Sam Bayer


Can you guess?

Thirty Five (35).  Yes, you read that right.  Thirty Five!

I just found this Cap Gemini case study by Philip Bretherton that does a great job describing what I think is a pretty typical SAP® Integrated B2B Digital Commerce project.  Many of our clients look exactly like the one he describes.  A Biotech company with ~$1B in turnover, multinational, multiple factories, many subsidiaries with 80% of their orders coming in via phone, fax and email.

However, from a project staffing standpoint, that’s where our similarities end!

In poetic fashion, Philip saves the financial punchline of his hybris project for the very last slide of his presentation.  It took 35 consultants, over an unspecified period of time, to realize the project goals of:

  • providing an enhanced purchasing experience
  • reducing customer service effort
  • improving the merchandising of products, and
  • gaining customer insights

We typically staff our projects with one (1)…yes ONE…consultant and deliver the same results in less than 90 days that it took Cap Gemini 35 consultants to deliver.  (To be fair, we are never the primary contractor for the product catalog.  We’ve always left that as an exercise for our Magento, and soon to be hybris, partners.  However, Version 1.0 catalogs are usually designed and constructed by less than 2 people within our 90 day window.)

What were those 35 consultants doing?  According to Philip:

  • 5 Project Managers – (Of course they had 5 managers.  Thirty workers need adult supervision.  Especially junior ones.)
  • 5 UX Designers – (Seriously?  What are they designing?  In the Magento world you can get world class templates for <$200.  The good news is that with our service the shopping cart and checkout process are pre-designed.  Just pick your colors and your good to go…thank you very much!)
  • 15 hybris consultants(I guess there really isn’t much that comes out of the box with the core hybris solution, is there?)
  • 4 Business Experts – (How can a vendor be in a position to supply a client with experts on their business?  We prefer leveraging the expertise of our clients and we don’t charge them for it.)
  • 4 Integration Architects(Within 24 hours we can integrate SAP® to be hybris’ real time Order Management solution.  I’m not sure what those 4 Integration Architects would do for the rest of the project. :-).  Actually, I do know.  Getting all of that marketing content into the catalog is a really dirty job and someone has to do it.  I hope that’s what they’re doing, because I know that with the Corevist solution they don’t have to map Customer Info, Pricing, Inventory, Orders, Deliveries, Invoices, Payments, etc.)

Truth be known, I want to meet Philip.  After this blog gets posted I’m going to reach out to him.  I think he did a great job managing the project.  I really do.

I love his Agile approach to getting the first version of the application up and running within two weeks and then running a workshop to uncover the “gaps between the out-of-the-box features and must-have requirements.”  We call that our “threaten to put it into production” methodology.  (I’ll bet a month’s paycheck that his first prototype wasn’t connected to SAP®!  We don’t run our first workshops unless we are.) I also love his approach to the remainder of the project being geared towards “extending the Accelerator features without breaking the data model”.

By the way, just as an aside, what exactly is the “hybris Accelerator” accelerating if it requires 35 people to implement the gaps required to go into production?

In the end, I have no doubt that Philip’s project was a success.  His client got what they wanted, and agreed to pay for, when they launched their SAP® Integrated B2B website.  Cap Gemini got to feed 35 consultants for what was probably a year or so. They’ll even be invited back for the coming years to continue to support and evolve their website.  $$$$$$$.

But this model is not scalable.

I meet SAP® based manufacturers every day who are turned away by their SAP® hybris salesperson for the same reason that I would be kicked out of my local Rolls Royce dealership…if you have to ask how much it costs, you can’t afford it.

We at Corevist are on a mission to democratize B2B eCommerce in the SAP® marketplace.  Thirty five people to launch a website is unconscionable!

We love hybris and we love SAP®.

We know that both platforms can be brought together in a much simpler and affordable manner thereby making a world class solution more accessible to the masses.

You’ll excuse me now.  I need to go speak with Philip.