In the last (17.11) release SAP focussed more on platform and infrastructure improvements. This new 18.02 release contains more new features and improved functionality for the business user.
In today's blog we try to give you an overview of the highlights of the 18.02 release. The complete release briefing was over 360 slides so we can’t go into all the details.
Platform and Integration
The end-of-maintenance window for the Silverlight UI for both business users as admin users was extended until February 2018! SAP is now definitely saying goodbye to the Silverlight (SL) client. As of 18.02 you can no longer configure Silverlight as your default client and SAP will no longer provide any support on SL.
Update on GDPR – The capabilities that were already available for the Privacy topic to comply with the EU guidelines, have been further improved in the 18.02 release and also the 18.05 release will contain additional GDPR features. A customer webinar on the GDPR topic was held on December 5th.
Mobility & Offline – Here is another nice touch, the extended app (IOS and Android) now supports touch ID to enter the passcode. Also the performance of the IOS app has improved in offline mode. Be aware that the IOS app now only runs on IOS 10 or higher.
Groupware (Server based) – The server side integration add in is now also available for the Outlook Mobile App.
Data Workbench – The data workbench will become the primary data migration tool. Additional workbench objects are now available for business partner relations, partner contacts, competitors, service agents, tax numbers and sales arrangements. New OData based functionality for import and export of tickets.
What's new in Sales!
Lead and opportunity management - You can now visualize leads and opportunities in a map view. So you can search on leads and opportunities nearby or in a specific map area.
Machine Learning – Lead scoring which was first introduced in Beta in 17.1 will now become general available in 18.02. Account insights is offered in a Beta version and helps you target the B2B accounts with the highest propensity to buy. The data can be enriched with data from Bombora, a third party data provider. More machine learning features will be gradually introduced over time.
Sales contracts – which became general available in 17.11 is also enhanced with some additional functionality to determine sales area and eligible parties for call offs.
Sales quotes – The external pricing for quotes can now also be done via an asynchronous call to improve performance. The workflow functionality is improved to support a multi-level approval process. And a lot of other enhancements are done in this area.
Sales orders - Approval via Email Notification. A user can approve or reject the order from the email itself without logging into the system. And also here the offline pricing functionality is further enhanced. You can now link a sales order with leads, opportunities or campaigns and you can create a quote or another order as follow-up document of an order.
Offline pricing - which was released in 17.08 is now general available and has some new features like e.g. support of condition exclusion and improved tooling for the download of pricing procedures.
Activities - Appointments can be classified and visualized as out of office. Drag and drop functionality to add files as an attachment to an activity.
Visits - You can now maintain visit types for a visits. The visit type can be used in routing rules and workflows. You can select an alternative visit address of an account
What's new in Service!
CTI – Is enhanced with some new functionality like e.g. click to call. You can click on a phone number to launch the call via CTI. This click to call functionality is still in Beta since the functionality is not yet available on all the screens in release 18.02 .
Email channel – You can now use inline images in the reply (Fiori client). You can add images via drag and drop or paste from clipboard. The reply from Outlook option is now also available in Fiori.
Machine Learning: Also in the service area additional Machine Learning (ML) functionality is introduced to determine the ticket category based on the content of a ticket. The ML functionality can also be used for automated solution proposal.
Tickets - Bar code scanning for registered products is now available in tickets and can be used online and offline. Users can start and stop time recordings in a ticket in offline mode similar to online.
Resource scheduler: If your using the resource scheduler you will see that a number new features are added. You can collapse the demands list to have a better view on the Gantt chart. You can sort the employees by name or skills. Out of office appointments are visualised in the Gantt chart etc.
As you can see also this release is packed with new features and enhancements. Can't wait for what's next!
The Official Pre-Release Briefing can be found here: Release briefing 1802