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SAP Fiori: Optimizing user experience

 
April 8, 2016

With SAP Fiori included in SAP S/4HANA, I believe that enhancing user experience (UX) is a big focus now for many SAP clients. In a recent blog, I shared five development best practices to consider before even getting started with SAP Fiori development in order to enhance UX:SAP Fiori: Optimizing user experience

1. Understand your users, especially current pain points

2. Agree on design before development starts

3. Have backend SAP process ready to go

4. Choose the right development tools

5. Mobility is the most important focus

These practices underlie much of the prep work and early stages where key foundational decisions and preparations are made. In this post, I will share four more best practices to consider after the work gets started to ensure that you make the most of SAP Fiori. These are based on my experiences working in our SAP Center of Excellence in Cincinnati supporting TCS clients of all industries.

  1. Follow the SAP Fiori design guidelines:An SAP Fiori implementation wins or loses based on consistency and simplicity of design. With SAP Fiori, less is more. SAP Fiori Design Guidelines is the palette that designers and developers work with to implement the principles of role-based, responsive, simple, coherent, and delightful. Part of TCS role is helping our customers customize SAP Fiori using the design guidelines to meet their needs and improve productivity.
  2. Get the data structure right:From the end-users perspective, SAP Fiori is all about what happens on the display in front of them. But for developers, getting that experience right–whether something is being displayed, validated or transacted–is just as much about the backend, where the business logic resides. Developers must focus on designing the best backend integration solution, so getting the data structure or the metadata right is very important, especially when involving new concepts such as card annotations based on metadata.
  3. Fetch the right information:One of the primary wins with SAP Fiori is providing a greatly enhanced mobile experience. Screen real estate on mobile devices is limited and performance must be snappy, so it is critical to address how much data is needed to display. Consider when to fetch the right information from the backend servers and avoid unnecessary calls.
  4. Performance is the key criteria for development:Enhancing performance at both the UI layer and at the backend is important. At the UI layer, the right validations must be coded in and unnecessary data not loaded in the screen. Asynchronous calls, which do not depend on a response, should be emphasized on the backend.Also at the backend, follow performance guidelines as needed, whether it is ABAP or SAP HANA.

As the value of optimal UX is increasingly recognized as critical for most businesses, I hope that you benefit from our experiences in planning and managing SAP Fiori for leading companies. I look forward to your comments and questions here and encourage you to set up a time to meet with our SAP experts and look for our speaking sessions during SAPPHIRE NOW 2016.

Pranay Nayyar is TCS' SAP User Experience (UX) Center of Excellence Lead for North America. He has over a decade of experience of working with global, cross-disciplinary teams of SAP technologists and business consultants and is specialized in UX and customer relationship management (CRM). Pranay leads work for clients across industries to define their SAP UX roadmap and implementation from inception to rollout and support.