SAP CRM redefined


SAP has announced plans to release a portfolio of SAP hybris tools designed to simplify the front office and go beyond basic customer relationship management (CRM) to deepen the relationships companies have with their customers.

The new solutions in combination seek to address the long-expressed market view that SAP CRM on its own was insufficient to manage the dynamic, multifaceted and context-aware relationships customers now demand.

“Companies can no longer rely on the costly, siloed systems of yesterday to engage with their customers, who are savvy, multidevice digital natives. They want their needs understood and met — right now and every time,” said Bill McDermott, CEO, SAP SE.

“Legacy cloud-based CRM technologies create business complexity because their foundations predate the rise of social media and mobility. Companies today need innovative, integrated solutions that simplify the front office, making them easy to do business with and fostering greater customer engagement.”

The timing of the announcement earlier this week, which is seen as a clear shot over the bows at Salesforce’s cloud-based CRM offering, was also far from random – coming as it did during Salesforce’s Dreamforce event in San Francisco.

Crucially, SAP will take its CRM capabilities into the cloud, with SAP hybris as a Service, running on the SAP HANA Cloud Platform.

SAP hybris Profile will serve as the foundation of the system, capturing all interactions, contexts and behaviours to create a real-time, evolving profile of the customer, enabling businesses to deliver new customer experience capabilities.

SAP hybris Customer Experience software will provide omnichannel delivery capability, offering a responsive content management system; managing and delivery of targeted content, offers, products and service interactions; a focus on cross-touchpoint real-time optimisation and context; and integration with other SAP hybris products for simplified deployment of integrated experiences.

An ecosystem of service providers will assist customers to adopt SAP hybris as a Service quickly and at a low cost.

“SAP hybris as a Service is intended to offer easily digestible packages for fast integration, and to help us take the companies we work with beyond CRM,” said Scott Mager, customer engagement and commerce practice leader, Deloitte Digital.

SAP said it is also collaborating with software partners including DocuSign, GENBAND, OpenText and Sprinklr, with the aim of integrating key technologies with its newest solutions in the areas of electronic signatures, real-time communications, and the management of digital assets and social campaigns.

On the announcement, Graham Jackson, senior vice president, SAP hybris Asia Pacific, Japan and China (pictured), said, “Traditional, legacy, cloud-based CRM solutions were not built for the era of customer engagement – they have been designed to manage the customer record and not the relationship. Today’s customers are in control – they are digitally connected, social networked, better informed, and they interact with you at every channel. The onus is now on the brand to provide a seamless, consistent omnichannel experience.

“SAP hybris Profile, SAP hybris Customer Experience, and SAP hybris-as-a-Service will bridge the gap that has emerged between companies and their customers by dramatically improving the customer experience, by making use of more timely and relevant information,” Jackson said.

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