EY and SAP team up to tackle digital transformation

24 Jul 2019

Image: Connor McKenna/Silicon Republic

Data, AI, machine learning and IoT are drivers of digital transformation. But where do companies find a roadmap?

This month, a small event was held to mark the launch of an alliance between EY and SAP focused on digital transformation.

Speaking at the event, EY Ireland CIO Frank O’Dea said this was “one of the biggest alliances that EY has in the world” and SAP appeared to be a natural choice considering its use among EY clients.

“We see a lot of our clients using their technology. It’s pervasive and it’s really important in our clients’ businesses, and we help our clients get value out of that and really apply that technology to their businesses,” he explained.

The EY and SAP Talks event focused on unlocking digital transformation in finance and HR. As digital transformation evolves, businesses are starting out with AI and machine learning embedded in processes, and EY itself uses a number of chatbots every day in its HR business. With these technologies becoming mainstream, along with the rise of the internet of things, a lot of data is being gathered. For many EY clients, “SAP is the place where it all ends up,” according to O’Dea. “That is the main repository for their business data.”

Where to start?

SAP vice-president Timo Elliott, the company’s global innovation evangelist, noted that one of the biggest challenges with digital transformation is knowing where to start.

“We find that people are drowning in the different opportunities, what steps to take, what they should do first, and this is exactly where an organisation like EY working with SAP can help guide customers to make the right choices,” he said.

Looking ahead to the future of digital organisations, Elliott wants organisations to think long-term about their adaptability. “What’s absolutely essential is building in agility and new ways of working. So not just transforming but transforming our ability to transform in the future,” he said.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.