Archive for December 2017

Winter 2017

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DOES YOUR APPLICATION MANAGEMENT SERVICES REMIND YOU OF AN INSURANCE COMMERCIAL? How to Avoid Mayhem with Titan’s Application Management Services!

I was watching my college team on Saturday and could not believe how many commercials were on. The one that stood out was with actor Dean Winters practicing his many test crash dummy impressions. The point of the commercial, how a simple incident turns into a bigger problem and conflagrates into a full five-alarm fire.

The funniest incident starts at a tailgate: the barbecue explodes erupting into a massive fire inside the car and sets off a chain reaction.

“And you were in such a hurry to get into the game?”, Winters continues. Does this humorous portrayal remind you how much we need insurance to cover the unpredictable and unforeseen?

You also need insurance for your SAP Applications!

Because the unexpected happens with your systems and applications and you need insurance for big and small fires. You need more than just insurance; you need a partner that is there for you when the fire alarm sounds – Titan’s Application Management Services (AMS).

Our AMS provide you with:
• Reliability
• Predictability and Flexibility
• Insights
• Value

Have you had one small incident engulf your entire system, time, resources, and your energy?

One of our clients had this problem, and we covered it. They called us, and we dove right in and resolved their Transport Layer Security (TLS) upgrade issue.

They were stable for many years on SAP and needed to upgrade TLS levels. The tests were successful in Development and Quality, but when it got to Production, the system crashed. What happened? Customer Sales Reps could not enter quotes and sales orders for two days.

The CIO called us to help, and we resolved the problem within a few hours.

They rely on Titan Consulting to fix their issues when they happen. We specialize in SAP systems: R/3, ECC, BW, BOBJ, CRM, and more. We provide project management, functional, Basis, security, and application development support for all their SAP systems as level 2 and level 3 support.

Another client uses our services as an extension of their IT organization because our rates are fair, predictable, and our service model is flexible.

They have a core team that handles most of level 1 and level 2 work, but at times, needs support due to the volume of tickets, incident urgency, or skill set.

Also, we provide level 3 and level 4 application support. Level 3 covers enhancements, roll-outs, and upgrades to their existing applications and systems. Level 4 is for new products or projects.

They acquired a new business, and we performed the roll-out of SAP modules across the US and Canada. Since our team has dedicated and named resources, we understood their business processes, configuration, and customization. We supplemented our support team with some additional consultants and could deliver the project in 10 weeks.

Our agreement has a defined rate card and getting a budget estimate, and planning was easy. We scoped the processes and customization that were needed and applied the rates to the estimated hours. The Capex was quickly compiled, and the roll-out plan was approved.

Also, we assisted their IT and Business with upgrades, training, enhancements, and new business processes.

Our AMS services provide insights that spotlight opportunities and threats to your SAP system. During our Quarterly Business Review (QBR), we provide data-driven insights into where you are spending your time and resources.

The dashboard is organized by functional area or by service level type that resources are consumed: in Finance or by Application Development. Understanding where the scatter diagram of incidents are coming from may also uncover where you need training, corrections, or additional support.

For another AMS client, we identified a pattern that suggested a need for training. In Finance, we saw a need for training after related tickets were submitted over a 6-month period. After some discussions with the controller, and due to resource promotions and turnover, knowledge transfer was required on Report Writer and AP processes.

At Titan Consulting, we always start with the end in mind so we recommended an intensive 4-hour workshop over a couple of days to review these suspect processes. The Finance team was pleased with the training because they wanted to avoid these repeated blocks and problems in the system.

Yes, our AMS offerings provide more than just insurance. We deliver reliable, predictable, and flexible services that help you run your business more effectively at a lower cost.

Do you want to avoid Mayhem and bring order and clarity to your SAP environments? Contact Blake Snider, blake@titanconsulting.net, or call him at 469-835-5358; or contact your Titan Consulting Director.

You can also see additional information on our AMS services at Titan Consulting, www.titanconsulting.net.

WHY SOME MOBILITY PROJECTS SUCCEED AND SOME DON’T? Let Me Synthesize Titan’s Mobility Success Factors!

Why do more than 80% of enterprise Mobility projects fail? And what do you need to do to be part of the 20% that succeeds!

I am going to synthesize the numerous conversations, presentations, working sessions and mobility projects to give you the actions you need to take to deliver your project as one of the successful 20%.

You can place the main challenges, hurdles, missteps, and myopia in the following areas:
• Project Results Take Too Long
• Happy and Unhappy Users
• Project Owner and Processes

I don’t want to scare you and say that if you don’t mobilize you die. It’s not that dramatic, but your competition is going to use a mobile platform to serve their customers better and maybe steal some of yours!

Smartphones and tablets are changing the way we run our lives and conduct business. Developing apps for a distributed enterprise is no easy task. Usual challenges include multiple technologies, highly distributed environments and computing networks often built on a hybrid infrastructure combining legacy systems with newer ones to work on a myriad of mobile devices.

Your mobile strategy does not have to be complex. In fact, the ROI should easily provide you with a 4:1 or 5:1 ROI or better. One of our clients invested about $200K in Titan’s easyPrice application and is realizing about a 2 million dollar benefit.

So, what are the success criteria?

“Why do these projects take so long?”
I have had several clients ask me this question. Mobility projects get bogged down for many reasons; infrastructure, functionality, user experience, sponsors, and conflicting objectives.

Success in mobile projects follow these simple principles:
• Follow agile project objective and deliver usable functionality, fast
• Focus on user experience and ease of use
• Collaborate with Business and IT

To start, focus on some quick wins in the shortest timeframe. An agile model best suits this approach. Build the apps as an extension of the enterprise transactional backbone. Typically, this is SAP ECC or S/4 HANA for our clients but could be Salesforce, Workday, or other leading enterprise applications.

By extending your SAP processes through easyApps, you ensure the integrity and controls in processing your mobile transactions. This solution includes your business rules, security, and integration for domestic or global implementations.

One of our clients started their mobility roadmap with easyPrice which mobilizes Quotes and Sales Orders. Or you can start with one of the back-office processes such as HR Benefits Requests, PTO Approval, or AP Invoice Approval.

“Why are users unhappy with their mobile applications?”
When I hear this question, it drives me batty! The most common complaints I hear are:
• “Our Sales Quoting app is not intuitive like Amazon or Uber.”
• “I am not a SAP user, why can’t I use functions I am most familiar with?”

Our “User First” approach allows us to focus on the screen and form size to simplify use and navigation on the devices they are familiar with, smartphones and tablets. This approach increases user acceptance and accelerates deployment and usage rates.

Developing the UI/UX with HTML5 adopts the ease of use and capabilities that mobile users use every day on their phone and tablets. Users like our easyApps because they work and they are comfortable with the navigation.

“Are building mobile apps an IT project?”
No, our experience with successful projects engages joint sponsorship with both Business and IT.

Jumping on the mobile app bandwagon is common these days. The number of ‘killer’ apps increases every day in the App Store. Still, more than 80% of these apps are never downloaded and used. Why?

The recipe for success for mobile apps demands participation and commitment by business users to design and test the app. The testing of the app by the users should identify more issues during test cycles rather than in the field.
Developers and users collaborate in an agile format to develop the look, feel, and processes to reap the capabilities of the mobile devices.

IT will continue to focus on the ERP transaction backbone, infrastructure, connectivity, security, and governance. These elements can’t be ignored and require consistency across your mobile platform.

We answered these questions and more for our clients, SAPPHIRE attendees, ASUG attendees, and other conferences.

Titan Software easyApps are designed and built to extend your business processes using native SAP integration. The same services integrate Salesforce, SuccessFactors, and other cloud and on-premise applications into the hands of your anytime, anywhere workforce.

Our Titan Software easyApps are designed to deliver business value to your mobile workforce with a focus on reducing your IT and Business TCO. We offer mobile solutions for Finance, Supply Chain, Customer Engagement and Human Resources.

Are you looking to a 4:1 or 5:1 ROI on your mobility project? If you are interested in seeing Titan’s easyApps, perform on every day mobile devices, contact Joseph Lamb, joseph@titanconsulting.net, or call him at 972-743-2872; or contact your Titan Consulting Director.

You can also see additional information on Titan Software at Titan Consulting.