7th SOLYP Key User Circle in Nuremberg: our Review

Friday, 21. December 2018

7th SOLYP Key User Circle in Nuremberg:
our Review

Getting together, reminiscing about the past year and gathering inspiration for the twelve months to come. SOLYP used the opportunity provided by the pre-Christmas time to invite their clients to Nuremberg to say thank you for the successful cooperation in 2018. On December, 5th and 6th, a totally new event format waited for the participants: Besides interesting presentations by customers about how they use the strategy software, this year, an interactive workshop provided food for thought on how organizations can design their strategic work in the future. 

New Workshop Format: Towards the Right Strategy With Agility and Efficiency

The central question of the workshop on the first day left deliberately a lot of room for interpretation: 

“How can we meet the requirements for business development in a VUCA world, when we DEVELOP and IMPLEMENT STRATEGIES?”

The participants chose the core topics of the workshop themselves: Following the “marketplace principle”, they presented their suggestions for topics spontaneously and actively promoted them. The objective: to find supporters of you own idea. After some vivid discussions, four topic areas especially important to the participants were set: culture and the human factor, gaining insights from data, tools for people and accelerating decision making processes. Afterwards, in the analytic phase, different groups reflected what already worked well in their areas and what didn’t – a particularly exciting exchange came up as participants from various organizations and industries described their differing impressions of the topics. 

The result was a common definition of four recommended actions organizations should consider when developing and implementing strategies in the future:

  • Culture and the Human Factor: The corporate culture is a part of the strategy and therefore needs to be incorporated in it, too. This also means that the achievements of anyone involved in the strategy process need to be appreciated and furthermore room for learning effects should be granted from mistakes. Lean decision making processes become more and more important in order to reduce bureaucracy and to be able to react agilely.
  • Gaining Insights from Data: In particular in the field of Big Data, it is extremely important to prepare and display data for specific target groups: Organizations should focus on clearly arranged, interactive and first of all customizable dashboards in order to grant for transparency and to be able to deduct clear strategic initiatives and recommended actions.
  • Tools for People: The most important requirements for next-generation strategy tools: flexibility and adaptability. This addresses standard interfaces to widespread systems as well as simplifying the system landscape in general.
  • Accelerating the Decision Making Processes: A clear overall concept will also play an important part in the strategy process of the future – within this vision, organizations need to leave margins for stakeholders. Short feedback cycles will assure them that strategic measures are checked regularly and, if necessary, are re-adjusted.

The participants agreed: It won’t be easy for organizations to implement those recommended actions. However, in the end of the workshop, the group realized that this is exactly what will be one of the most urgent and important requirements for business development in the near future. Even after the workshop, the conversations thrived about in how far these topics will be influencing future strategic work. 

Must-have in the Evening: the Nuremberg Christkindles Market

Of course, visiting the Christkindles Market was obligatory at the seventh SOLYP Key User Circle and couldn’t be missed: Over mulled wine and punch, the participants led intense conversations about strategy topics and gathered inspiration for their own strategic work – and of course, valuable tips for using and leveraging SOLYP3. Quite fitting in Christmas time, the revenues at the mulled wine stand went to social projects.

SOLYP@Sto: the Strategy Execution Center for Maximum Flexibility and Transparency

The second day of the SOLYP Key User Circle started off with exciting insights provided by Sto: The company specializing in thermal insulations for facades, older buildings and houses is conducting a consequent target- and measure-oriented strategic planning process throughout the whole organization and has been using SOLYP3 as a strategy software since 2012. In order to push even the strategy execution to a new level, SOLYP and Sto are engaging in a pilot project together: The Baden-Württemberg-based company is the first client to implement the new platform SOLYP 4.0. Combined with SOLYP3 it is supporting the whole of the value-added process of strategic management – starting with a strategic environmental analysis over creating detail strategies through to outlining a strategic program and steering the implementation in real time. 

Peter Dazer and Michael Doskocz, responsible for strategic planning and corporate development at Sto, presented the brand-new “Sto Execution Center” for the first time ever to the participants of the event. Its flexibility and transparency are convincing and it adds a lot of value: “What we liked most is the improved navigation, the modern look and feel and that it works independently from the device”, said Doskocz. “Thanks to user-specific authorization we can focus on the single user even more now – which is an unbeatable advantage to us since we want to use SOLYP 4.0 on a trans-sectoral basis”, Dazer added. “It’s our goal to make strategy directly feasible, be able to measure effects and enable long-term forecasting in order to further optimize the planning process.” 

SOLYP@TDK: Leveraging the Strategy Software Internationally

After that, Christoph Steinebrunner, Senior Manager Strategic Planning at TDK Electronics, described how the Tokio-based enterprise has optimezed its international planning process with the help of SOLYP3 for seven years: Worldwide, around 50 departments feed the system with financial KPIs as well as qualitative data in order to distribute relevant information to any strategy department through a central data base. 

“SOLYP3 meets the complexity of international strategic planning on various levels: We are able to consistently gather and evaluate internationally comparable data. We can also create PowerPoint files for a unified reporting automatically, and it can also be set up in different language versions and containing different currency units like Euro or Yen”, explained Steinebrunner. So the acceptance of SOLYP is very high throughout the enterprise: Its usability and easy options to assess and analyze data convinced the strategy departments around the world. Steinebrunner summed it up: “In general, you can say that we quickly identified the additional benefit as well as the potentials of the strategy platform. We intend to go on using SOLYP and to digitize further processes in the future – the cloud is a very exciting topic to us right now.”

We would like to thank all participants for the exceptionally enriching workshop, the inspiring discussions and the great feedback to the event! We were especially happy about the interesting presentations by our clients – thank you so much, Peter Dazer and Michael Doskocz from Sto and Christoph Steinebrunner from TDK! You demonstrated impressively how strategic planning and execution can be even more fun with SOLYP. We are already looking forward to the SOLYP3 Key User Circle in 2019!