant configuration in SAP C4C. See this link for an overview of the possibilities and this video (link) for an example in which a truck is configured and offered. See also this interesting blog on SDN.
  • FPX – Next generation CPQ. Alternative for Inmind CPQ is the solution of FPX, also directly integrated with SAP C4C as can be seen in this video where again a truck is configured and offered directly from the SAP C4C user interface.
  • Mindtouch – Geniuslink. The tooling of MindTouch offers employees training documentation, frequently asked questions and answers, work instructions and much more through a simple search directly from C4C. Integration is achieved with a HTML mash-up, this enables the Genius Link search feature from the Service Ticket in SAP C4C. See this link for the configuration steps (SAP JAM login required) and this link for general information.
  • RIVA – Email integration. The standard email integration between Outlook and SAP C4C has certain limitations, especially when your end users use a mobile device (phone or tablet) as their main device. RIVA email integration takes care of these limitation, see link link for details. On this site a comparison between the standard Outlook integration features and the additional features RIVA will provide can be found.
  • Abby – business card scanner. Are you tired of having to enter your business cards manually in SAP C4C? Then Abby integration is the solution for you, take a photo of the business card of your contact and the data is automatically transferred to C4C, see link.
  • Dun & Bradstreet. If you want customer information provided by Dun & Bradstreet to be displayed directly at the customer level in SAP C4C you might want to check out the mash-up integration described here.
  • SnapEngage. Chat integration makes it possible to interact with customers via chat, directly via the SAP C4C user interface. Integration with 3rd party tool Snapchat makes this possible, see this link for the configuration steps and this link (SAP JAM login required) for details.

The list of integration options is a bit too large to explain all of them in detail. But basically for all 3rd party integration solutions there is documentation available online. My advice is to walk through the different integration options displayed in the overview picture to check whether there might be an interesting tool for your organization listed. A bit of research online will give you a quick insight into the possibilities.

For some of the tools that can be integrated with C4C, and more will follow in the near future, the Hana Cloud Platform (HCP) is positioned as a linking pin in setting up the integration. For example, the SAP JAM integration with C4C is setup using HCP and also a Gamification Service is made available on HCP which can be integrated with C4C (see link). If you want to know more about HCP, Acorel colleague Pieter wrote a blog on it.



How – To: integration with Evernote


The second part of this blog shows how simple it can bet to set up an integration with SAP C4C, in this case integration with Evernote,  market leader in tooling for capturing notes, reminders and personal checklists.



Step 1 – Scoping

First step is to activate the Evernote integration capability in SAP C4C. Log in to the Silverlight UI and change the scope of the implementation project via Business Configuration> Implementation projects. At step 4 in the scope change wizard activate the Evernote integration:






Save your changes in step 6 of the wizard. Result of the scope change is availability of a mashup web service integration option. This is made available with an inactive status and can be accessed via Application and User management > Mashup web services:


Step 2 – Request API codes

To use the Evernote web service you need to register API codes in it. These need to be requested at Evernote via this link:


You will receive the API codes (Consumer Key en Consumer Secret) immediately after your request is submitted (via email).

Step 3 – Entering API codes in C4C

The received API codes need to be entered in the mashup web service in C4C via the button “Enter API codes”:


Click on Save. REMARK: the status of the API codes is now OK, however, do not activate the mashup web service itself with the button Activate because this seems to result in integration failure rather than a working integration. This seems to be a bug in the solution.


Step 4 – Request activation API key on Evernote production

The generated Evernote web service integrates with the Evernote production environment, the API keys however, are initially created on the Evernote test environment and not on the production environment. So to start using the integration, activation of the API keys on the Evernote production environment should be requested at Evernote via this link.


These request are processed by Evernote within 2 working days, you will receive confirmation of the activation on the Evernote production environment per email. Once this confirmation is received the Evernote integration is ready to be used. 

Step 5 – Add tab Evernote to Opportunity

Only thing left to do is to add the tab Evernote via screen configuration (Adapt > Master layout) to the Opportunity.


Once the tab is displayed move it to the appropriate position and end the layout changes (Adapt > End lay-out changes).

Step 6 – Display and Pin Evernote notes in C4C

During customer visits and/or meetings notes are being registered in Evernote, it depends on personal preferences how Evernote is exactly used but normally a Sales Representative will have different notebooks. In this example we are using 2 notebooks, Opportunities 2015 and Opportunities 2106.


These notebooks can now be accesses via the Opportunity in SAP C4C:


The search and sort function can be used to search and select Evernote notes directly from the Opportunity in SAP C4C:


The relevant notes can be “pinned” so that when the opportunity is displayed again, these notes are displayed automatically. 


Remarks on Evernote integration

Some points to consider when setting up the integration between Evernote and C4C:
  • Do not activate the mashup web service, this actually results in a not working integration (bug)
  • The tab Evernote in the Opportunity can be used in both desktop (HTML5 and/or Fiori) and on mobile devices (tested with native and extended App on iPad)
  • Notebooks in Evernote should be "shared", otherwise the notes from these notebooks are not visible within C4C (via the Notebook settings in Evernote)
  • I was not able to get the feature "Suggested" to work, normally there should be some note suggestions here based on a key word comparison between the text of the note and key data of the Opportunity like customer name and/or opportunity name.
  • Notes are not physically stored in C4C, it’s just a link to the note at the moment it is pinned.

Conclusion

Setting up the Evernote integration shows how easy it can be to realize integration between SAP C4C and a 3th party tool. It must be said that the Evernote integration is one of those integrations that’s really out-of-the-box, just some simple configuration and no need to configure or develop additional interfaces.

On the contrary, there are also a number of tools which do integrate with SAP C4C but just not as out-of-the-box as the Evernote example. When you think of it, it is only logical that tooling like Cloud CPQ Express and FPX CPQ do require company specific fine tuning and configuration of interfacing because these tools are integrated within the core processes of an organization. Integration options are certainly there, just have a look at the example video’s added in this blog, but most likely there will be a need for additional configuration and / or (interface) development either in SAP C4C, the interface layer or the 3th party tool you’re integrating with.

But despite the fact that setting up interfacing with some 3th party tools is not always plug and play, ultimately, the realization of interfacing with 3rd party tools will give your company the opportunity to integrate with the best-in-class tooling giving your company a competitive edge and your processes are fully covered from one single user interface: SAP C4C.

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