SAP AG yesterday officially rolled out the employee portal, or Workplace, portion of its mySAP.com internet strategy. To coincide with the launch, SAP said it would be implementing the portal for 20 of its existing R/3 customers, and said more customers are waiting in the wings. The Workplace was previewed for the first time at […]
SAP AG yesterday officially rolled out the employee portal, or Workplace, portion of its mySAP.com internet strategy. To coincide with the launch, SAP said it would be implementing the portal for 20 of its existing R/3 customers, and said more customers are waiting in the wings.
The Workplace was previewed for the first time at this year’s Sapphire user conference in Philadelphia in September. It is basically an AOL-style portal interface which gives personalized, single sign on access to all SAP’s applications, third party applications and internet-based content and services.
Chris Larson, SAP’s senior VP and executive director of mySAP.com, told ComputerWire that the workplace portal interface would be shipped as part of a CD that also contains the company’s R/3 and New Dimension applications, although not all of the latter – notably the customer relationship management modules – are available yet. Additional applications will be added over time, Larson said.
He added that SAP would personally handle the implementation of the portal for the first 20 customers, monitoring their usage closely and getting regular feedback from the customers about any possible problems or technical glitches. R/3 users will be offered a special deal for upgrading to mySAP.com, he said, and thereafter pricing will be based on users’ roles rather than on a per application basis, as was the case in the past.
The second major portion of mySAP.com, the marketplace, is still in preview stage but is due to be rolled out within the next four to five weeks, Larson said. The marketplace extends the employee workspace by enabling the user to interact with partners and suppliers in a collaborative e-commerce environment. Larson said there were still issues with scalability and support and with such things as on-line support.
He said that SAP is still deciding whether it would be best for it to provide the front line support, and then direct the customers to the relevant partners or web sites concerned. Either way, we’ll be leveraging the support infrastructure and call centers we already have in place for all our systems, he said. In terms of pricing, he said SAP would probably charge both a subscription fee and transaction charges for participating in the marketplace, although he said the exact fee would vary according to the partner. It can’t be one size fits all, he said. Transaction charges make sense for some people, like buyers, but in other cases they don’t make sense at all.