SAP Leonardo Q&A with Jayne Landry

At the recent SAP Insider event in Amsterdam, I had the opportunity to catch up with Jayne Landry, talking about SAP Leonardo.

I tried to ask her the tricky questions, but she had great answers every time, so check out the video or the transcript below! 🙂

Timo: Hi my name is Timo Elliott and I’m an innovation evangelist with SAP. I’m here at the SAP insider event in Amsterdam in the Netherlands with Jane Landry — Jane please introduce yourself!

Hi everyone, I’m Jane Landry. I’m the global leader for business intelligence solutions at SAP and also now for SAP Leonardo.

Timo: So what is SAP Leonardo?

Jayne: Well, SAP Leonardo will be familiar to some people out there. We launched it originally as the brand for our IOT applications, but when working with customers, we found that many of these digital transformation projects need to go well beyond IoT to bring in new things like machine learning, advanced analytics, and other data sources.

In addition to things coming from sensors, we’re also looking at systems of record as well as data coming from systems, and conversations. And so we’ve broadened Leonardo to enable customers to really look at how they can do digital transformation and develop these digital innovation systems with us.

So has it just gone from being IoT to a broader bundle of technology?

Well it’s more than that!

It starts with the technologies and ensuring that customers can take advantage of these new and emerging technologies. But also bringing it together with a design thinking approach. When you’re working with a system of innovation or a strategic project like this, research has shown that Design Thinking can dramatically increase the success rates of these types of projects.

And so that combination together is really what we brought to market, to enable customers to go from ideation, to creating a working prototype, the technical blueprint, and a business case so they can really touch and feel and see the value of an end to end solution.

So there’s a lot of talk about digital transformation in the market now and there’s already some other companies with brand names like, say, Watson or Einstein… What does SAP bring to this approach with Leonardo?

Yeah I think one of the things that SAP is doing differently is: that we already had customers that were doing this with us; and the design thinking approach, which really enables a customer to quickly ideate and understand the use cases they’re trying to solve — and then bring the technology together in an integrated way. So that they can deliver a working prototype that people can touch and see and feel — and then be able to take that and quickly scale it up right across the organization.

So when I buy Leonardo, to make it concrete, what do I actually buy?

We’ve launched the new SAP industry accelerators, and they provide both the software and the services engagement to get a customer up and running quickly around a specific use case. We have ten accelerators today that cover industries like consumer products, retail, manufacturing — both high-tech as well as discreet manufacturing, sports and entertainment. And we also offer an open innovation path so if we don’t have a prebuilt accelerator, we can still take you through exploration and discovery, and an accelerated path to creating your own use case.

Who would actually buy this in an organization? Is the same people that buy S/4HANA or or is it IT or is it the business?

It’s really interesting because it’s all about innovation, and innovation in an organization can come from anywhere. So we’re seeing it coming from operations areas, and from different lines of business.

And I think that’s really important: that if people see an opportunity for innovation, they should raise their hands and speak up. Because you can’t expect someone else is going to drive this project in your organization.

The key to innovation is that if you’re on the ground and you see an opportunity, then bring a small team together, work on that use case, and iterate quickly. If you’re going to fail then fail quickly — but then get to a solution that’s really going to drive a competitive advantage for your organization.

So the lesson is that these technologies are going to change every company, and they’re going to impact any job that touches on technology today. So you should probably get ahead of it by making sure you understand what this is all about

Exactly — it’s an opportunity for you to rethink the way that you’re doing things and challenge the status quo.

We’re seeing with these digital innovation systems that often it starts with data that’s in a system of records today but if you can bring that together with data that’s coming from sensors, and data that’s coming for conversation, then you can really find new insights that will help you drive competitive advantage.

Now, this is a brand new product — that means it’s not ready for prime time, right? 🙂

Oh, it’s totally ready for prime time!

As I mentioned, we’ve been working with customers on this already, so many of the accelerators were built from those previous customer engagements.

We’ve identified the use case, put together the end-to-end technology, all fully integrated and delivered it to a customer. And now we’re looking at how we can make that repeatable.

There’s a great example of assisting customers in almost every industry, so we really encourage customers to take a look at those, and it’s a really great way to get started.

So the technologies and the methodologies have already been used, and they’re being used in real life in customers right now — so people don’t need to be afraid?

Exactly. And it’s not just the individual technology — the real power of Leonardo is when you use these technologies together to solve an end-to-end use case and we’ve done that.

So customers can move forward with confidence, and know that we can really take you down a rapid path, to go from that brainstorming idea to the blueprints, prototypes, and business case.

And one thing that I know people might assume will scare them off: what about the price?

That’s the other thing. We’ve sharpened our pencil and made sure that those accelerator packages are very affordable to get a customer started. They provide all the software you need as well as those design thinking services so you can go live in eight weeks — delivering something very tangible that shows the value to your organization.

And I guess the ROI is actually built into the product — in that the value the business case is part of the services, so after you’ve done the prototyping you know whether it’s going to be valuable for your company or not…

Exactly — you come out at the business case and an ROI so that you can take that forward and scale it up for your organization.

So it sounds like something that every SAP customer should be looking into — where do they go to get find more information?

You can go to, or contact your SAP account executive. The engagement starts with a one-day exploration workshop which we can help you identify that first use case that you might want to tackle.

Fantastic — thank you much for your time!

Thank you!