5 February 2003 Enterprise applications giant SAP has announced the general availability of ‘SAP Packaged Services’, a range of service, training and software bundles that customers can order online or over the telephone.
SAP offers its packaged services — which range in price between £5,000 and £50,000 — to existing customers in the UK &Ireland at a fixed price and with a 30-day delivery guarantee, regardless of the size of their SAP installation.
One of the most popular services to date has been the SAP Data Archiving packaged service, for which the company charges £45,000. For this set price, SAP consultants will install archiving software from third-party software vendors Ixos or Easy Software, provide training to the employees who will use the system and provide consultation on how the system might be extended.
The data archiving service was implemented at SAP’s first packaged services customer, safety equipment manufacturer Arco in just 10 days, reports Simon Keay, business development manager for packaged services at SAP UK. By contrast, Arco had planned – prior to signing up for SAP packaged services — to allocate two or three internal employees to work on the task for two months at considerably more expense.
SAP UK has so far signed up 20 customers for packaged services – although these companies have bought some 300 discrete packages, says Kate Meredith, head of customer support at SAP UK. The model is now being reviewed by the company for roll-out in other regions.
SAP currently offers 17 packaged services, but plans to roll out a further 85 during 2003. By the close of the year, packages services should account for “in excess of 10%” of total services revenues for SAP UK.
In the face of falling software licence sales, services revenues are increasingly important to SAP: in 2002, licence revenues fell by almost 2% in SAP’s Europe, Middle East and Africa operations, while services revenues rose by 12%.
Today’s public announcement comes more than a year after SAP first began offering packaged services to its customers – unusual for a company that is often accused of announcing new software products many months before they are available. When asked about the delay, Keay responded: “We wanted to be sure we had the right strategy.”