SAP Customers Worldwide Exploit New Business Opportunities
With Web-Based Real-Time Business Solutions
KARLSRUHE, Germany - Dec. 8, 1998 - Today at SAP TechEd '98, SAP
AG (NYSE ADR: SAP) announced that customers worldwide are using SAP Internet solutions to
conduct real-time business operations over the Internet. The SAP presence in the Internet
continues to gain momentum as more and more SAP customers embrace such SAP Internet
solutions as SAP Online Store, SAP Employee Self Service and SAP Business-to-Business
Procurement (SAP BBP). These solutions enable customers to deploy comprehensive intranet,
extranet and e-commerce solutions that provide full-cycle, real-time integration between
Internet, front-office and back-office systems and feature intuitive user interfaces for
casual users. As a result, companies are able to exploit new business opportunities,
extend their reach to new user communities, and execute business processes at Internet
Check out the SAP
Internet Solutions Information Center.
"The Internet represents a significant new sales channel for us. Currently, 10
percent of our orders come in directly through the Internet, and we expect that rate to
increase substantially over the next few years," said Wolfgang Nobeling, e-commerce
business director for ELFA AB, a distributor of
electronic instruments and components based in Stockholm, Sweden. "Our SAP
infrastructure ensures that we have the scalability to manage the 40,000 items in our
catalog along with our anticipated growth. The Web will provide significant long-term
benefits to our business. Not only can we provide better customer service, but our sales
force is freed up to spend more time pursuing new customers."
Prisma Express GmbH, a wholesaler specializing in
consumer high-tech hardware and software with more than 4,500 dealers throughout Germany,
has deployed an SAP-based extranet that manages information flow and communication and is
tightly integrated with core business processes. "This integrated solution prepares
Prisma Express for the real-time requirements of the digital age," said Peter Rohwer,
president of CKS Europe, one of the consulting firms on the project and co-founder of
Prisma. "The tight integration of the extranet into SAP R/3 ensures consistency
between online and transactional data and keeps maintenance overhead to a minimum."
SAP Internet Solutions
For hundreds of SAP customers, the Internet is taking on increasing importance as a way to
improve employee communication, build better partner relationships, and market or buy
products and deliver services directly over the Web. On one hand, customers require a
robust infrastructure that is integrated with their business systems and that provides
security, scalability and reliability. On the other hand, they need the flexibility to
adapt quickly to changing markets and build solutions that allow rapid convergence of new
customers and new ideas. SAP customers are deploying such solutions today to create a
whole new way of doing business.
SAP delivers a multilevel approach to its Internet solutions to fully
meet these diverse requirements. First, SAP delivers to customers a complete, open
Internet infrastructure-leveraging the SAP Business Framework
technology and its open Business
Application Programming Interfaces (BAPIs) - that allows Internet solutions to access
SAP enterprise applications. Second, SAP delivers prepackaged Internet application
components that include intuitive Web interfaces designed for casual users,
Internet-specific business processes and easily customizable and extensible templates.
Finally, SAP combines the components to deliver complete Internet business solutions and
business scenarios. SAP offers customers the choice whether to implement comprehensive
Internet business solutions or to implement components individually on a gradual basis. In
addition, SAP offers Internet solutions within its vertical industry solutions, for
example, a KANBAN Internet application component for the automotive industry or a
consignment stock status information component for the retail industry.
"The Internet is changing the way smart companies conduct business, and we are
pleased to be playing a key role in making this possible," said Dr. Peter Zencke,
executive board member, SAP AG. "Since we have already built and delivered an open
and scalable Internet application infrastructure, we are now able to continually evolve
and innovate Internet solutions that better enable our customers to build virtual
communities across their value chains and within their organizations."
The critical role SAP plays in helping corporations leverage the Internet was
reinforced by Larry Kittelberger, vice president and chief information officer for AlliedSignal Inc.: "SAP R/3 is a key component
of AlliedSignal's overall Six Sigma quality program for driving world-class performance in
each of our businesses. It's also the application infrastructure on which AlliedSignal
will heavily expand its electronic commerce capabilities." With headquarters in New
Jersey, AlliedSignal is a $14.5 billion materials supplier for the aerospace and
Ease of Use Expands User Communities
Ease of use is one of the key advantages that the SAP Internet solutions bring to
companies. Because these applications are both highly functional and simple to operate,
companies are finding that large numbers of employees are embracing these applications on
their own initiative.
Thomas Bromma, project director for UBS AG, one of the
world's leading financial services groups, with headquarters in Switzerland, said,
"The SAP Internet solution for internal address management, Who-Is-Who, covers all
organizational information within the bank and is our most-used Web application, available
for all 45,000 employees, with 300,000 transaction calls per day. This application has
proven to be a major tool for supporting the merger processes of the two former banks SBC
and UBS into the new bank UBS AG."
Georgia-Pacific Corp., which is deploying SAP Employee
Self Service as the core of a new Employee Service Center, is experiencing similar
success, with nearly 7,000 employees choosing to use SAP Employee Self Service to view
electronic paystubs, update tax withholding and personal information, view the online
personnel directory, and enroll in benefits and flexible spending plans. Employees access
the system about 10,000 times each month, resulting in roughly 5,000 monthly transactions
that would otherwise be handled by human resources staff.
"Employees are eagerly embracing this new technology," said Carr Lucas,
director of employee management systems at Georgia-Pacific. "SAP Employee Self
Service supports our strategy to empower employees to handle routine business functions.
We're lowering our per capita administrative costs, improving the accuracy and timeliness
of our HR data, and freeing HR personnel for tasks of greater strategic value." The
company, a $13 billion producer and distributor of paper and pulp products, is rolling out
SAP Employee Self Service to employees as they gain access to the company's intranet.
Bertelsmann Media Systems, the world's
third-largest media company, also reports high levels of acceptance from user communities.
Klaus Reitmeier, project manager for Bertelsmann, said, "The SAP Internet solutions
enable us to further leverage our investment in the SAP system by extending the
functionality of the system to casual users. The numerous requests from various profit
centers within the Bertelsmann group for similar solutions show that SAP is heading in the
right direction by Internet-enabling its powerful system."
Easy Deployment Gives Customers Agility
Many customers have also benefited from the ease of implementing SAP Internet solutions and
the resulting increase in agility, including Novartis Services, a Novartis company based in Basel, Switzerland. "The
SAP Internet procurement solution represented the ideal way for us to empower our end
users and reduce overall procurement costs while improving efficiency and service,"
said Klaus-Peter Sehling, head of IT for Novartis Services, a global leader in the life
sciences focused on improved health and well-being. "Because of the out-of-the box
integration with R/3-based business processes, implementation was straightforward and now
requires minimal maintenance effort. The intuitive Web interface enabled us to quickly
deploy an employee procurement solution to more than 2,000 users."
Employment National, a major
recruitment and employee services firm with headquarters in Sydney, Australia, also found
SAP Internet solutions easy to deploy while offering significant benefits, according to
Dick Hancock, manager of IT user services. "Using SAP's Internet solutions, we have
rolled out a suite of employee self-service applications, including an employee purchasing
solution, to our more than 1,400 employees in more than 200 offices throughout
Australia," Hancock said. "We expect to realize considerable cost savings in our
purchasing and human resources organizations over the next several years."
SAP Internet Solutions Extend the Supply Chain
Another popular role for the Internet is bringing companies closer to their partners
through the creation of virtual supply chains. Mercedes
Benz Japan, for example, now provides many of its vendors with sales order entry and
tracking capabilities via its extranet. "Our Internet-enabled R/3 solution not only
increases the speed and efficiency of communication with our dealers for order entry and
tracking but also improves communication content reliability," said Tae Ikada, system
engineer, Mercedes Benz Japan. "This improved business-to-business communication in
turn means that we now have more resources to enhance the quality of our service and
SAP Business-to-Business Procurement and SAP Online Store
SAP recently delivered two new e-commerce solutions, SAP Business-to-Business Procurement and SAP
Online Store, that give customers comprehensive solutions for driving business activities
over the Internet. SAP Business-to-Business Procurement leverages the integration and
strength of SAP technology and SAP Business Workflow with a new Web-based user interface
that handles the entire requisition-to-payment cycle via one easy-to-use single-entry
screen. End users are empowered to purchase goods and services directly from their
desktops while the purchasing department maintains the benefits of centralized control and
power and can refocus on strategic purchasing operations and economies of scale.
Gruner + Jahr AG & Co., a major publishing house
based in Hamburg, Germany, will roll out an SAP Internet-based procurement solution to
more than 2,000 employees early next year. "We selected SAP Internet technology
because of its comprehensive features and ease of use," said Peter Klotz, director of
facilities management at Gruner + Jahr. "We expect that this solution will greatly
streamline our MRO (material repair and operations) processes using an electronic catalog,
provide better overall management control, and be readily embraced by our user base."
The SAP Online Store solution functionality covers the entire demand chain in a
comprehensive system, from the customer order in the store to warehouse logistics and
procurement processes in the main office to manufacturing. This end-to-end solution
provides store-level managers with improved access to information, greater control over
their local store activities, and the ability to analyze local market conditions and react
quickly to changing customer and business requirements.
"In our industry it's not enough to provide top products, we also have to make it
convenient for customers. That's where our SAP Internet solution comes in," said
George Rogers, senior staff analyst for Perkin-Elmer
Corp., the world leader in the development, manufacture and marketing of analytical
instrument and life sciences systems. "Within three months we were able to create an
advanced order entry Web site, working interactively with our customer service department.
Customer feedback has been extremely positive because they can create 'what if' scenarios
to leverage shipping costs. This can be a cumbersome and time-consuming process over the
For customers implementing e-commerce solutions, SAP provides full confidentiality,
integrity and authentication. SAP Internet solutions support all important Internet security
protocols, including secure socket layers (SSL), secure hyper text transfer (SHTTP) and
secure electronic transaction (SET), ensuring full business data protection.