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The Qualtrics failure

Professor Hasso Plattner is at the levers and defines the members of the SAP Executive Board. Despite customer dissatisfaction, little changes and many cooks spoil the broth - Qualtrics provides little insight into this.
Peter M. Färbinger, E3 Magazine
April 30, 2020
This text has been automatically translated from German to English.

In the fall of 2019, those intimately familiar with the SAP community were disappointed: yet another SAP dual leadership! After Kagermann and Apotheker, Snabe and McDermott, now Morgan and Klein.

Customer satisfaction has not been helped - or as SAP's annual report puts it: Customer Loyalty/Net Promoter Score is minus six. No Qualtrics analysis can help.

Negative customer loyalty simply means that there are more existing customers who would not recommend SAP to others than loyal users who talk positively about SAP.

The recommendation rate ranges from minus 100 to plus 100. Last year, when the 2018 Annual Report was published, there was a great deal of excitement when the Net Promoter Score turned negative for the first time in SAP's history. In previous years, it had always been well into double digits and positive.

Those responsible at SAP already suspected this more than a year ago and issued a very modest target for the Net Promoter Score 2019: plus one. Customer loyalty was supposed to be just positive. Now the annual report for 2019 shows a shocking value of minus six.

The situation is expected to remain similarly disastrous. Those responsible expect a negative Net Promoter Score for this year as well. The SAP Annual Report states that the SAP Executive Board expects the Net Promoter Score to "improve" to minus three to minus one. SAP does not expect to see positive customer loyalty until 2021 at the earliest.

Who is to blame if the existing SAP customer is not satisfied, does not feel any loyalty and therefore no longer wants to recommend his long-standing ERP supplier? There is a lack of trust!

However, trust in the SAP community is more dependent on the people acting, i.e. the SAP Executive Board including the Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Professor Hasso Plattner.

The personnel policy on the SAP Executive Board over the past 20 years can at best be described as dynamic. The rapid succession of technical board members would fill several pages of E-3 magazine: Peter Zencke, Shai Agassi, Vishal Sikka, Bernd Leukert and now Jürgen Müller.

The picture is similar for the SAP CEOs: Henning Kagermann, Léo Apotheker, Jim Hagemann Snabe, Bill McDermott, Jennifer Morgan and Christian Klein.

Whether the ERP soup is oversalted or S/4 Hana is charring and dissolving into plumes of black smoke cannot be defined based on Customer Loyalty.

The fact is, with and without "customer experience" through Qualtrics, SAP's new dual leadership, Jennifer Morgan and Christian Klein, have a lot of work ahead of them to finally understand and act on what their existing customers want.

Qualtrics' software has been designed to give SAP's top management a realistic picture of the mood - customer experience - in the SAP community for a year now.

Obviously, customer satisfaction and referral rates are difficult to see through, even with Qualtrics software.

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


  • Hier besteht aber eine große Schere zwischen Titel und Inhalt. Oder ist das jetzt Clickbait?

    • Hallo Herr Schildner,

      ich bitte zu beachten, dass es sich hier um Satire handelt. Auch denke ich, dass kein allzu großer Unterschied zwischen Titel und Text besteht. Clickbait liegt uns fern.

      Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
      Peter Mavrakis, E-3 Magazin

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