Working on the backend of an SAP HANA landscape doesn’t come with a lot of glory. When a seamless migration allows companies to reap the full benefits of moving to the cloud, customers and business partners don’t talk about the project managers carefully aligning strategic goals with IT means, or the engineers building, configuring and running that cloud. As with any ERP landscape, users are much more likely to share “credit” with their HANA cloud provider when things go wrong than when they go right.
Yet, behind the scenes, the SAP HANA cloud is driving a business revolution. Forward-looking companies are starting to understand that the move to HANA is an opportunity to streamline business processes, simplify their IT management model and set the stage for future innovation. With the right managed services partners, HANA becomes a vehicle to address longstanding pain points, and set the stage for future innovation.
Karma Automotive was founded in 2015, when the Wanxiang Group acquired the the assets of Fisker Automotive from bankruptcy. Since then, the company has been rapidly gearing up to manufacture luxury hybrid cars. In just over a year, Karma went from 240 to 625 employees, and now has facilities in Detroit, California and plans are underway for a facility in Hangzhou, China.
The company was named for Fisker’s original design, the Fisker Karma, an innovative, but ill-fated luxury car, and the name showed a company eager to turn past mistakes into future victories. Karma’s first model — the hybrid Revero — is designed to redeem the Fisker Karma, with impressive performance stats like 5.4 second 0 to 60 acceleration and the ability to reach 80% charge in just 24 minutes. Karma Automotive also has numerous other concepts in the works.
To succeed as a new automotive company, Karma needed tremendous agility. Their SAP HANA cloud landscape would have to be able to rapidly expand from concept to production, and adapt new technology and business processes more quickly than their established competitors.
Karma Automotive opted for a managed tier-one virtual private SAP S/4HANA cloud, built to break the then-current 1TB virtualization limit, and move rapidly to 12 TB. The system runs on an HPE CS900, with a second CS900 for DR at a secondary data center. This system supports the rapid technology cycle of the automotive industry, and ensures ultra-high uptime and low risk, while controlling costs.
Karma’s use of SAP Hybris and SAP Configure, Price and Quote showcases the company’s forward-looking approach to SAP HANA cloud innovation. These tools allow Karma to address the demanding luxury market, offering configurable products synchronized with its rapidly evolving offerings. Customers receive a flawless experience through the product ordering cycle, with consistent pricing and configuration strategies across all platforms. Karma is able to track results and adapt its marketing and product strategies — all at the speed of the market.
New England Biolabs
New England BioLabs (NEB) describes itself as a company created “by scientists, for scientists.” It was founded in 1974 as a collectively run lab, focusing on innovative life sciences industry products, backed up by expert customer support. Although the company has grown into a genomic enzyme production and R&D leader, NEB bench scientists still answer product queries, to ensure customers always receive the most accurate and reliable information.
As a biotech leader, NEB has undergone rapid growth and product diversification. To support this growth and benefit from real-time BI, NEB made the decision to migrate their SAP ERP to the SAP HANA cloud, with an MSP providing SAP hosting, Basis and security managed services. This journey includes SAP HANA Live, providing quick ROI on a multi-phase migration process with real-time operational reporting.
This SAP HANA backend supports the NEBnow Freezer Program — a revolutionary approach to delivering reagents to laboratories. Computer controlled freezer kiosks are stocked with NEB products according to the customers’ needs, and products are consolidated and shipped, reducing environmental impact and cost.
When researchers need a particular NEB product, they just walk to the freezer, enter their login credentials, locate their product (shown by an on-screen product map), scan it and checkout. The freezer is automatically restocked by NEBnow, removing the need to place restocking orders, and ensuring labs never run out of necessary enzymes and reagents. By handling the complex logistics of ordering and shipping biological supplies, NEBnow increases efficiency and decreases oversight costs — both in small research labs and large, complex organizations.
Carlisle Construction Materials, Inc.
For Carlisle Construction Materials, the biggest SAP HANA cloud innovation was the boost it gave to business performance and efficiency. Founded in 1917, Carlisle provides a wide range of products in the residential and commercial construction industries. These products are sold through a large and diverse portfolio of brands, and a complex, multi-channel sales infrastructure.
As with so many established companies, however, Carlisle’s IT landscape had not kept up with its growth, or the maturation of ERP. Its old SAP ERP system was underpowered and its data needed to be cleaned up, resulting in poor performance and decreased productivity. Carlisle also lacked the modern BI and analytics it needed to strategically manage its brand portfolio.
Carlisle’s GRC program was also in need of revision. The company’s security model had become impossibly complex (there were 3,000 security roles for just 700 users) resulting in consistently poor audit findings and frustrating, expensive and unsuccessful remediation. The company’s decision to move to the SAP HANA cloud wasn’t just a play for incremental improvement — it was an ambitious program to transform an outdated IT infrastructure into a cutting-edge ERP landscape and security redesign.
Carlisle worked with their managed services provider to design, test and build an SAP HANA cloud landscape using SAP BW to increase speed and BOBJ to turbocharge their reporting and analytic insight. The MSP’s Proof of Concept lab allowed the provider to build a landscape that took full advantage of SAP HANA speed, simplifying data modelling, reducing future maintenance requirements and building a landscape with six times faster response. Data was cleaned up, the data footprint was reduced, and stakeholders were provided with real-time data, enabling better responsiveness and smarter business decisions.
Carlisle underwent even more massive GRC changes in the SAP HANA cloud, replacing its laborious, document-centric processes with an automated SAP GRC solution. In addition to dramatically improving their audit results, Carlisle was able to:
- Replace time-consuming document review with real-time monitoring
- Cut security roles from 3,000 to 70
- Slash security costs across testing, administration, auditing and remediation
- Reduce security and compliance risk
ROI on Carlisle’s revamp was rapid, and the benefits have continued to accrue. Rather than struggling with its ERP landscape, Carlisle is able to fully utilize the SAP HANA cloud to stay ahead of the competition, with better business insights and higher productivity.
The SAP HANA Cloud Can Be a Powerful Tool for Innovation
Like any tool, the SAP HANA cloud is only as good as the people using it, and only as innovative as the projects it is used for. To take your business to the next level, your SAP landscape requires the right combination of business acumen, IT strategy and technical know-how. The right MSP can work behind the scenes to bridge the gap between business and IT.