SAP SAPPHIRE NOW 2019 – Hyper and Cloudy Experiences for Everyone

Greg Reeder |  June 2019

A few weeks ago, more than 20,000 people joined together for SAPPHIRE NOW + ASUG Conference, SAP’s premier annual event.  Leaders across lines of business and industry, ranging from government to supply chain to artificial intelligence came to share insight, solutions, services, awesome demos, and even some excellent barbecue.

On the SAPPHIRE NOW show floor, there were hands-on demos of the all-digital cockpit of Grand Prix race cars, self-driving supply chain robots, and high-speed hockey-puck-tracking to name a few.  But, thinking that you might want more than just fast cars, robots, and icy sports – I thought I’d share more about the event.

Why so hyper?

Hyperscale providers account for 68% of the Cloud services market. They operate a combined 320 data centers and, literally, tons of data and computing equipment.  Microsoft Azure alone has 2 million square feet of combined data center floor space and more than 40,000 miles of network cabling – if that doesn’t scream the scale of “hyper,” you might need more sugar in your Cloud-based juice box.

So, what does this have to do with SAP, SAPPHIRE NOW, and NS2 – the U.S. subsidiary responsible for SAP’s secure Cloud? The answer: A whole-hyper-bunch.

Having your head in the Clouds can be a good thing

Hasso Plattner announced at SAPPHIRE NOW that public Cloud is the future. More specifically, he said, “the public Cloud will be the most modern system and the lead system from now on for all development.”  Leading the way for all U.S.-based, secure Cloud services is SAP NS2.  And NS2 knows how tough that Cloud migration pill is to swallow.  So, we sent some of our best Cloud experts to provide details and offer insight to folks who visited SAPPHIRE NOW this year.

The SAP NS2 Cloud team explained how government agencies, utilities, financial services, and other organizations with security requirements can make the transition to the Cloud.  Part of this process is why SAP is collaborating with Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, and Google Cloud to provide customers with a single blueprint to support their transition and journey toward an intelligent enterprise.

Jennifer Morgan, president of Cloud Business Group, reinforced the SAP (and NS2) commitment during SAPPHIRE NOW: “Our customers are very clear about the business outcomes they expect to achieve when migrating to the Cloud — and that includes operational excellence and innovation.”

It’s not just about the Cloud  – NS2 recognizes that outstanding customer service and support make all the difference during migration and integration.

What do people really think?

Another area of focus that took center stage at the event was delivering better experiences for customers.  SAP recently acquired Qualtrics to combine the power of operational and experiential data.  Qualtrics is known for experience management software, but it’s not widely known is that more than 50 federal agencies use Qualtrics to improve the citizen experience, increase employee engagement, improve their reputation, and to boost public trust in government.

To get the experience data ball rolling, NS2 provides access to Qualtrics solutions in a FedRamp® environment – delivering a solid platform for those who need a more secure way to gather and analyze experience-plus-operational data.  Understanding the relationship across your data is critical – so you can focus on what matters and take action to get the best outcome.  Qualtrics Co-Founder Jared Smith echoed this at SAPPHIRE NOW: “Setting the right priorities often matters more than the execution,” he said. “If you execute on the wrong things, you don’t get to the right place.”

We weren’t the only ones talking about prioritizing and innovating – SAP and Apple also touched on their expanded partnership. When two of the biggest names in tech come together, you know it’s going to be big.  Talking about their shared commitment to improving security and overall user experience, SAP announced plans to expand its portfolio on iOS and Mac devices.  CORE ML, Apple’s Machine Learning framework, will now be available on the SAP Cloud Platform SDK for iOS.  It’s clear – SAP is determined to build a bigger and better Cloud.

What’s next?

Next year, SAPPHIRE NOW promises to be bigger and better. (I’m talking dolphins and Mickey big. Only kidding – or am I?) Just hearing about SAPPHIRE NOW (and counting down for next year!) doesn’t have to be the end of the discussion.  NS2 will be showcasing powerful Cloud solutions at an upcoming AWS Summit.  But why stop there?  We’re keeping the Cloud-ball rolling.  NS2 Labs – the innovative arm of NS2 is unleashing new capabilities for government, while the NS2 Mission Solutions team is building, delivering, and supporting special operations around the world every day.


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