Since SAP Solution Manager 7.1 was released over 2 years ago, SAP have been working on the delivery of mobile applications to cover the core functions of the tool. With the most recent release of the SAP Job Progress Monitor there is now a comprehensive set of useful mobile applications that will further aid in the user acceptance and adoption of ALM best practices.
Below we take a brief look at each of the applications to help you understand their real world value (click on each image to see a higher resolution screenshot).
SAP Business Process Analytics
If you’ve already configured Business Process and Interface Monitoring, you’ll already be aware that the metrics regarding Throughput and Backlog of business transactions are available for further analysis; allowing you to identify aspects of your business process that may not be behaving optimally or are in need of improvement. As an example, the screenshot opposite (click for more detail) displays the current number of Purchase Orders overdue, by Order type, Plant and Purchasing Organisation. We can see that the backlog is improving, a good indication that the business is now performing better.
Having the ability to view this information in real time on your mobile device is a very powerful tool. Imagine you’re visiting a manufacturing plant and want to discuss the number of Production Orders that are overdue; this information is now readily at hand. Trend information can also be shown to allow you to determine if transaction Throughput or Backlog is improving or getting worse.
The app also features functionality that allows you to take screenshots of the data, add annotations, highlight specific areas or crop specific charts and then send these via email to other concerned parties. Great for collaboration.
SAP IT Change Approval
A previous pain-point that our customers have expressed with the Change Request Management (ChaRM) process is that the nominated Change Approver can become a bottleneck in the process. It is incredibly frustrating for developers that have to wait to commence a change because they’re waiting for the approver to leave a meeting or return to the office if they’re on the road. SPS10 (Feature Pack 2) for Solution Manager goes a long way to address these issues through allowing approval delegation, but imagine if the Change Manager could approve the outstanding Request for Change (RfC) on their mobile device.
This is exactly the functionality that is now available in the SAP IT Change Approval mobile app. RfC’s can be assessed and approved (or rejected!) with ease. All the relevant documentation is available, from the long text description through to the associated attachments which can be opened and viewed on device. If further information is required, the contact details of the Change Requester are available and they can be emailed or called directly. Approval is simply a click away.
The app is limited to approval or rejection actions and reporting of current change statuses, but even in this form it is still a worthy addition to any Change Manager’s smartphone or tablet, and can also be used by other users to keep track of their changes whilst out of the office.
SAP IT Incident Management
Having the ability to create incidents or review status updates from a mobile device is perfect for those people that are constantly on the move from one location to the next.
All information pertaining to an existing incident is present so that you can keep up to date on progress without having to boot up your laptop or ring the helpdesk. If progress is stifled due to the requirement for further input then this can be added via the app, whether these be additional text updates or the upload of attachments.
This is one of the most functionally complete SAP Solution Manager mobile applications released to date; allowing you to create new incidents and both track and update existing records.
SAP Job Progress Monitor
Having real time access to the status of a series of executing background jobs (job chains) is a great feature for business process owners or IT support staff that are tasked with ensuring the completion of out-of-hours business processes.
This app provides real time visibility of your job chains in an excellent graphical display to allow clear differentiation between jobs that are scheduled, executing, or already complete. Statistics about the job execution are available, including start / end times and estimated completion times. Job failures and warning messages are also clearly visible and can be attached to email so that corrective actions can quickly be initiated via the responsible teams.
SAP System Monitoring
The System Monitoring app was one of the first to be released on mobile platforms and really showcases both the revised Monitoring capabilities of SAP Solution Manager and what can be achieved in a SAP mobile app from a graphical display perspective.
Covering the core areas that all system administrators are interested in: Availability, Performance, Configuration (technical) and Exceptions; the associated metrics and alerts are now readily available on your mobile device. The application supports the drill down from an overview to the details of single metrics and alerts allowing for analysis of problems to be performed whilst on the move.
Unfortunately, there is no change functionality (for example, you cannot change the threshold values associated with a given alert or who is to be alerted) but as a mechanism to quickly understand the health of the SAP estate this app performs very well.
SAP User Experience Monitor
Are you concerned about the performance of the response times of core transactions and processes, but unable to access your machine to see for yourself what is going on? This app is ideal; utilising the End user Experience Monitoring (EEM) functionality, the actual response times experienced at your end-user sites are now made available on your mobile device.
Each business process that is executing via EEM can be reported on (by robot or by script), using traffic light colours and different icons to visualise the status of the business process. For example, it is easy to differentiate at a glance between performance issues, connection problems and successful script executions. On those scripts that do have issues, drill down capabilities exist to determine the details of the alert; including the process step that is at fault, the threshold values that have been defined for each and the current execution times.
SAP Solution Manager Dashboards
Designed for the senior manager who requires overall visibility of the health and operation of the SAP estate; this application exposes the available SAP Solution Manager dashboards so that they are available on demand.
Sample dashboards include metrics relating to System Availability, System Performance and Incident Management. The tiles are easily rearranged and can be drilled into to show the information on a larger scale. Easily prepare presentations for service review boards, with the information immediately available anytime, anywhere.
Unlike lots of mobile business apps that are iOS only, Solution Manager apps are available for Android too, so, if you have the ability to connect your mobile device to your SAP system, download them today and take advantage of the impressive functionality. Next time a colleague stops you to ask about the status of a certain change or the performance of the SAP system you can pull out your phone or tablet and respond there and then!
Of course, the apps are only going to be useful if you have the associated back-end functionality in SAP Solution Manager configured and available, and this is where we can help. We can also advise on the technical requirements and components necessary to connect your mobile devices to SAP – both inside and outside of your corporate network. Review our Service and Contact pages if you’d like to arrange a specialist consultation to see how these anywhere, any-time tools can be deployed Faster · Smarter · Better.
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