By Karuna Mukherjea, Sr Director Product Marketing, SAP
SAPinsider Financials continues to be one the most important events for our Finance and EPM Community. As always the conference surpassed our expectations in terms of attendance, customer interactions and partner participation. Starting with the Keynote on the first day which included a stellar panel – Thack Brown, Bill McNee and Celina Rogers to the several product presentations and product demos, all talked about the innovation that SAP was doing for Finance and EPM and really focusing on “Simplicity”, “Consumer grade UI” and “Real Time.
The term that resonated really well with the attendees was around “The Perfect Enterprise” which is really about solutions being built for the business users to effectively manage organizations.
I also noticed how well attended were sessions around Financial Planning & Analysis and Accounting and Financial Close. We had a very busy Solution Center with meetings scheduled with the experts starting at 8:00 AM every morning and going on till past 5:00 PM every day. The customers and partners came with enthusiasm to hear all the phenomenal stories about innovations from SAP and other fellow customers as well. I also personally think that the beautiful venue, Wynn Las Vegas, contributed to the positive energy. After all , being surrounded by fresh flowers arrangements does bring a smile! When a customer shows up for a session starting at 4:30 PM in Las Vegas you know they are really interested in the topic. EPM topics continue to stay top of mind for customers.
My key takeaways from the event from last week
- Our average EPM customer and prospect has evolved significantly. The same customer 2 -3 years ago was having a conversation around timelines to implementing an EPM solution, where now the conversation is more about when can we take this to cloud and how can we embed collaboration into our EPM system
- Customers want to secure their investment in EPM solutions and really broaden the scope and deployment of the EPM footprint. While a majority have implemented our flagship product, SAP Business Planning and Consolidation, they would now like to expand to other solutions like SAP Profitability and Cost Management or Accounting and Financial Close.
- Our recently launched solution, SAP Cloud for Planning, the brand new solution for FP&A in the Cloud, was of high interest to customers, partners and prospects. They were confident in the vision and roadmap that SAP is demonstrating in the EPM space.
- Partners continue to play a very important role with us whether as implementers of our solutions or as strategic advisors to our customers. We had the pleasure of having several conversations with customers and partners on the product footprint and roadmaps.
- Sessions around Business Planning and Consolidation and Accounting & Financial Close had standing room only! We also had a really good chance to hear customer success stories with these solutions as well.
As we wind down from this year, compare notes with our fellow colleagues and de-brief with the conference organizers, the wheels are already in motion for the next event planning in June 2015, SAPinsider Financials Nice.
We look forward to seeing you in Nice soon!