SAP has failed to listen to its customers for too long, according to its CEO, who has committed “heart and soul” to hearing what they have to say.
Bill McDermott offered his email address for unhappy users to contact him after using the company's annual conference in Orlando, SAP Sapphire Now, to admit it has not done a good enough job of addressing customer needs.
Speaking about a recent meeting with CIOs, McDermott said: “They told me basically we weren’t empathetic enough, we just weren’t listening, we weren’t hearing their problems in their terms on a consistent enough basis.”
He pledged to put things right starting at the conference, sharing roadmaps for key products and learning more about customers’ own IT journeys.
“We have to know more about your business, we have to care more about your business,” McDermott said. “Everything is an imperfect situation but if the heart and the soul is totally committed to the customer and the customer’s customer, you know we’ll get it right.”
The CEO concluded by giving out his email for dissatisfied customers to share their grievances with him, saying: “If you’re not feeling the love, and what happens in Sapphire doesn’t happen back at your city, your country, your location with your business, bill.mcdermott@SAP.com, I want to hear from you.”
Customers welcomed the belated admission, though organisations like the UK & Ireland SAP User Group have maintained for years that SAP must do more to work with customers.
Chairman Philip Adams told IT Pro: “It is encouraging to hear that SAP has acknowledged that it hasn’t listened well enough to its customers.
“We have said for a quite a while, that if customers are to fully realise the benefits of SAP’s product portfolio they need to understand the company’s roadmap and strategy. Without this clarity, it is difficult for organisations to build an attractive business case to adopt SAP’s latest innovations.”
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