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Rest gently - C/4 Hana

The CRM system C/4 announced and planned by SAP CEO Bill McDermott is stillborn - unnecessary and expensive. A blunt weapon against Salesforce and others.
November 29, 2018
This text has been automatically translated from German to English.

The idea was not the worst: After many years of experimentation and numerous acquisitions, consolidation was now to take place. The result would have to be a CRM suite that would put all existing offerings in the shade. A good and correct plan, but unfortunately years too late.

SAP CEO Bill McDermott has made a crucial mistake in recent years: As a non-technical person, he hoped to be able to shape a path to a successful future for SAP with a technical solution, such as cloud computing, Hana and now C/4.

Thus, one wants to shout to poor Bill, cobbler, stick to your last. As a recognized and successful salesman, he should have discussed with his customers in order to understand and then satisfy their challenges and wishes. The SAP community is still all about functionality and business processes.

Technology is merely a tool. Cloud computing is a technical function, just as virtualization, client/server computing or mainframes were before.

SAP has hardly interfered in these technical developments, but has drawn on the know-how of its partners: Without Hewlett-Packard, R/3 would almost have failed; without VMware, there would hardly have been a successful virtualization for ERP/ECC 6.0. Many more examples could be listed.

The cartoon by Robert Platzgummer (1975 to 2016) was first published in the E-3 September 2017 issue. The "run simple" campaign invented by SAP CEO Bill McDermott was down and dead - no one in the SAP community understood the simple approach.

Now SAP's next dilemma: C/4. The planned CRM - Customer Experience Suite - has a real core! Users want consistent, consolidated and verified end-to-end business processes in this and many other areas.

What SAP exemplified with R/3 and later perfected with ERP/ECC 6.0 and SAP Business Suite 7, every SAP existing customer would like to see in the CRM area as well.

But SAP slept through CRM - just as it did the Internet at the turn of the millennium. Now it is trying to build a CRM suite with the existing CRM software from SAP Business Suite 7 and numerous acquisitions including Hybris.

A project that could succeed, but it will take a lot of time and resources. The finished product must then be customized for SAP's existing customers, and it must be tested and trained. C/4 must be integrated into the existing setup and workflow processes. The end-to-end processes must be synchronized.

SAP's existing customers can expect a "finished" C/4 in 2025 at the earliest. The CRM suite Salesforce harmonizes excellently with SAP Business Suite. So why wait? The SAP CRM suite is stillborn.

The gap to the competitors is too large to repeat the ERP market success and to gain a unique selling proposition with CRM. C/4 is becoming a beautiful corpse.

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Working on the SAP basis is crucial for successful S/4 conversion. 

This gives the Competence Center strategic importance for existing SAP customers. Regardless of the S/4 Hana operating model, topics such as Automation, Monitoring, Security, Application Lifecycle Management and Data Management the basis for S/4 operations.

For the second time, E3 magazine is organizing a summit for the SAP community in Salzburg to provide comprehensive information on all aspects of S/4 Hana groundwork. All information about the event can be found here:

SAP Competence Center Summit 2024


Event Room, FourSide Hotel Salzburg,
At the exhibition center 2,
A-5020 Salzburg

Event date

June 5 and 6, 2024

Regular ticket:

€ 590 excl. VAT


Event Room, Hotel Hilton Heidelberg,
Kurfürstenanlage 1,
69115 Heidelberg

Event date

28 and 29 February 2024


Regular ticket
EUR 590 excl. VAT
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.