The change of management at SAP comes at the right time

Christian Klein, Bill McDermott, Jennifer Morgan

Klein and Morgan replace McDermott at the head of the German software group.

(Photo: AP)

With his abrupt departure, SAP CEO Bill McDermott surprises the employees and customers. Until the very end, he has given the impression – both inside and out – that he is full of enthusiasm, for example in order to expand the business with the acquired market research specialist Qualtrics. In that sense, his decision caught the software maker cold.

Nevertheless, the change of leadership comes at a suitable time. At SAP, a new phase has dawned: after the billions of investments that the Dax Group has been preparing for cloud computing over the past few years and modernizing its product range, it is time for consolidation. But other staff is better suited.

SAP is well-known for software that companies can use to control their business processes. An important selling point is the integration: Companies should be able to see in real time, which products they have in stock, after the order should automatically go out the bill. At least theoretically.

However, the software manufacturer has done too little in recent years to integrate the purchased products and proprietary developments – despite all the promises to put the customer at the center. This failure is McDermott to blame: he designed the right vision for the age of cloud computing and won the customers and employees with his winning way, but he cared too little for detail.

The result: many IT executives and executives doubt SAP's role in digitization, complaining of the "cloud first" policy and grumbling about strict licensing conditions. Over the years the warning signs have become louder and louder. In the meantime, it's clear that the board may have heard it, but reacted too late and too little – despite all programs like "Customer First".

With his great vision, Bill McDermott has ensured that SAP remains relevant. But now the tedious craft is in demand. When the new leadership duo gets on well, it can be both. Christian Klein is responsible for the operative business and can now enforce the necessary measures at the highest level. Jennifer Morgan leads the cloud business, dominating the American-style appearance that is important in the software industry.

More: The American Jennifer Morgan is the new boss of SAP. Where she and her co-CEO Christian Klein are required at SAP, read here.

SAP (t) Jennifer Morgan (t) Christian Klen (t) Bill McDermott (t) Software (t) Cloud Computing (t) Information Management (t) Manager Executive (t) Corporate Governance (t) Product Policy (t) Management Board and Supervisory Board (t) Qualtrics (t) Dax (t) Bill McDermott (t) Jennifer Morgan (t) Christian Klein (t) Software industry


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