Our vision as a Strategic Partner on SAP : RISE with SAP, BTP, S/4HANA, …
As the world’s leading ERP publisher, SAP represents no more and no less than 50% of the market share! And if 10 years ago, the solution only took the form of an offer centred on its famous ERP, we have to admit that things have largely evolved since then. To understand the situation, we meet Nicolas Codron, General Manager of BAW (Business At Work).
It was in 2010 that SAP acquired the database and mobile solutions provider Sybase for 5.8 billion dollars. Through this acquisition, the publisher got its hands on the HANA database, a cutting-edge, columnar solution that revolutionised the speed of data processing: a year that marked the beginning of SAP’s great transformation.
« HANA was seen as a major transformation factor, so much so that the publisher decided to completely rebuild its ERP around this database. A massive investment, which allows the real-time processing of very large volumes of data and opens the way to numerous applications for its customers. From this premise, SAP is developing a new ERP: S/4HANA, » explains Mr. Codron.
Six years ago, the publisher announced that its current ERP would soon be replaced by S/4HANA, and that the old ERP (SAP ECC) would no longer be maintained by the publisher from 2027 – an unprecedented change, given that more than 2,500 companies use the solution in France.
SAP, the great transformation
SAP is therefore now positioning itself as a true technological player, capable of understanding and supporting the entire digital transformation of a company. To support this major change, SAP is setting up the Business Technology Platform (BTP, formerly SCP/SAP Cloud Platfom): a technological foundation, available in Cloud mode, on which each company can now organise its entire digital transformation.
« In this sense, SAP offers its customers the possibility of relying on a Platform as-a-Service, capable of pre-assembling a whole range of components (business intelligence, Internet of Things, blockchain, machine learning and many other services), in addition to the backbone that the ERP constitutes for its customers’ IS. In addition, it offers access to a suite of analytical offerings, solutions dedicated to human resources (Success Factor) and purchasing (Ariba, Field Glass, Concur), etc. In short, a real revolution. And all of this, in an approach centred on the integration of Cloud Computing, which we at BAW see as a vector for accelerating transformation and modernisation. Our clients have understood this and, in order to keep up with the acceleration of the transformation cycle, they are immediately taking into account this technological lever that is cloud computing,» explains the BAW director.
From this new starting point, SAP is launching RISE with SAP at the beginning of 2021: an offer that provides customers with access to a technological context through a single contract that will enable them to transform their legacy ERP applications in order to facilitate the path towards the new S/4 ERP and new CLOUD-type architectures. In this area, SAP offers an approach that is unique on the market: each customer can choose the cloud infrastructure (IaaS, Infrastructure-as-a-service) of their choice from among the world’s major IaaS providers: AWS, Microsoft Azure or GoogleCloudPlatform, the famous “hyperscalers”. And SAP takes care of everything! In short, SAP’s aim is to provide a “ready-to-use” solution to accelerate the digital transformation of companies, which combines the new S/4 ERP in the cloud, coupled with access to technological components through its BTP cloud platform, which can be activated on demand and on a pay-per-use basis, through a single contract and the issue of a single invoice.
The SAP partner
And that’s where BAW (Business At Work) comes in. As an SAP partner since 2006, the company positions itself as a partner, helping its customers to take ownership of and get the most out of the entire RISE with SAP offering.
A support and transformation offering that enables the transformation of the company’s support functions to be understood: Financial Management, Human Resources, Supply Chain, IS Management, General Management… the whole spectrum is covered!
« Our DNA is the business, with significant investment in IS and technology as a vector for concrete, agile transformation that delivers results! Our business model is based on our ability to provide seamless, end-to-end support for our clients’ transformation projects. To achieve this, we mobilise three complementary businesses: consulting, integration and recurring services. The latter are based on our shared service centres, which mobilise all the expertise – from infrastructure to user support – required to handle all or part of the current life phases of our customers’ applications. And this is done for the benefit of business users… and to improve the «mastery of use». Each of our three business lines is permanently at the disposal of the other two, in unified systems that share the same culture, common approaches and tools, and the same sense of customer service. For us, technology must serve the users, hence our slogan: «Making IT work for People», Nicolas Codron explains.
The result? An approach that focuses on use cases and contexts. To do this, BAW relies in particular on a strong culture of innovation and technology watch. The aim? To master IT in order to get the best out of it, to serve the specific contexts of its clients! Always in this logic of use. Business At Work also relies on a sector-based approach in order to respond effectively to the specificities of the customer’s value chain: Engineering, High Tech and Infrastructure, Pharmaceuticals and Cosmetics, Banking, Insurance, Public Sector.
An approach that is both thoughtful and practical, which puts people at the heart of organisations, and which prompted BAW to acquire aXoma Consultants at the end of 2020: «Our aim was to strengthen our consulting capacity, particularly in the specialist areas of the supply chain. We need to have all the skills we need in a generalized context of digital transformation, which implies a very strong coupling between the business challenges and the possibilities offered by new technologies. Our merger with aXoma allows us to accelerate this movement, but it does not replace our major training and skills development effort. We must enable each of our team members, whatever their experience or age, to follow this wave of change, including through our company-wide innovation process. Each year, we invest 5,000 man-days with our teams on these issues of skills development and innovation. In this sense, we position ourselves as a company that is adapted to the aspirations of the new generations. In a context where France is experiencing an upheaval in the relationship to work, particularly among the younger generations, and a war for talent, the consequences of which have not yet been fully appreciated by all the economic players,» points out Nicolas Codron.
A positioning in tune with the expectations of companies and new talents, which is now pushing BAW to double the size of its workforce in the next 4 years… more in the next episode!
Carrier of innovation
This article is an extract from our interview given to Informations Entreprise magazine in March 2022.