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.

Fuzzy searching

For almost every object in C4C you can search for multiple characteristics of the object. Suppose you are searching for this lead:

In this case I searched for the leads’ description. However, it is possible to search for the same lead by typing in the ID, the owner of the lead or even the contact person attached to the lead. There is no need to type in the full string, parts of the identifier suffice. The fuzzy search works even for a combination of two characters.

Posting / following/ flagging/ favourites

Every object in C4C has these four symbols in the bottom left corner of the screen. By using them you can mark an object:

  • Post Update – enables you to directly send an update message to everyone who is following this object. This will then show up in their feed;
  • Follow – mark this object to follow an item in your feed;
  • Flag – objects flagged will be put on your shelf as items to follow up;
  • Add to favourites – objects marked as a favourite will be put on your shelf as often used items.


Feeds are timelines with comments based on the objects that you marked as interesting but are also available per object to keep track of a specific item, e.g. a contact:

Comments on your posted updates will show up as a notification in your notification screen.


On the right hand side of the screen the shelf is located:

It gives an overview of all items flagged or marked as favourites. From here you can navigate directly to them, so the shelf is an easy bucket to store your frequently used objects. It looks a lot like the functionality used in Microsoft Outlook to keep track of important items.  Speaking of which…….

Add-in for Microsoft Outlook ®

In the ‘Download’- section in the top menu you can download the MS outlook add-in. The installation of this add-in is time well spent. Save it, run it, install it and you are good to go. The add-in can make the link between your contacts in Outlook and the accounts, contacts and appointments in C4C:

If a contact exists in C4C you can save it as an SAP-outlook contact. It is then stored in a separate folder of your contacts in outlook:

This ensures that your other work or private contacts do not get mixed up and synchronized to C4C unwantedly. If you are using Outlook as your main application to work from as a sales person, this will certainly help you in accepting C4C as a full CRM-application.

Some strange things I noticed

Hidden change history

A strange thing… Historical contents show up in the feed if you search for it. Eg. Suppose you changed a contacts’ name from Bruce Banner to Bruce Willis. If you then search for ‘Banner’, Bruce Willis will be shown and in his feed you will find that you renamed him. Shall we mark this a bug or an undocumented feature?


Sometimes quickly logging in and out of C4C brings you to the following logon screen. Although we all know that C4C runs on a Netweaver stack, this screen quietly reveals the roots of SAP C4C.


Searching for change history does not really show great confidence in the HANA based solution C4C. Or has SAP decided to leave some (less-relevant) data in disk storage?