SAP gives retail software a boost

SAP has added workforce management capabilities to its mySAP Retail offering.

SAP has added workforce management capabilities to its mySAP Retail offering.

The product will feature an optimisation engine aimed at assisting stores with staff scheduling by balancing variables such as employee skills, payroll requirements, workplace rules and employee availability.

It will also handle such tasks as reporting and forecasting, and is tailored for multi-location use, SAP said.

Much of the new software's functionality is based on StaffWorks, a product SAP picked up in its 1999 acquisition of Campbell Software. StaffWorks now has an installed base of about 40 customers using it to run 20,000 licensed sites, according to SAP.

The software will have "quite a bit of the flavour" of StaffWorks, said SAP product manager Lisa Jura, but potential customers will not have a straight migration path: While some data can be transferred from StaffWorks, the new software will require a fresh implementation.

However, SAP plans to continue supporting and extending StaffWorks, and will release a new version of the software in March.

The workforce management tools will be available as part of mySAP Retail, an offering in SAP's mySAP portfolio of Internet-connected e-business software. MySAP Retail is intended to facilitate operations such as customer service, supply-chain management and sales support.

The software will also be available as a standalone offering and will be released later this year.

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