New mobile UX for sales cuts development time in half. Makes users on the go happy.
CHALLENGE: Promo materials meet important need…if they can be found
With an important mission to help patients across the globe who have serious blood disorders or immune diseases, Biotest supplies plasma protein products and biotherapeutic drugs across the globe. Products are primarily used in the therapeutic areas of clinical immunology, haematology and intensive care medicine.
From its headquarters in Dreieich, Germany, the distribution team of its global sales department is responsible for supporting sales representatives as they visit doctors and hospitals at meetings and events. These reps need timely access to promotional materials as they work to educate clinicians on the valuable role that Biotest’s different products can provide for patients.
And their existing ordering process for finding and ordering these items using SAP SD was clunky and time-consuming. Sales reps used to send an email to the marketing department, who would keep track of orders and inventory manually in spreadsheets. Users had to make their selection based on a 40-character description of the item and no image, a process that left sales teams ordering incorrect items or hoarding stock to fulfill the need later themselves.
To meet the demands of its growing customer base, the sales team needed a mobile solution with an intuitive user experience.
“An ideal option for our users would provide an image and clear description of the promotional item – whether a brochure, toy, presentation, or other giveaway – in an easily readable app that users could scroll through regardless of the screen size of their mobile device,” said Matthias König, SAP in-house consultant. “It should also need to be easy to update and maintain, with stock levels and order fulfillment status automatically kept up to date.”
A summary of order history and SAP SD offline capabilities was also necessary. And of course, Biotest needed a solution that was easy for developers to build and for IT to maintain.
APPROACH: Support for the complete application lifecycle
Biotest first defined what it needed in a mobile solution for its sales reps, who -by nature of their job- collectively don’t have a lot of interaction using SAP solutions. Their apps needed to be intuitive, convenient, easy to use and manage, and secure. Plus, they needed to work on mobile devices such as iPad, iPhone, as well as on web-based desktop browsers, and both on and offline – new SAP SD offline capabilities were wanted.
With support for the complete application lifecycle, easy installation, and a reasonable cost, Neptune Software proved to be an obvious choice for Biotest.
“What I like about Neptune Software is the clean structure on both the front- and back-end. All methods and attributes are bundled in a single ABAP class and are easy to find, making coding easy,” said König. “Plus, access to strong API documentation, as well as a large collection of samples and coding tips made creating new functions and processes for our users simple.”
“It was also easy to get started with Neptune. Within three days, I was able to create the initial pilot of our app,” König continued.
Once the pilot was perfected and approved by users, a small project team set out to identify the full set of required use patterns, while focusing on simplifying existing processes as a separate effort from the SAP business logic on the back end. And with no additional SAP infrastructure needed, development moved quickly, with the team using the Neptune Launchpad to create a unified UX for users.
From there, Biotest tested both the user interface and the SAP background processes using the waterfall method, working with colleagues to test the processes and making adjustments in quick, incremental loops to ensure that the app would meet users’ needs
RESULTS: Double the orders, half the development time
Today Biotest’s formerly complex business process for promotional goods and delivery are greatly simplified. The company has eliminated manual processes and users can order promotional goods from a catalog in a convenient, easy, and self-explanatory way. They love how easy it is to use, appreciate the intuitive menu navigation, and happily use the app anywhere.
Now that transactions are handled with ease on both mobile and web-based desktop apps, orders for promotional goods have doubled, thanks to new SAP SD offline capabilities.
At the same time, the IT team likes how easy it has been for developers to learn and implement, especially for ABAP developers who had previously had little mobile experience. “With Neptune, we were able to develop capabilities in half the time initially estimated, which was really great. And now that we’ve navigated the simple learning curve, we expect building additional apps will take even less time as we move forward.”
If you want to see Matthias Koenig, IT Consultant at Biotest talk about their SAP Mobility approach, have a look at his presentation during our Summit in Oslo.
To read our Case Study in German, please click here.
Customer Industry: Pharmaceutical
Geographic Reach: Subsidiaries in 11 countries servicing customers in more than 80 countries worldwide
Neptune Functionality Scope: Sales & Marketing
Number of Users: 50
SAP Version: SAP ERP 6.0, SAP Netweaver 7.4
Devices: Mobile, desktop, online & offline
Implementation Timeline: 3 days for initial pilot; 60 man-days days for implementation
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