Exciting News regarding SAP IBP Solutions

Hello and welcome to this post. We have some exciting news to share if you are interested in ramping up on SAP Integrated Business Planning IBP Solution.

Here is the roadmap for this post:

1.   What just happened?

2.   Why pay attention?

3.   What’s the gap?

4.   How did it go?

5.   How to get in?

What just happened?

We just concluded our first workshop in 2017 on SAP IBP.

Highlights:

  • Live instructor led hands-on virtual 4-day workshop.
  • Based on the latest SAP IBP 1611 release.
  • Sold-out event with ten learners.
  • Conducted by three SAP IBP experienced instructors for optimal instructor – learner coverage.

Why pay attention?

SAP has really walked the talk on Digital Transformation of Supply Chains with their modern, flexible, powerful, and social SAP IBP platform and applications.

Let's examine a few capabilities of the SAP IBP solution to make our point. SAP IBP's native Excel UI based flexible planning views enable business users to self-configure data & charts as needed. Business users can either work with IT to enhance the data model / calculations of the underlying IBP HANA model or just enhance the model with new data elements and calculations in additional Excel worksheets as needs evolve. This brings the two conflicting needs together: how to enable agile planning models while retaining robust data integration with ERP. You can finally have your cake and eat it too.

The modeling flexibility SAP IBP provides with its complete independence from SAP ERP / SCM data models is unprecedented. It enables a rich diverse set of use cases across industries and time horizons beyond just SCM focused use cases - a true integrated business planning solution for the enterprise which also lets the value network in with its IBP Control Tower solution.

As an example, customers can now model and plan new products in SAP IBP for which master data has not yet been defined in the underlying ERP system. SAP IBP preserves and seamlessly blends your planning information of pre-ERP stage with ERP master / transactional data as it comes into play.

Imagine what this can do in Pharmaceutical Long Term Planning use case, where you need to blend existing and new molecules in your planning with only existing molecules master data coming from SAP ERP. Imagine the power to run a range of short, mid, or long term demand / capacity scenarios without resulting into disconnected models.

Now you can model US FDA new product approvals / timing of approval and impact of warning letters as result of US FDA inspection of the manufacturing facilities just for yourself without impacting the published plan. The focus on enterprise / value network wide scenarios and financial impact analysis is a breath of fresh air from the largely linear and supply chain centric processes enabled by yesterday's solutions like SAP SCM (APO).

What’s the gap?

We are on a mission to help our SCM customers get hard benefits and value from SAP IBP. The SAP IBP solution sells itself just on the cool technology features (HANA, Cloud, Fiori...). However, we are focused on helping customers deploy its full modeling power and flexibility to drive hard business value.

So, while it’s true that SAP HANA speed is a must-have to enable granular in-the-moment planning, and that SAP Cloud significantly simplifies the IT side of the equation, we are more focused on the modeling flexibility and resiliency of the SAP IBP applications as business evolve with a need to rapidly reconfigure planning models. We believe this is what delivers the true business adoption and the hard value generation that the Board is looking for.

We believe customers need to play with SAP IBP in an immersive case study / mock implementation based workshop setting to appreciate the full power of SAP IBP solution. This bridges the gap between customer demonstrations that only scratch the surface and full blown Proof of Concept exercises which can takes weeks to run. This is how we ran the recently concluded SAP IBP workshop.

SAP IBP is similar to painting in many aspects: the colors can be combined to produce endless works of art to suit all cultures & audiences. Modeling in SAP IBP is as much art as it is science and learning about industry specific use cases and modeling best practices is essential to groom SAP SCM/APO customer team members or consultants into successful SAP IBP modelers. GitaCloud is committed to enabling our customers through this transformation to deliver strong, balanced, and resilient supply chains and businesses.  

This is a high-stakes business and solution transformation conversation as SAP ECC / SAP SCM (APO) world transforms to SAP S/4 HANA and SAP IBP world going forward. To be successful in this rapidly transforming solution landscape, you need to be intimately familiar with both the source and destination solution states to lead your organization effectively through this journey. It’s crucial to get the in-transit states right: hybrid environments across IBP and APO as your organization matures to take advantage of more mature capabilities like Multi-Stage Inventory Optimization. There are many ways in which you can slice this planning capability roadmap challenge. Transformation roadmaps and Business Release Strategy are key strategy elements to get right. Equally crucial is factoring in the shifting sands of ECC vs. S/4 HANA as you deploy SAP IBP and SAP APO hybrid landscapes.

We believe taking learners through a case study / mock implementation in the workshop and discussing the architecture and modeling choices is a far more effective way to learn than merely learning the configuration entity relationships and mechanically executing configuration steps.

How did it go?

The Learners provided very positive feedback on the SAP IBP workshop. Learners specially appreciated the rich business context and modeling best practices on top of the SAP IBP configuration concepts baseline.

We received across the board positive feedback from learners on this workshop (4 or 5 ratings from all who provided written feedback - on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the best). 

Sample feedback from learners: 

Learner # 1:

What worked for me:

  • Very patient and calm approach to questions from me and going extra length to resolve queries.
  • Bringing in personal experience in business scenarios and learnings
  • not a rote based instruction
  • Good hands on support

Learner # 2: 

  • Topics of IBP are well covered by instructors.
  • Teaching method was good and explanations are good.

Learner # 3:

  • Structured sessions
  • Hands on exercises
  • Real project experience sharing
  • Quality of Faculty 

How do you get in?

Given high level of interest from others who missed out on the first workshop, we are running the SAP IBP workshop again starting February 25th. We will also run this workshop starting April 1st. 

Who should sign-up?

  • Customer business/IT team members tasked with evaluating SAP IBP who would like to test drive SAP IBP in detail in rapid time.
  • SAP SCM-APO or ERP functional consultants who are excited about the modern SAP IBP solutions and what GitaCloud can offer.

Upcoming Workshops:

  • SAP IBP workshop starting Feb 25th, 2017
  • SAP IBP workshop starting April 1st, 2017

How do you sign-up:

Workshop Structure:

  • Part 1 - SAP IBP Overview: This section provided an overall grounding in the SAP IBP platform and applications. We covered IBP Business Context, SAP IBP Platform Overview, and SAP IBP Applications Overview (IBP S&OP, IBP Demand, IBP Inventory, IBP Supply & Response, IBP Control Tower, SAP JAM) along with SAP IBP demonstrations.
  • Part 2 - SAP IBP Configuration: This section provided a detailed hands-on learning environment to understand SAP IBP configuration building blocks against specific business requirements. We covered basic configuration concepts (attributes, master data types, planning levels, key figures, etc.) as well as advanced configuration concepts (UOM / Currency conversion, Planning Operators, Planning Area Management. etc.). 
  • Part 3 - SAP IBP Implementation: This section provided real-world lessons learned and best practices to design IBP models and implement IBP. We took the group through a mock implementation to highlight how raw business requirements and data files are transformed into a working IBP model.

Hope you enjoyed this post and thank you for your attention. If so, please like and share this post to spread the word in your professional network.

We welcome your questions, thoughts, or ideas on how to enhance value-add from SAP IBP solutions. You can reach me at ashutosh@GitaCloud.com

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Ashutosh Bansal is the Founder & CEO of GitaCloud. 

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About GitaCloud

Incorporated in Delaware in 2015, GitaCloud is on a mission to help people and enterprises make better decisions. GitaCloud is closely partnered with SAP in NA and APJ regions. GitaCloud Principals are come from leadership positions at SAP / Big 4 consulting firms as well as SCM VP/SVP level executives from Industry. We have the collective experience of helping 50+ of leading Fortune 500 companies through their SCM / Business Transformation in Integrated Business Planning domain.

GitaCloud provides a comprehensive range of SAP IBP related services.

For more information, please visit www.GitaCloud.com