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This teaching of controlling and regulating is often unknown. However, cybernetics in combination with technology, the teaching of technology for planning and production, would be a good guide for SAP CEO Christian Klein.
Peter M. Färbinger, E3 Magazine
July 9, 2020
This text has been automatically translated from German to English.

What does a company, a complex machine, a living organism need in a crisis situation? The answer always seems to be the same, regardless of the nature of the crisis.

It can be a global crisis, like the current corona pandemic. It can be a local crisis, like the incompatibility and non-integration of the numerous SAP acquisitions from the cloud computing sector.

The answer: Proper control and regulation to achieve planning security as well as productivity. Control, regulate and plan for maintaining health, manufacturing products, trading goods and providing services.

Cybernetics and technology are the two sides of the same coin, the assets of which SAP CEO Christian Klein should now own in the coming months.

Why should planning security currently be decisive against the background of cybernetics and technology? On closer analysis, SAP is sinking into chaos!

Christian Klein and his board members are very eager, committed and usually say the right thing in the moment. Unfortunately, this positive image masks the real problems.

Planning reliability using the example of Customer Net Promoter Score and AnyDB: In the 2018 annual report, a negative Net Promoter Score (Customer Loyalty) was reported for the first time in SAP's history.

SAP's existing customers were very dissatisfied in 2017 and 2018, and more users will not recommend SAP to others than those who would do so anyway.

Because SAP pretended to know where the problems were, they planned for a Net Promoter Score of plus one in 2019. Everyone can read about it in the 2019 annual report: Minus six is the result.

A close miss is also a miss! What is worrying is not "minus six", but the obvious state of affairs that the SAP Executive Board was unable to assess the situation correctly.

The Net Promoter Score continued to develop negatively, which shows that SAP has no idea about the state of the community and its existing customers. How can planning reliability be created here if SAP does not know the sensitivities on its own doorstep?

Control, regulate and plan: The science of cybernetics and technology does not seem to be widespread at SAP! The 2027/2030 maintenance extension for Business Suite 7 is similar to a complex machine and a highly dynamic organism.

The numerous control loops and systemic dependencies are a challenge. SAP made it very easy for itself: The maintenance of Suite 7 itself was extended and for the time being there was no explanation of the NetWeaver stacks Abap and Java, of the Compatibility Packs from S/4 and, of course, of AnyDB - without databases from IBM, Microsoft and Oracle there will also be no Suite 7 beyond 2025.

Ultimately, it is irresponsible of SAP to promise a maintenance extension but keep quiet about the details. E-3 Magazine twice asked SAP board member Jürgen Müller what planning certainty there is for Suite 7 existing customers with regard to AnyDB.

Apart from words to the effect that "you should rely on SAP to take care of the matter," there was nothing. With nice declarations of intent, existing customers will hardly be able to draw up a watertight plan for after 2025.

The word cybernetics is derived from ancient Greek and loosely translated means the art of steering. It refers to the ability to bring an ancient sailing ship safely and soundly from one Mediterranean port to the next - a very demanding and challenging task in those days.

Ulysses was on the road for twenty years. SAP needs a better helmsman - not just an intelligent, strategic head. Understanding control mechanisms, feedback, and complex controls requires knowledge gained from experience. Christian Klein wants to improve the Net Promoter Score by three to five percentage points.

The value therefore remains negative for 2020. What if the value becomes positive? We could be pleased that the majority of our own customers are once again recommending the company to others (customer loyalty). But it would also show that SAP is once again unable to correctly locate the SAP community.

The effort to create a better future at SAP under Christian Klein is almost palpable. It is an honest approach and great personal commitment. But AnyDB, cloud computing and many other topics also show that the SAP Executive Board has still not understood the SAP community.

Christian Klein has a highly motivated and brilliant team with his fellow board members Jürgen Müller and Thomas Saueressig. Intellectually, no challenge should be too complex for the three "musketeers. What is missing, of course, is time and experience, right?

Peter M. Färbinger, E3 Magazine

Peter M. Färbinger, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief E3 Magazine DE, US and ES (, AG, Freilassing (DE), E-Mail: and Tel. +49(0)8654/77130-21

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Work on SAP Basis is crucial for successful S/4 conversion. This gives the so-called Competence Center strategic importance among SAP's existing customers. Regardless of the operating model of an S/4 Hana, topics such as automation, monitoring, security, application lifecycle management, and data management are the basis for the operative S/4 operation. For the second time already, E3 Magazine is hosting a summit in Salzburg for the SAP community to get comprehensive information on all aspects of S/4 Hana groundwork. With an exhibition, expert presentations, and plenty to talk about, we again expect numerous existing customers, partners, and experts in Salzburg. E3 Magazine invites you to Salzburg for learning and exchange of ideas on June 5 and 6, 2024.


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The organizer is the E3 magazine of the publishing house AG. The presentations will be accompanied by an exhibition of selected SAP partners. The ticket price includes the attendance of all lectures of the Steampunk and BTP Summit 2024, the visit of the exhibition area, the participation in the evening event as well as the catering during the official program. The lecture program and the list of exhibitors and sponsors (SAP partners) will be published on this website in due time.