Reinventing the Sales Process at SAP

« I had the pleasure of working with Moritz on one of the largest global deals in the history of SAP. The deal established a long-term strategic partnership with SAP’s largest global account and set the stage for SAP’s strategic global enterprise account relationship management program, which was one of SAP’s most successful programs. »

Steve Cameron

VP Global Professional Services – Transact Division at Blackboard | www.sap.com

In a nutshell…

Market leaders in software and IT tend to progressively lose touch with users and influencers as a result of increasing product complexity.
To minimize this risk, Moritz led a structural internal transformation at SAP: the creation of multiple organizations in business consulting and value engineering.
These organizations are now developed worldwide, are 500+ employees strong, and span all SAP value propositions.

  • THE CHALLENGE

    From inherent to perceived product value

    Like all the major players, SAP spent the greater part of the 90’s focusing on inherent product value, as opposed to perceived product value. The latter was expected to be a natural consequence of the former.

    Products and solutions were sold on the sole basis of technical capabilities, features, and functions delivered. Years passing, and many releases later, SAP products had become so complex, only customers’ IT Departments were able to fully understand their benefits. The door was wide open to competitors with a leaner, trendier, more user oriented and outcomes focused pitch.

     

  • THE ANSWER

    Business consulting to enhance product understanding

    Sensing a weak spot in the sales process, SAP’s American CEO gave Moritz and a colleague the responsibility for kick-starting a business consulting team to support customers in their effort to articulate SAP value. They set up an organization of 10+ people that did not focus on product or technology, but concentrated on the value aspects and outcomes of an SAP implementation. These external consultants’ hours were billed to clients with a view to deliver detailed business cases highlighting the impact of an SAP implementation, and covering the whole of the SAP portfolio.

    Moving on to become an essential pre-sales activity

    Business consulting with a view to demonstrate SAP efficacy quite logically became known as an essential pre-sales tool, contradictory with a business model based on billable hours. The obvious decision was to internalize the process under the name of “value engineering”, and make it an integral part of key account management. Today, these departments position SAP in every relevant area of their customers’ development, from Marketing to Solutions Management and industry go-to-market, to name just a few.

  • THE OUTCOME

    From an idea to a rule

    Today, as a result of this initiative, SAP has Business Consulting & Value Engineering organizations of a significant size, employing over 500 experts worldwide. Each and every SAP proposal henceforth contains a value proposition tailored to the individual customer’s organization and strategy. The person who first took the lead of Value Engineering within the group is today the named Head of Strategy.