Focused solutions on top of SAP Solution Manager deliver ready-to-run solutions for specific sub-market needs. Despite being specific, they still provide an industry standard and thus avoid costly custom code for customers. Focused Build for SAP Solution Manager provides an out-of-the-box, and integrated, tool-supported methodology to manage requirements and software development in large, agile innovation projects like SAP S/4 HANA implementations.
With its release 7.2, SAP Solution Manager has evolved into a stable and robust platform that offers integrated end-to-end processes to its well-over 15,000 customers. Customer feedback as well as analyst reports show that SAP Solution Manager is seen among the market leaders in the IT management industry. However, there always is room for improvement, and of course we continuously strive to perfect our offering.
The long tail dilemma
As the maturity of processes and scenarios is perceived to be very high, the challenge is how to deliver innovation on top of SAP Solution Manager 7.2. When customers have special innovation needs and we deliver this innovation with the standard product, we face the danger of creating long tail in the product. This means that there is a growing portion of software that is not relevant to all customers but perhaps only to 300 or 500 customers. At the same time, the product will necessarily get more complex – and this complexity has to be shouldered by the entire customer base, whether they need the innovation or not.
Downside of custom code
The alternative is refrain from delivering processes that do not cater to the needs of a vast majority of customers. But there is a downside here, too: If you as a customer had a special need for SAP Solution Manager, you would have to develop the functions as custom code on top of SAP Solution Manager on your own. This would entail costs for coding, documentation, training, and onboarding of your staff as well as costly maintenance activities. With an upgrade, you would have to develop the software all over again. The same arguments hold true for solutions outside SAP Solution Manager: Here, you face the same risks plus you have to factor in the additional license cost.
Benefits of Focused Solutions
This is where the new concept of focused solutions can help. Focused solutions (FS) deliver solutions for special customer needs on top of SAP Solution Manager, avoiding costly custom code, or partner solutions. The benefits are quite obvious:
· You do not face any coding cost as SAP delivers a standard solution. This is very important, as it also eliminates the variety of processes by a standardized reference process. Tools to support this process come with the solution.
· There is significantly less training cost for your projects as SAP delivers all knowledge required with the focused solution.
· The upgrade risk is eliminated as SAP delivers standard upgrades. This means that you license the focused solution once and SAP promises to keep this solution running also on future releases – which is a major differentiator in the industry.
· As the licensing model is very simple through rental licenses, it is easy to adapt the number of licenses to your needs. There is no risk of licensing shelf-ware.
· There are no integration issues because SAP delivers focused solutions based on the proven SAP Solution Manager standard.
· Needless to say, the focused solutions are fully integrated in SAP Solution Manager 7.2.
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