Events recap and six month update from the SAP EcoSystem

Where we've been, what we've been doing, to help customers

Six months ago, following a week spent at SAP’s FKOM event, I wrote a blog highlighting the top 3 strategic goals for the OpenText and SAP relationship. You can find that blog here. We’ve also attended a number of events.

BA Plane

Six months later let’s review where we are in relation to those Key Initiatives in a series of Blogs over the next few weeks.

We’ve had a very busy last three months attending five key events on three continents. Attending all five events meant covering 28,000 miles (or over once round the earth) and spending over two days in the air.

Sapphire is the largest event of the year that we attend (excluding Enterprise World). This year over 16,000 attendees descended, from all around the world, on Orlando for the four day event that is Sapphire. As I detailed in the Sapphire preview blog here, this was our 10th year as an SAP Solution Extension Partner and this was our biggest and best Sapphire yet – hosting numerous round tables with customers (long term and brand new customers), executive meetings, breakouts and thousands of customer interactions – our team did a great job.

To cap it all we were recognised by SAP for not one, but two, Pinnacle Awards – best Solution Extension Partner and Best DDM Partner – making it 10 years in a row we have been recognised. Thankfully we get about six months off now before we start planning for Sapphire 2018 to go bigger and better again. OpenText CMO Adam Howatson did a great write up of the event and what the SAP relationship means to OpenText.

Sapphire Team

Saphila took place a couple of weeks after Sapphire. Saphila is the African version of Sapphire and this year it took place in Sun City, about two hours outside Johannesburg.

It was my first time attending and I found it to be an excellent event, with good customer and thought leadership sessions, including a great keynote from Tom Raftery and some standout partner and SAP sessions covering everything from Hybris and Retail to SuccessFactors and HR processing.

The African community of SAP, Partners and customers seem to have a very strong relationship with each other, the general atmosphere was one of positivity, pride in the African country and continent and looking to the future. Luckily Saphila is every two years, as I think it will take that long to recover from the after-parties!

Sun City

Finally SuccessConnect, which was especially important for OpenText as we officially announced that the Extended ECM For SAP SuccessFactors solution was available, as a cloud solution on a subscription pricing model.

As well as OpenText announcing the product, SAP also announced the launch of the solution live on stage and this helped generate a lot of interest at the OpenText stand.

At the end of the event, our SC’s had delivered almost hundred demonstrations. We had a great joint customer breakout session with Andy Strong from BAT. The room was jam-packed with over a hundred attendees watching Andy explain the benefits the OpenText solution delivered as part of his organisations HR transformation. My colleague Rana wrote a blog about BAT and there is also a success story on the OpenText web site.

At the end of June, the entire OpenText and SAP product and partnership team gathered in a very sunny Walldorf in Germany at SAP’s HQ for our annual six month review of the partnership and its goals. The joint engineering leads met to discuss the next wave of innovations that we are going to bring to our customers, be it more Cloud Subscription solutions, support for more areas of the SAP platform (for example last quarter as part of EP2 we announced support for SAP Hybris Cloud for Customer platform), technical and business challenges we need to address and the time scale to bring some new products to market. We celebrated this event with yet another new product launch – SAP S/4HANA Cloud for invoice processing and more details on that solution will follow.

OpenText and SAP Team

Finally July and Enterprise World in Toronto. The biggest event of the OpenText year, with over 5,000 attendees from customers, partners and employees.

There are a great number of blogs such as Emma’s roving report, and the daily recaps on this site detailing what happened at Enterprise World, including the launch of Magellan, Extended ECM in the Public Cloud and the Release 16 showcase.

What was of importance for the OpenText and SAP team was that SAP was awarded the OpenText partner of the year 2017 and equally as important many of our joint customers won awards for their implementation of our solutions – including the aforementioned BAT for Consumer Products Innovation, Salt River Project for Energy and Engineering Innovation and for EIM Innovation Black Sea Trade & Development. Congratulations to all Award winners and partners who worked on these deployments.

Award Winners

So, that’s a snapshot of events we’ve been attending over the last six months. Over the next two weeks I’ll post three more blogs covering the three key initiatives highlighted six months ago – journey to S/4HANA, Cloud and IoT. Until then, Happy Summer (or if you are south of the equator) Happy Winter.

Jonathan Beardsley

Jonathan is a Program Manager in Business Transformation and Digital Disruption, particularly interested in how customers are digitally transforming their supplier, customer and business relationships and where OpenText can help. Previously a CEM Architect for 15 years working across a variety of Digital Marketing requirements, helping customers deliver new and innovative online and digital channels.

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