How To Mitigate Foreign Corrupt Practice Act (FCPA) Risk In A Global Business Landscape

Payton Burger

The term “bribery” often conjures up thoughts of large sums of money being used to sway powerful officials one way or another. But when it comes to the rules and regulations set forth by the Foreign Corrupt Practice Act (FCPA), the terms “bribery” and “government officials” apply to a wide spectrum of actions and personnel. How can organizations ensure that they are not unintentionally breaking any rules and putting their business at risk of an FCPA-related audit?

In today’s fast-paced world, having a global presence is essential to stay competitive, but that leaves you exposed to more regulatory risks and fraud opportunities. Below, we’ll review the processes, procedures, and tools you should have in place to help mitigate these risks and ensure compliance with FCPA guidelines.

Understanding the ambiguity

Anti-bribery provisions state that an organization cannot give “anything of value” to a foreign official to obtain or retain business in their market. While this seems straightforward, enforcement actions are often based on allegations around leisure activities such as travel, meals, gifts, and entertainment, all of which are typically legal and socially acceptable. However, what might appear to be innocent exchanges are viewed as bribery to the FCPA.

And if that is not vague enough, the definition of a “government official” goes beyond someone who works directly for the government, and includes employees of government departments or agencies, state-owned enterprises (SOES), healthcare providers, and even third-party consultants helping with the planning of a hospitality event.

So how can your organization navigate this ambiguity—especially as you grow and expand globally and domestically —and implement the right checks and balances to mitigate risk related to the FCPA?

5 steps for FCPA compliance

  1. Understand your business network. The first step in protecting against the inadvertent bribery of a government official is ensuring that the employees engaging in cross-border business dealings have a firm understanding of all points of contact they will be directly or indirectly working with. In turn, leaders need to take a step back and consider how the organization works with various points of contact during the business process so they can more easily identify situations that may put them at risk of an FCPA violation.
  1. Implement the appropriate controls. The knowledge and expertise of your organization’s finance and compliance teams is imperative to successfully mitigating FCPA risk. Configuring expense systems with the appropriate workflows, attendee and expense types, conditional and custom fields, and requiring manager approval before “anything of value” is purchased is key to catching potential FCPA violations before they occur. Having these types of checks and balances in place also creates an audit trail with documentation that proves that your organization is doing its due diligence to prevent instances of bribery.
  1. Maintain clear and correct records. The FCPA also has provisions around financial books, record-keeping, and internal controls that put even more pressure on your financial teams. When it comes to your financial books and records, you must maintain reasonable detail that accurately and fairly reflects transactions surrounding foreign officials. Anything that is falsely represented or misleading can lead to an enforcement action. In addition, internal controls must be in place, meaning that you must be able to provide reasonable assurance that the transactions are properly authorized, recorded, and accounted for.
  1. Implement a comprehensive audit process. While these provisions are broad, creating an internal system that includes effective oversight and reporting capabilities will help maintain FCPA compliance. Build an audit process that has rules to account for regulatory violations. Consider these approaches:

– Audit receipt types and itemizations

– Audit cash expenses

– Conduct random checks

– Identify location and type of expense and where

– Verify employment and look for patterns of behavior

– Use a third-party auditor to maintain credibility and help your finance teams scale

  1. Proactively educate around clear policies. While preventative measures and audits are essential, don’t underestimate the importance of proactive education. Ensure that your finance team is properly trained and has a firm understanding of what constitutes both bribery and foreign officials. In addition, build clear, easy-to-understand organization-wide policies around what is and is not permitted when it comes to working with foreign officials to ensure that everyone is on the same page and maintains compliance.

Knowledge is key

Maintaining FCPA compliance boils down to having the proper knowledge surrounding what the FCPA considers bribery to a foreign official, and building the appropriate policies to combat that. Ensuring that you have the right knowledge, systems, and tools in place gives your finance team, and organization, what they need to be successful in reducing FCPA risk.

Learn about how the Concur can help your company monitor for compliance with the FCPA and other anti-corruption legislation here.

Learn how organizations are gaining instant financial insights and using them to make better decisions—both now and in the future. Register now for 2017 Financial Excellence Forum, Oct. 10-11 in New York City.

Follow SAP Finance online: @SAPFinance (Twitter)  | LinkedIn | FacebookYouTube

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Payton Burger

About Payton Burger

Payton Burger is client marketing manager for SAP Concur.

GDPR Before And After May 25

Jerome Pugnet

In just two months, the “big deadline” for European Union General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance is going to fall unyieldingly on businesses in Europe and around the world. That means that many people are now in the home stretch to get their employer ready – as much as they possibly can.

This may seem a provocative way to put it, since usually one is either ready/compliant or one is unready/noncompliant. However, conversations with customers, partners, analysts, and experts reveal that a significant number of impacted organizations will be in a “partial stage of readiness” when the deadline arrives.

Some of these businesses say they hope to be able to show authorities that they’ve implemented adequate responses to the most significant requirements of the regulation. Others are hoping to show that they are at least making their best effort. However, they have no certainty that it will be sufficient for the authorities.

Will the authorities be lenient? What about the public?

The question of whether the authorities will be lenient appears to be highly speculative. And the sentiment seems to vary widely from one country to another.

Most recently, the breaking news around Facebook and Cambridge Analytica has put the issue of data protection even more under the spotlight. One can imagine that this will not encourage leniency from the authorities, especially towards large organizations or holders of large amounts of personal data. At minimum, it shows that the topic won’t recede after May 25 or be limited to European concerns.

One more thing is certain: showing care for personal data and taking positive action to protect it will increasingly become a central element in many organizations’ communication strategy. It has deep implications in terms of actual execution while scrutiny increases (and not just from authorities). The super-fast amplification of any failure can unforgivingly hit the strongest brands.

What is actually being done today within impacted organizations?

So what is being done today to reach the stage of confident GDPR execution, where personal data is effectively protected and continuously managed in a compliant fashion? And is it sufficient?

In most cases, it probably isn’t, no matter how close a company is to total compliance. Because for most companies the major focus is on meeting the deadline rather than on reworking (in-depth) the processes by which data is managed, protected, secured, and governed.

From what we see and hear, important organizational steps have generally been taken (like the nomination of data protection officers or data protection “correspondents” across organizational units). But the solutions implemented to support the effort are often short-term fixes.

A portrait of three struggles

When it comes to becoming GDPR-compliant, we see:

  • Companies that have relied (and will continue to rely for some time) on their favorite consultants. These consultants have developed a good understanding of the articles of the GDPR and tools to cover key requirements, such as the recording of processing activities (ROPA), data protection impact assessments (DPIAs), data subject consent management, etc.
  • Companies that are implementing a set of tools to address different requirements, but not in an integrated fashion.
  • Companies that are utilizing recently created, specialized solutions that claim full coverage of the various areas of GDPR. But given these solutions’ immaturity, it’s difficult to determine how effective, easy-to-use, scalable, and maintainable they will be.

The need for stronger, broader, and integrated solutions

Looking at these different situations, I wonder how many of these organizations have actually found sustainable solutions that will allow them to both:

  • Comply with reasonable efforts to meet the GDPR going forward and other data protection regulatory requirements along the way
  • Be fully in control and equipped to effectively manage and protect the ever-growing masses of personal data they handle

For companies today, compliance concerns aren’t limited to a worry about the fines that are hanging over their heads. In this digital age, the smallest breach can be amplified extremely fast and expose a company’s reputation.

It’s certainly worth continuing the conversation after May 25 by moving beyond short-term fixes and stopgap measures.

Establishing strong governance with best-of-breed technology

As we described in an earlier GDPR blog, the different activities involved to enable compliance with the GDPR and manage data privacy and protection should be brought together in a more coherent and integrated set around the “four pillars” (privacy governance, data management, data security, and consent management), with solutions that deliver the capabilities needed to support each of them.

Particularly important to orchestrating this set is establishing a strong data privacy and protection governance (first pillar). This pillar is the driver for the whole ensemble, and it calls for the use of best-of-breed GRC technology enabled by a high level of automation and integration with other business systems.

This involves:

  • Having in place and maintaining a robust, standardized control framework
  • Implementing and managing a comprehensive set of policies (with communication cycles and personnel enablement where needed)
  • Establishing processes for regular evaluation and monitoring of critical controls, with clearly defined accountability and issue management procedures
  • Reporting on a regular and ad hoc basis on control effectiveness and issues

This can also tie into the organization’s three lines of defense program, which allows it to take advantage of integrated audit management capabilities and help deliver increased assurance on the effectiveness of the GDPR program.

Bottom line

In the big rush to meet the May 25 GDPR deadline, many companies have been challenged to implement comprehensive, integrated solutions to meet the key requirements around data privacy governance, data security, data management, and consent management, while also equipping themselves with a durable, cost-effective technical base to manage data protection across their business. The longer-term need to develop a strong data privacy and protection program (to be fitter in an ever more digital business environment and to protect their brand and reputation) is another reason companies should leverage enterprise-wide, integrated solutions to support it.

Beyond the challenges we described, this can actually provide more opportunities to grow the business, as business partners have confidence that their data is protected and soundly managed.

It’s not too late for companies to review their options.

Learn more

This article originally appeared at SAP Analytics and is republished by permission.

Comments

Jerome Pugnet

About Jerome Pugnet

Jérôme Pugnet is a senior director of GRC Product Marketing at SAP SE, based in London, and has over 12 years of experience in risk and compliance management, business process control, IT governance, fraud and audit management domains, in particular in the financial services industry. He has over 16 years of previous experience on financial software and ERP, in implementation engagements and pre-sales advisory roles.

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

Comments

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

Comments

Julie Stoughton

About Julie Stoughton

Julie Stoughton is the Head of Telecommunications Marketing & Communications at SAP. She is a seasoned professional with 16 years of marketing and product marketing experience in software and media technologies. Julie's specialties include strategic market development, positioning and messaging, customer segmentation, product launches, ROI analysis, and go-to-market execution.

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

Comments

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

Comments

Jennifer Horowitz

About Jennifer Horowitz

Jennifer Horowitz is a journalist with over 15 years of experience working in the technology, financial, hospitality, real estate, healthcare, manufacturing, not for profit, and retail sectors. She specializes in the field of analytics, offering management consulting serving global clients from midsize to large-scale organizations. Within the field of analytics, she helps higher-level organizations define their metrics strategies, create concepts, define problems, conduct analysis, problem solve, and execute.

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

Comments

Phil King

About Phil King

Drawing from his 30 years of experience in IT and public sector organizations, Phil King is the Sales Director for the Public Sector in the UK and Ireland at SAP. He is passionate about working with the public sector to drive innovation that improves people’s lives and makes the world a better place.

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

Comments

Richard McLean

About Richard McLean

Richard McLean, regional CFO for SAP Asia Pacific Japan, oversees all key finance and administrative functions for field and regional headquarters, supporting more than 16,000 employees. He has more than 20 years of experience in senior finance roles with leading global companies across a range of industries, including financial services, investment banking, automotive, and IT. He joined SAP in 2008.

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

Comments

Catherine Lynch

About Catherine Lynch

Catherine Lynch is a Senior Director of Industry Cloud Marketing at SAP. She is a content marketing specialist with a particular focus on the professional services and media industries globally. Catherine has a wide international experience of working with enterprise application vendors in global roles, creating thought leadership and is a social media practitioner.

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

Comments

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

Comments

Paul Kurchina

About Paul Kurchina

Paul Kurchina is a community builder and evangelist with the Americas’ SAP Users Group (ASUG), responsible for developing a change management program for ASUG members.

Why the Cloud Helps to Overcome Security Concerns

Sven Denecken

security in the cloudsThe current heated discussion about security and cloud reminds me of an interesting recent survey on cloud computing from Saugatuck Research. Not much has changed when it comes to customers and the way the cloud is perceived. Security was and is top of mind for everyone.

Rightfully so, I agree with Saugatuck´s latest research.

Saugatuck believes that the reality of cloud IT is the reverse of popular thought

They believe that “the growing prevalence of cloud IT use, including communication and interaction throughout multiple ‘Internets of things,’ can deliver vastly improved security that reduces the risk of data loss and system breaches by improving the ability to secure, monitor, and manage devices and software.”

chart of top security concerns

Read the detailed research in last week’s Saugatuck Research Alert, they outlined how buyer concerns regarding Cloud have changed – and not changed – over the years.

I agree especially with the following conclusion:

As we noted in last week’s Research Alert (and in previous research published for our subscription clients), “the” great misconception about Cloud, especially public Cloud-based IT services, is that they are less secure than other IT provision alternatives. We find this perception widespread, and typically wrong. The data centers and networks built for Cloud platforms and service delivery tend to be architected with much greater reliability and security than most on-premises data centers, in part because the entire data center is architected and built with uniform technologies and implementations of those technologies.”

Security is top of mind for customers, ensuring that cloud computing vendors need to invest substantially and keep investing. As customer, you need a stable and viable partner when it comes to security.

Some of the key topics are outlined in one of my latest blogs, The 1-2-3 of Cloud Security at SAP

Cloud computing done right can help to overcome security concerns, especially as many customers realize that they are not able or willing to invest as much as a specialized vendor can. That on premise isn´t safer per se. And access to data, via mobile and/or the cloud, needs a clear strategy with IT departments in the lead.

What do you think? Post your comments below. You can also follow me on twitter @SDenecken to stay on top of latest and greatest about cloud computing.

This post originally appeared on the SCN Cloud Computing space and was republished with permission.

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Hack the CIO

By Thomas Saueressig, Timo Elliott, Sam Yen, and Bennett Voyles

For nerds, the weeks right before finals are a Cinderella moment. Suddenly they’re stars. Pocket protectors are fashionable; people find their jokes a whole lot funnier; Dungeons & Dragons sounds cool.

Many CIOs are enjoying this kind of moment now, as companies everywhere face the business equivalent of a final exam for a vital class they have managed to mostly avoid so far: digital transformation.

But as always, there is a limit to nerdy magic. No matter how helpful CIOs try to be, their classmates still won’t pass if they don’t learn the material. With IT increasingly central to every business—from the customer experience to the offering to the business model itself—we all need to start thinking like CIOs.

Pass the digital transformation exam, and you probably have a bright future ahead. A recent SAP-Oxford Economics study of 3,100 organizations in a variety of industries across 17 countries found that the companies that have taken the lead in digital transformation earn higher profits and revenues and have more competitive differentiation than their peers. They also expect 23% more revenue growth from their digital initiatives over the next two years—an estimate 2.5 to 4 times larger than the average company’s.

But the market is grading on a steep curve: this same SAP-Oxford study found that only 3% have completed some degree of digital transformation across their organization. Other surveys also suggest that most companies won’t be graduating anytime soon: in one recent survey of 450 heads of digital transformation for enterprises in the United States, United Kingdom, France, and Germany by technology company Couchbase, 90% agreed that most digital projects fail to meet expectations and deliver only incremental improvements. Worse: over half (54%) believe that organizations that don’t succeed with their transformation project will fail or be absorbed by a savvier competitor within four years.

Companies that are making the grade understand that unlike earlier technical advances, digital transformation doesn’t just support the business, it’s the future of the business. That’s why 60% of digital leading companies have entrusted the leadership of their transformation to their CIO, and that’s why experts say businesspeople must do more than have a vague understanding of the technology. They must also master a way of thinking and looking at business challenges that is unfamiliar to most people outside the IT department.

In other words, if you don’t think like a CIO yet, now is a very good time to learn.

However, given that you probably don’t have a spare 15 years to learn what your CIO knows, we asked the experts what makes CIO thinking distinctive. Here are the top eight mind hacks.

1. Think in Systems

A lot of businesspeople are used to seeing their organization as a series of loosely joined silos. But in the world of digital business, everything is part of a larger system.

CIOs have known for a long time that smart processes win. Whether they were installing enterprise resource planning systems or working with the business to imagine the customer’s journey, they always had to think in holistic ways that crossed traditional departmental, functional, and operational boundaries.

Unlike other business leaders, CIOs spend their careers looking across systems. Why did our supply chain go down? How can we support this new business initiative beyond a single department or function? Now supported by end-to-end process methodologies such as design thinking, good CIOs have developed a way of looking at the company that can lead to radical simplifications that can reduce cost and improve performance at the same time.

They are also used to thinking beyond temporal boundaries. “This idea that the power of technology doubles every two years means that as you’re planning ahead you can’t think in terms of a linear process, you have to think in terms of huge jumps,” says Jay Ferro, CIO of TransPerfect, a New York–based global translation firm.

No wonder the SAP-Oxford transformation study found that one of the values transformational leaders shared was a tendency to look beyond silos and view the digital transformation as a company-wide initiative.

This will come in handy because in digital transformation, not only do business processes evolve but the company’s entire value proposition changes, says Jeanne Ross, principal research scientist at the Center for Information Systems Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). “It either already has or it’s going to, because digital technologies make things possible that weren’t possible before,” she explains.

2. Work in Diverse Teams

When it comes to large projects, CIOs have always needed input from a diverse collection of businesspeople to be successful. The best have developed ways to convince and cajole reluctant participants to come to the table. They seek out technology enthusiasts in the business and those who are respected by their peers to help build passion and commitment among the halfhearted.

Digital transformation amps up the urgency for building diverse teams even further. “A small, focused group simply won’t have the same breadth of perspective as a team that includes a salesperson and a service person and a development person, as well as an IT person,” says Ross.

At Lenovo, the global technology giant, many of these cross-functional teams become so used to working together that it’s hard to tell where each member originally belonged: “You can’t tell who is business or IT; you can’t tell who is product, IT, or design,” says the company’s CIO, Arthur Hu.

One interesting corollary of this trend toward broader teamwork is that talent is a priority among digital leaders: they spend more on training their employees and partners than ordinary companies, as well as on hiring the people they need, according to the SAP-Oxford Economics survey. They’re also already being rewarded for their faith in their teams: 71% of leaders say that their successful digital transformation has made it easier for them to attract and retain talent, and 64% say that their employees are now more engaged than they were before the transformation.

3. Become a Consultant

Good CIOs have long needed to be internal consultants to the business. Ever since technology moved out of the glasshouse and onto employees’ desks, CIOs have not only needed a deep understanding of the goals of a given project but also to make sure that the project didn’t stray from those goals, even after the businesspeople who had ordered the project went back to their day jobs. “Businesspeople didn’t really need to get into the details of what IT was really doing,” recalls Ferro. “They just had a set of demands and said, ‘Hey, IT, go do that.’”

Now software has become so integral to the business that nobody can afford to walk away. Businesspeople must join the ranks of the IT consultants.

But that was then. Now software has become so integral to the business that nobody can afford to walk away. Businesspeople must join the ranks of the IT consultants. “If you’re building a house, you don’t just disappear for six months and come back and go, ‘Oh, it looks pretty good,’” says Ferro. “You’re on that work site constantly and all of a sudden you’re looking at something, going, ‘Well, that looked really good on the blueprint, not sure it makes sense in reality. Let’s move that over six feet.’ Or, ‘I don’t know if I like that anymore.’ It’s really not much different in application development or for IT or technical projects, where on paper it looked really good and three weeks in, in that second sprint, you’re going, ‘Oh, now that I look at it, that’s really stupid.’”

4. Learn Horizontal Leadership

CIOs have always needed the ability to educate and influence other leaders that they don’t directly control. For major IT projects to be successful, they need other leaders to contribute budget, time, and resources from multiple areas of the business.

It’s a kind of horizontal leadership that will become critical for businesspeople to acquire in digital transformation. “The leadership role becomes one much more of coaching others across the organization—encouraging people to be creative, making sure everybody knows how to use data well,” Ross says.

In this team-based environment, having all the answers becomes less important. “It used to be that the best business executives and leaders had the best answers. Today that is no longer the case,” observes Gary Cokins, a technology consultant who focuses on analytics-based performance management. “Increasingly, it’s the executives and leaders who ask the best questions. There is too much volatility and uncertainty for them to rely on their intuition or past experiences.”

Many experts expect this trend to continue as the confluence of automation and data keeps chipping away at the organizational pyramid. “Hierarchical, command-and-control leadership will become obsolete,” says Edward Hess, professor of business administration and Batten executive-in-residence at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. “Flatter, distributive leadership via teams will become the dominant structure.”

5. Understand Process Design

When business processes were simpler, IT could analyze the process and improve it without input from the business. But today many processes are triggered on the fly by the customer, making a seamless customer experience more difficult to build without the benefit of a larger, multifunctional team. In a highly digitalized organization like Amazon, which releases thousands of new software programs each year, IT can no longer do it all.

While businesspeople aren’t expected to start coding, their involvement in process design is crucial. One of the techniques that many organizations have adopted to help IT and businesspeople visualize business processes together is design thinking (for more on design thinking techniques, see “A Cult of Creation“).

Customers aren’t the only ones who benefit from better processes. Among the 100 companies the SAP-Oxford Economics researchers have identified as digital leaders, two-thirds say that they are making their employees’ lives easier by eliminating process roadblocks that interfere with their ability to do their jobs. Ninety percent of leaders surveyed expect to see value from these projects in the next two years alone.

6. Learn to Keep Learning

The ability to learn and keep learning has been a part of IT from the start. Since the first mainframes in the 1950s, technologists have understood that they need to keep reinventing themselves and their skills to adapt to the changes around them.

Now that’s starting to become part of other job descriptions too. Many companies are investing in teaching their employees new digital skills. One South American auto products company, for example, has created a custom-education institute that trained 20,000 employees and partner-employees in 2016. In addition to training current staff, many leading digital companies are also hiring new employees and creating new roles, such as a chief robotics officer, to support their digital transformation efforts.

Nicolas van Zeebroeck, professor of information systems and digital business innovation at the Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management at the Free University of Brussels, says that he expects the ability to learn quickly will remain crucial. “If I had to think of one critical skill,” he explains, “I would have to say it’s the ability to learn and keep learning—the ability to challenge the status quo and question what you take for granted.”

7. Fail Smarter

Traditionally, CIOs tended to be good at thinking through tests that would allow the company to experiment with new technology without risking the entire network.

This is another unfamiliar skill that smart managers are trying to pick up. “There’s a lot of trial and error in the best companies right now,” notes MIT’s Ross. But there’s a catch, she adds. “Most companies aren’t designed for trial and error—they’re trying to avoid an error,” she says.

To learn how to do it better, take your lead from IT, where many people have already learned to work in small, innovative teams that use agile development principles, advises Ross.

For example, business managers must learn how to think in terms of a minimum viable product: build a simple version of what you have in mind, test it, and if it works start building. You don’t build the whole thing at once anymore.… It’s really important to build things incrementally,” Ross says.

Flexibility and the ability to capitalize on accidental discoveries during experimentation are more important than having a concrete project plan, says Ross. At Spotify, the music service, and CarMax, the used-car retailer, change is driven not from the center but from small teams that have developed something new. “The thing you have to get comfortable with is not having the formalized plan that we would have traditionally relied on, because as soon as you insist on that, you limit your ability to keep learning,” Ross warns.

8. Understand the True Cost—and Speed—of Data

Gut instincts have never had much to do with being a CIO; now they should have less to do with being an ordinary manager as well, as data becomes more important.

As part of that calculation, businesspeople must have the ability to analyze the value of the data that they seek. “You’ll need to apply a pinch of knowledge salt to your data,” advises Solvay’s van Zeebroeck. “What really matters is the ability not just to tap into data but to see what is behind the data. Is it a fair representation? Is it impartial?”

Increasingly, businesspeople will need to do their analysis in real time, just as CIOs have always had to manage live systems and processes. Moving toward real-time reports and away from paper-based decisions increases accuracy and effectiveness—and leaves less time for long meetings and PowerPoint presentations (let us all rejoice).

Not Every CIO Is Ready

Of course, not all CIOs are ready for these changes. Just as high school has a lot of false positives—genius nerds who turn out to be merely nearsighted—so there are many CIOs who aren’t good role models for transformation.

Success as a CIO these days requires more than delivering near-perfect uptime, says Lenovo’s Hu. You need to be able to understand the business as well. Some CIOs simply don’t have all the business skills that are needed to succeed in the transformation. Others lack the internal clout: a 2016 KPMG study found that only 34% of CIOs report directly to the CEO.

This lack of a strategic perspective is holding back digital transformation at many organizations. They approach digital transformation as a cool, one-off project: we’re going to put this new mobile app in place and we’re done. But that’s not a systematic approach; it’s an island of innovation that doesn’t join up with the other islands of innovation. In the longer term, this kind of development creates more problems than it fixes.

Such organizations are not building in the capacity for change; they’re trying to get away with just doing it once rather than thinking about how they’re going to use digitalization as a means to constantly experiment and become a better company over the long term.

As a result, in some companies, the most interesting tech developments are happening despite IT, not because of it. “There’s an alarming digital divide within many companies. Marketers are developing nimble software to give customers an engaging, personalized experience, while IT departments remain focused on the legacy infrastructure. The front and back ends aren’t working together, resulting in appealing web sites and apps that don’t quite deliver,” writes George Colony, founder, chairman, and CEO of Forrester Research, in the MIT Sloan Management Review.

Thanks to cloud computing and easier development tools, many departments are developing on their own, without IT’s support. These days, anybody with a credit card can do it.

Traditionally, IT departments looked askance at these kinds of do-it-yourself shadow IT programs, but that’s changing. Ferro, for one, says that it’s better to look at those teams not as rogue groups but as people who are trying to help. “It’s less about ‘Hey, something’s escaped,’ and more about ‘No, we just actually grew our capacity and grew our ability to innovate,’” he explains.

“I don’t like the term ‘shadow IT,’” agrees Lenovo’s Hu. “I think it’s an artifact of a very traditional CIO team. If you think of it as shadow IT, you’re out of step with reality,” he says.

The reality today is that a company needs both a strong IT department and strong digital capacities outside its IT department. If the relationship is good, the CIO and IT become valuable allies in helping businesspeople add digital capabilities without disrupting or duplicating existing IT infrastructure.

If a company already has strong digital capacities, it should be able to move forward quickly, according to Ross. But many companies are still playing catch-up and aren’t even ready to begin transforming, as the SAP-Oxford Economics survey shows.

For enterprises where business and IT are unable to get their collective act together, Ross predicts that the next few years will be rough. “I think these companies ought to panic,” she says. D!


About the Authors

Thomas Saueressig is Chief Information Officer at SAP.

Timo Elliott is an Innovation Evangelist at SAP.

Sam Yen is Chief Design Officer at SAP and Managing Director of SAP Labs.

Bennett Voyles is a Berlin-based business writer.

Read more thought provoking articles in the latest issue of the Digitalist Magazine, Executive Quarterly.
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Cloud Computing: Separating Myth From Reality

Misa Rawlins and Krishnakant Dave

Across industries, many enterprise leaders believe and understand that cloud computing is here to stay. Globally, public cloud services market revenue is projected to reach US$411 billion by 2020, compared with $260 billion in 2017, according to research firm Gartner, Inc. Cloud technology in all its forms—software, platform, or infrastructure as a service—is rapidly becoming essential to the needs of business today. With cloud computing, organizations can simplify IT, save costs, scale rapidly, drive standardization and user adoption, and start getting ahead of tomorrow’s needs when it comes to customer engagement, the supply chain, the workforce, a simplified finance function, and more.

Despite the short- and long-term advantages, some executives remain uncertain about the next steps or have lingering questions about the benefits of moving to the cloud. For many leaders, separating the cloud myths from the facts can prove daunting. Start here, with these insights that can help you bust big myths about the cloud and start moving confidently toward a cloud-enabled transformation of your organization.

Myth No. 1: Moving to the cloud is too costly. “Costly” is a relative term. The cloud can be costly – but costs should be weighed against benefit and return once requirements and migration plans are in place. Rapidly evolving business demands, for example, can dramatically alter cloud-related requirements. Meanwhile, new technologies are dramatically redefining the art of the possible with the cloud. Because migrating to the cloud is not a true “plug-and-play” proposition, and many enterprise leaders underestimate what a migration or implementation involves, some organizations can be surprised by the costs of a cloud transformation. Without a clear understanding of the potential benefits—without a clear business case for moving to the cloud—the focus on costs can overshadow the return on investment. Knowing the value that cloud solutions can bring—not just the costs—can help manage expectations.

Myth No. 2: The benefits of the cloud aren’t substantial enough. As vendors adopt a “cloud-first” stance for many solutions and product updates, organizations that move to the cloud may have a competitive advantage—no matter the size of the enterprise. Cloud solutions continue to offer abundant and increasing functionality. And with the help of an end-to-end solution provider, you can configure cloud solutions to the specific needs of your industry and your business. For larger organizations, rapidly deployable cloud solutions can help support growth or the unique needs of certain business units, such as new acquisitions or foreign subsidiaries, for example. For smaller organizations, the cloud can help you position your organization to tap new opportunities and tame growth challenges.

Myth No. 3: Cloud is too risky. All digital technologies and all business models come with inherent risk. In a hyperconnected world, no system is immune from cyber attacks, insider threats, data leakage, or related risks. No transformation project is a guaranteed success. Market changes, new competition, regulatory issues, and other factors can require you to change your cloud strategy overnight.

Because the risks are real, take advantage of resources and capabilities that can help reduce risk and ensure that your technology investments align tightly with clear business objectives. The maturity of the software goes a long way toward mitigating risk with cloud projects. You can add an extra layer of capabilities such as managed cloud services to provide active, hands-on oversight of cloud applications and infrastructure—helping you to avoid service interruptions and address issues proactively.

Myth No. 4: Cloud computing is still an immature technology. Like other evolving technologies, cloud is advancing every day. Those who wait for the next generation of cloud offerings may find themselves missing out on tangible benefits as competitors leverage cloud technology to sharpen their edge. Across industries, leading organizations are not waiting. Many view cloud technology as evolving but necessary, and they are leveraging it effectively today. Some, for example, are tightly integrating cloud software solutions to streamline supply chain processes, boost information transparency, and improve decision-making across the board—all the while tapping the cloud benefits of cost savings and scalability. Others are confidently turning to infrastructure solutions delivered and running solutions in a private or hybrid cloud. Still others are turning to cloud platform solutions to extend the power of existing applications, build modern analytics platforms, or support new Internet of Things business models. Turning the cloud to your advantage may depend less on the maturity of the technology and more on the power of your imagination.

Myth No. 5: Moving to the cloud will be easy. Cloud technology can help organizations streamline and simplify their IT landscapes and their business processes, reducing needs around capital expenses and infrastructure while helping to save costs. But migrating to the cloud requires more than simply plugging in technology. It requires an ability to address a host of considerations—data migration, the business-specific capabilities of solutions, change management, governance, systems integration, security, and more.

A cloud transformation is more than a plug-and-play project or a traditional system implementation. It requires progressive thinking and an ability to align technology with your business needs and processes— for today and for the future. Migrating to the cloud is a journey. Moving forward with the cloud will require a vision of your “to be” state—your destination—as well as a strategy for getting you there.

To learn more, and to find out what IDC thinks about the future of the cloud, please read this study that presents a strategic blueprint for enterprises on their digital transformation journey.

For more information on how to simplify innovation with cloud technology, learn more about SAP Cloud Platform.

Ready to reimagine the potential of the cloud? Contact us to get the conversation started.

Contact Krishnakant Dave at kdave@deloitte.com and follow him on Twitter: @kkdave

Contact Misa Rawlins at mrawlins@deloitte.com and follow her on Twitter: @misa_rawlins

www.deloitte.com/SAP

SAP@deloitte.com

@DeloitteSAP

This article originally appeared on Deloitte.com and is republished by permission.

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Misa Rawlins

About Misa Rawlins

As a senior manager and consultant in Deloitte’s SAP practice, Misa Rawlins enjoys helping her clients not only to figure out how to solve their current business problems, but also to envision how a modern cloud platform can transform their organizations moving ahead. Within the practice, she has specifically chosen to take a leadership role around the sales and delivery of SAP S/4HANA Cloud because she considers it the wave of the future. She has made it her mission to deeply understand this technology to better advise clients on what moving to a cloud infrastructure really means.

Krishnakant Dave

About Krishnakant Dave

As a principal in Deloitte’s global SAP practice, KK Dave is a consulting leader for Deloitte’s largest clients; part of the U.S. SAP leadership team where he spearheads Deloitte's cloud offerings; and leader of global go-to-market efforts in the wholesale distribution and manufacturing sector. In these roles, he assists clients in their business transformation journeys using the absolute latest SAP toolset, which presently comprises SAP S/4HANA, SAP Cloud Platform, and SAP S/4HANA Cloud, among other technologies.