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SAP Partner Summit for SME 2024

The SAP Partner Summit for SME is an annual event held across three cities around the world. This year I-Business Network attended the Phoenix event to:

  1. Valuable Insights: The summit provides a wealth of information about SAP’s products and services, particularly those aimed at small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs). This includes updates on SAP Business One, SAP Business Technology Platform, SAP S/4HANA Cloud Public Edition, and the new SAP generative AI assistant “Joule” 1.
  2. Networking Opportunities: Attendees have the chance to connect with SAP executives and other solution providers. This provides a unique opportunity to build relationships, exchange ideas, and potentially form strategic partnerships 2.
  3. Educational Resources: The summit offers a range of educational resources to help partners stay informed, connected, and aligned with SAP’s ecosystem. This includes learning about AI with SAP, cloud future, and other cloud-native technologies to support customers’ growth and business transformation .

SAP Strategy for Small to Mid-Sized Enterprise

SAP used the summit to clarify and promote its strategy for serving customers in the SME space. This strategy is driving investments with a cloud focus:

  • Grow with SAP is the packaged version of its S/4 for HANA large enterprise product.
  • Partner Engagement is required to serve the large volume of customers and ensuring that the partners are educated is critical to success.
  • Artificial Intelligence will change business processes, how products are consumed and how they are developed.
SAP Strategy for SME

When compared to Oracle or Microsoft, SAP has always been the publisher squarely focused on developing business software. Although it has acquired and continues to develop its HANA in-memory database technology, SAP relies upon partnerships with technology companies that build Artificial Intelligence Large Language Models, Microsoft and Linux for operating systems and partners with many technology leaders. This strategy continues in its open ecosystem for the SAP Business Technology Platform (BTP) which will connect all SAP products to artificial intelligence and other cloud platforms.

SAP Provides Trust for ERP

Business management software holds the most valuable assets of a company. The customers, product information, and data stored in an ERP system are the basis for decisions which lead to the success or failure of an organization. Accordingly, SAP understands that its brand must create trust in the systems and the information it provides. Therefore, SAP invests heavily in security, reliability and stability for its products. SAP is not always the sexy choice, nor do they sell with hype, but you know it will be with you for the long haul.

The Power of the SAP Partner Community

The SAP Partner Summit for SME is an opportunity for the partners who sell, implement, enhance and educate customers to come together as a community. The bonds forged and nurtured over the years enable us to better serve our customers. In addition, the relationships with the SAP staff and leaders create influence for the future product priorities and development.

Partnerships are at the center of the SAP strategy for the SME market. SAP expects the partner community to extend the products with industry specific solutions. The event supported that goal with:

  • Explaining the product development strategy and roadmap.
  • Detailed sessions on upcoming extensibility for the SAP Business One web native client.
  • Showcase the leading edge solutions by partners for specific industries.

SAP Business One Forever!

The definition of small business and mid-sized enterprise varies by publisher. Although SAP continues to promote S/4 HANA Public Cloud to mid-market customers, it is clear that SAP Business One is the product for the vast majority of the SME market. Accordingly, “SAP Business One Forever” was the leading chant at the event.

SAP Business One combines the SAP expertise with the simplicity required for the lower end SAP’s addressable market.

  • The SAP Business One core application has all the required functionality for CRM, distribution, manufacturing, service and accounting.
  • The built in personalization tools and software development kit make Business One adaptable to most industries.
  • The SAP B1 open architecture allows quick and easy integrate with cloud applications

SAP Business One’s powerful core and adaptability has been the key to its success. Although B1 is currently not “true cloud,” the multi-tenant cloud control center and web client are about 90% there. With the upcoming release most “rich client” functionality will be browser based. As Business One transitions to cloud, the developers have re-architected the functionality for ease of use. For example, SAP Business One offers both serial and batch tracking along with multiple bin locations. In the new web client, this functionality has been consolidated into a single screen for simplified pick, pack and put away.

Key Takeaways

The SAP Partner Summit for SME 2024 was bigger and better than ever. SAP Business One remains a leading business management tool for small to mid-sized companies.

  • SAP needs to keep its focus on development for the cloud.
  • The partner community will need to adapt its extensions to the new web client to meet the demand of the digital generations.
  • Personalization without code has been the key to SAP Business One’s success. SAP needs to deliver on the promised personalization capabilities in the web client.

SAP Business One has been a strategic part of the SAP portfolio for the past 20 years. Business One not only serves the needs of the small business market, but acts as a defense against competitors trying to gain business from smaller divisions or the eco-system of its large enterprise customers. SAP has the wherewithal to make the required investments and appears committed to do so!

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