Empowering Professional Services Industry using RISE with SAP – Knowledge as a service

Professional Services industries are driving profitable growth while being responsive to customer and employee needs, owing to the rapid evolution of technologies such as robotic process automation, machine learning, artificial intelligence and predictive analytics. These businesses are focused on the strategic priorities outlined below in order to achieve their goals. 

This blog discusses industry-specific features for the Professional Services Industry offered by RISE with SAP’s Business Transformation Service. Let us begin by defining strategic priorities and their benefits for the Professional Services Industry! 

Strategic Priorities for Professional Service Industries

These industries have set the following strategic priorities to transform their businesses into intelligent enterprise and helps them to prepare in meeting the expectations of tomorrow’s consumers. Now let’s have a look at those strategic priorities.  

  • Outcome-Based Engagements 
  • Talent Networks  
  • Knowledge as a Service 

Intelligent technologies embedded with the RISE with SAP framework plays a critical role in enabling professional services industries to become a digitally transformed enterprise. Adapting to this enables your organization to redesign entire business models, processes, and products by driving enterprise digitalization through product development. 

Knowledge as a Service

Professional service firms are recently recognizing the value of their expertise in many ways other than the traditional face-to-face engagement model. Previously, customers could only obtain intellectual property through formal agreements and it was a key point of differentiation. On the other hand, forward-thinking service firms are continuing to productize their service tag lines such as building knowledge “vaults,” and monetizing their institutional expertise – a model that has proven to deliver best revenue streams during pandemic.

To better understand this, let’s consider there are two businesses namely:

  1. Company A uses a non-SAP ERP system
  2. Company B uses an SAP-ERP system

As Company A’s entire business structure is governed by a non-ERP system, these were the pain points faced by them:

  • Manual price quoting process for specific offers due to a lack of digital expertise or IP offering with no overall view of delivery and planned margin was a big issue.
  • Solution components were handled separately, so delivery challenges occurred due to a lack of a unified view of service delivery and forecast margins for combined offerings.
  • Subscription-based, usage-based and outcome-based business models are not supported.
  • Only a limited batch-based availability of different revenue recognition methods was there.
  • Several invoices for a single solution, with separate invoicing for different delivery channels was present.

As a result, insufficient integration of their traditional system resulted in a high involvement of manual processes.

Whereas Company B uses an SAP-ERP system, which enables them:

  • Improved user interface and configuration intelligence for quick and accurate quotes on complex solutions, including digital services from catalogues and offerings.
  • Only one order was billed for business solutions which include products, projects, services or subscriptions.
  • A centralised view of all related services, allowing for real-time visibility into revenue, margins, forecasts and outcome predictions. Intelligent resource management ensures that only the most appropriate resources are assigned to each request.
  • Support for traditional business models as well as subscription, usage and outcome-based models, such as discrete digital expertise and IP services were enabled.
  • Real-time and reconciliation-free support for various revenue recognition models, ranging from fixed-price to subscription- and usage-based models were available.
  • A single invoice for all services, projects, and products was maintained.
  • Intelligent, automated incoming cash matching powered by machine learning was helpful in budgeting and calculating the expenses.

Overall System B provides a single contract with multiple offerings, subscriptions and usage-based services. Real-time analysis to recognize revenue and support different recognition methods was possible by them.

Top Value Drivers

The major value drivers in the professional services industry post successful deployment of SAP S/4HANA are:

  • New revenue streams were generated.
  • Quote to order process was increased by 95%
  • Customer complaints about real-time orders, billing and invoicing were reduced by 46%

(Note: Data was taken from SAP’s statistics

Now you may be asking, “How can RISE with SAP helps us?”. Here are the primary business capabilities they offer to assist you in reaching your objectives:

  • Hassle-free creation of knowledge “vaults”, productize service lines and monetize institutional expertise.
  • Adapting to the infrastructure of the quote-to-cash process to include new capabilities required by new business models.

Conclusion

To summarise, SAP S/4HANA is one such solution that provides an intelligent and industry-specific benefits to the Professional Services industries via a digital core ERP system. It can help you gain competitive insights into your operations, increasing efficiency and agility while simplifying operations from procurement to manufacturing, order administration, distribution and transportation.    

Own your tomorrow with a guided journey and outcome-driven practices of RISE with SAP. To know more about the industry-specific solution, do get in touch with us! 

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