The manufacturing industry is changing rapidly. Keeping up with developments is not always easy, as it requires a certain degree of digital flexibility. Is it a problem? Not with the SAP Business Technology Platform. This Swiss army knife offers a wide range of tools that enable manufacturing companies to boost their digital transformation. This blog post explains how.

The manufacturing industry is changing.

Several major trends are increasingly affecting manufacturing companies.

First of all, customers are changing. They now expect products that meet their exact needs. They also want their products to be very affordable and delivered in a highly personal way. You need to offer customisation, give your customers an unbeatable experience and introduce new checkout models.

At the same time, everything and everyone is going digital. Digital is the new standard. This calls for new ways with which your customers can interact with you. It may also require new ways for consumers to interact with you and your products. Manufacturing companies want to give their customers more and more real-time insight into elements such as order status, delivery time, invoice status and sustainability.

And as if these trends weren’t enough on their own, the manufacturing industry is going through several other developments. For example, manufacturing companies are finding it increasingly challenging to find qualified personnel. The coronavirus pandemic and subsequent conflict in Eastern Europe have also shown how unstable and unreliable some of our supply chains were.

Responding to change requires a flexible system.

With margins shrinking and complexity continuing to grow, manufacturing companies are expected to deliver affordable, personalised solutions that are best sold as a service and are combined with an unbeatable customer experience.

Dealing with all these developments requires a proper digital transformation for most manufacturing companies. That is because rigid, inflexible systems generally don’t allow for smooth innovations or efficient change responses.

Manufacturing companies that opt for SAP are now more likely than ever before to successfully tackle such a transformation. The secret? The SAP Business Technology Platform (BTP). SAP BTP offers these companies a comprehensive digital toolbox that makes their lives much easier.

What is SAP BTP?

The best way to describe the SAP Business Technology Platform is that it creates a shell around your systems and applications. The digital BTP shell is like a Swiss army knife: a smart toolbox packed with instruments that help you achieve even more with your systems. You can bring every innovation you can think of to life with SAP BTP. What is so great about it is that you don’t need to make any changes to your ERP system, which is your organisation’s digital core.

SAP BTP makes it easier to create personalised experiences that work seamlessly with your existing SAP environment. It’s easier than ever to build new solutions that help you to keep pace with the rapidly changing world around you. And you can build a secure, reliable enterprise-grade system at the same time. All in all, BTP helps manufacturing companies achieve three major things that are indispensable for virtually every conceivable innovation.

Set up complex integrations between your systems and virtually any other solution

SAP BTP includes thousands of ready-made integrations and connectors as standard. This makes the close integration of your entire system landscape easy to manage. And if you want to integrate a system for which no standard link is available? It is easy to develop an integration process of this kind in SAP BTP. This has made innovation much easier – without increasing the complexity of your landscape.

Expand your system landscape with innovative apps and extensions

Your ERP system is the digital core of your organisation. It does not include the apps and systems that make your organisation truly innovative and distinctive. These systems of innovation retrieve data from your ERP system. They interact with the processes that take place there. They use data from the system and may also add data, but they are not part of it.  You develop these applications with tools such as SAP Build, a low-code app development platform.

Unlock the value of data in many different ways. SAP BTP converts your data into analyses that add real value

BTP can combine all kinds of data flows from SAP and other sources. The business context of all the data you combine is retained: all metadata is included. In other words, a number in BTP is never just a number. BTP knows where the number came from, when it originated and what route it has taken. You get to use data that is so much richer, allowing you to achieve far more advanced insights, plans, forecasts and scenarios without excessive effort.

Would you like to find out more about what SAP BTP can do for your organisation?

Don’t hesitate to contact me. I’d love to show you the many ways this powerful Swiss army knife can benefit your manufacturing company.

Contact our expert Aart