SuccessApps: Successfactors and Google Apps

Successfactors (SFSF) recently announced integration into Google Apps (GOOG). I think this is a very important announcement. See what Phil Wainewright has to say about this. Bringing the Web, especially Web 2.0 into the enterprise. SAP, take note.Here is what Successfactors had to say about the integration.

The integration of SuccessFactors’ Performance and Talent Management suite with Google Apps collaborative products and other tools enables enterprises of any and all sizes to reap the benefits of Software as a Service and cloud computing (no hardware or software to download, install or maintain), and extends SuccessFactors’ mission to help companies better manage, motivate and engage their people to drive better business results.

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SAP’s on demand/SaaS ERP solution, codenamed A1S

My aim with this post is to summarize the information currently available on A1S. A1S has been in the works for at least 3 years and is SAP’s on demand or SaaS (Software as a service) ERP solution. According to ZDNet A1S is targeted to launch in 2008 and is part of SAP’s strategy to grow its customer base from 39,000 to 100,000 customers by 2010. SAP is planning to unveil A1S at an event in New York on Sept 19. A1S is designed for the mid-market and initially it will be hosted by SAP as an on demand solution. Later it will be available as an appliance that can be plugged in behind the firewall.Henning Kagermann’s (CEO of SAP AG) recent presentations provide more A1S hints. Here is SAP’s 2007 Q2 analyst presentation and also the May 2007 Sanford Bernstein presentation. On page 26 Kagermann summarizes the salient features of A1S:

  • A New Product: Broad cross-industry coverage, enterprise SOA by design, model-based design, configuration via business questions, and self-service & embedded training.
  • A New Business Model: Try-Run-Adapt, on demand, embedded services & remote management, order of magnitude lower TCO, and quality/robustness is key.

In this blog post searchSAP talks about SAP’s mid-market push including A1S. Here Venderprisey summarizes some SaaS blog postings including an interesting reference to A1S. The Register and others suggest that SAP picked the Sept date to overlap with the Salesforce Dreamforce conference.Hasso Plattner’s “new idea” presentation is basically the technical underpinnings of A1S. You can see the keynote here, however you’ll have to register first. SAP calls A1S, Enterprise SOA by Design vs SAP ERP it calls Enterprise SOA by Evolution. Here is a list of the new idea aspects of Plattner’s “New Idea”: in-memory databases, real-time analytics, harmonized UI, cloud computing, on-demand, events & triggers, modular deployment, model-based configuration, no code exposed, new markets, community, standards and finally SOA.Competitors include: and its AppExchange marketplace for on demand applications, Oracle on demand, and Workday, co-founded by Mr. Peoplesoft himself, Dave Duffield, is also an interesting play. They market Workday as: On-Demand Enterprise Business Services.Also see my post regarding integration between SaaS solutions and SAP.I’m sure we’ll know more after September 19.

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Jack Welch / Lars Dalgaard Keynote video

I really enjoyed the keynote QA of Jack Welch and Lars Dalgaard during the Successfactors User conference earlier in June. You may view it here, after entering some contact info. You will need Windows Media player or Real player to view it.Enjoy!

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Jack Welch Keynote at SuccessConnect in New York

I attended the SuccessConnect keynote of Jack Welch and Lars Dalgaard in New York on June 7, 2007. You can find a short video here: Keynote Video. Carlos Watson did a great job moderating the Q&A session. [Update: You’ll find the long version of Jack’s keynote here.]The following comments from Jack and Lars were the most memorable for me:

  • Jack: HR should be equal to Finance in corporate America. People first, then strategy.
  • Lars: Megatrends (e.g., baby boomer’s leaving the work force) are forcing corporate America to elevate HR’s role in the organization.
  • Jack: Managers should commit to telling employees where they stand — the good and the bad, the Stars and the low-performers. HR needs Sarbanes-Oxley like compliance. “Phony appraisals are a SIN!”
  • Jack: 20/70/10 rule: Let 10% of the non-performers go, highly reward the top 20% and compensate the middle 70% well.
  • Lars: Most important interview question — “What did your mom teach you?”
  • Jack: Most important interview question — “Tell me about your previous job?” If the person has a victim mentality then let them go. If you find a star, then hire them on the spot. Don’t send them to HR and don’t let them leave the building. Give them love!
  • Jack: Terminate people with dignity. Help them find another job. They will be a reference — good or bad — you want them to be a good reference. Spend a lot of time with them after they leave the company.
  • Jack: The following are the top 3 character traits of a leader:
    1. Authenticity: Top character trait as a leader. Be real and true to yourself.
    2. Resilience: If a leader falls, how do they get back on the horse!
    3. Ability to look around corners: This is a leader’s secret sauce. Their ability to see around corners to spot hidden trends and changes in the direction of a business.
  • Jack: The compensation system should align with what you want to achieve as a leader.
  • Jack: Performance gets you in the game, aligning with company values gets you promoted. For example: If a manager delivers the numbers, but doesn’t life the company values — BAD, get them out. Long term they will destroy the company. Top performers are people who align with company values and deliver the numbers.

Jack’s final comment was the most important. Candor with your employees and management is the most important thing in business.What do you think of Jack’s approach and management style?

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SuccessConnect 2007 in New York

This week I’ll be in New York to attend the 2007 SuccessFactors User Conference.  Jack Welch will be the keynote and you can view the web cast on Thursday, June 8.

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