It's halfway through Jumpstart Day here at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas and already the Reporting and Analytics, Managing Your SAP Projects, and Enterprise Mobility 2012 events are producing useful and practical advice for SAP users. I've been trying to catch as many sessions as possible and here's a few gems I've gathered up already.
"If your mobile app requires a lot of training, then your designers have missed the point of mobility," said Jim Cameron of ExpertIG in his morning session, "A Detailed Guide to Conducting an Enterprise Mobility Assessment--Before Beginning Your Project." Cameron's point is well-taken. He further explained that an overly complicated experience can severely limit adoption of a mobile app, and widespread adoption is what mobility is all about.
Cameron also emphasized the value of a pilot project for a mobility initiative and described the various types of pilot projects including a limited rollout pilot, a validation pilot, a demonstration pilot, and a prototype which involves more users. And true to his topic, Cameron even issued a quick attendee poll mid-session using a QR code on his presentation screen.
In "Mobile BI: How to Integrate Mobility into Your Business Intelligence Strategy", PwC's Olu Ojo and Frank Rinaldi provided some very practical tips that a first-time mobile BI team might not come across otherwise. For example, "Think about your licensing model BEFORE you deploy," Rinaldi said, relating the story of a company he worked with that didn't do that. The result? The company found they didn't have the budget for enough licenses after deployment and wound up with a great implementation with very few users accessing the information.
Rinaldi also suggests mobile BI initiatives not use existing BI reports as a jumping off point. Instead, start with the most important KPIs and build mobile reports that feature them. During the session, Ojo showed some useful demos emphasizing the variety of devices, formats and security levels mobile BI has to work with to achieve widespread use.
I also caught a bit of Ingo Hilgefort's portion of "Lessons for Preparing, Deploying, and Optimizing SAP BusinessObjects BI 4.0 SP 4 (Including Feature Pack 3)" and as you'd expect, SAP Canada's Hilgefort provided a healthy mix of roadmap information and user advice. Among his practical tips, Hilgefort pointed out to attendees that "BI 4 is memory hungry" so users should carefully consider how much memory is dedicated to the various processes required in a BI environment.
I'm noticing the smaller session size at Jumpstart Day provides the perfect opportunity for attendees to ask more questions and engage presenters in more discussion. So there's been a healthy exchange at each session I've been in.
And that's only the first couple hours!
To get more updates, be sure to check the associated hash tags on Twitter:
#mobility2012 (for Enterprise Mobility) #Proejcts2012 (for Managing Your SAP Projects) #Reporting2012 (for Reporting and Analytics)
And if you're here in Las Vegas, be sure to check out the SAPexperts Theater tomorrow next to the SAPinsider booth where we'll host some live sessions, panel discussions and interviews. Here's a brief preview of what you can catch there tomorrow:
10:45 Ingo Hilgefort will provide an update on the integration of SAP BusinessObjects BI and SAP NetWeaver BW with SP 4.
11:30 I'll interview Kerry Brown, SAP's VP of enablement, about training programs
12:00 Larry Bull and Priya Sethuraman of the Project Management Institute will join me for a chat about organizational project management and certification
1:30 Gerald Metzger of PwC will stop by for an interview on post-acquisition strategies for SAP
2:00 I'll interview David Szweda of Arizona Chemical about its use of SAP BusinessObjects
3:00 SAPexperts' Scott Wallask will host a BusinessObjects panel on avoiding dashboard pitfalls and perils.
And if you can't make it here, be sure to watch Sanjay Poonen's keynote, "How to Transform Your Enterprise with Mobile, Big Data and Analytics" here on the Insider Learning Network tomorrow at 11:30 a.m. Eastern, 8:30 a.m. Pacific.