StreamWork, SAP's enterprise collaboration SaaS, is now available in the Google Apps Marketplace. The company also announced an enterprise edition of StreamWork and a mobile application for BlackBerry handsets. Although SAP is best known as an enterprise software, StreamWork has been focused on SMBs up until now.
Given StreamWork's focus on SMBs, and its need to be seen as cutting edge instead of a stale old school enterprise product, Google Apps integration makes a lot of sense. There are more than 30 million Google Apps users, and all of them will be able to use their Google Apps credentials to use StreamWork. Direct integration will be available in 2011. Google Apps integration compliments other partnerships, such as integration with services like Evernote and Box.net.
The enterprise edition is a virtual appliance hosted by SAP. It runs on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and was built with the SUSE Appliance Toolkit from Novell. The new version will bring additional security features to the product and finally make it enterprise-ready.
Releasing a mobile client for BlackBerry first breaks with the recent trend we've been seeing of enterprise vendors releasing for the iPhone first. But SAP does plan an iOS version in the future. The mobile application allows users to access StreamWorks information from their handhelds and download StreamWork items to their BlackBerry task list.
StreamWork is a "collaborative decision making" (CDM) product. This means its focus is on decision making instead of social for social's sake. StreamWork provides a structure to discussion making with pro/con tables, SWOT analyses, and polls and other tools.
According to Gartner's Rita Sallam:
CDM platforms capture the decision process, inputs and assumptions so that decision-makers can later analyze whether or not a decision was a good one - and why - and identify best practices. CDM solutions, including SAP StreamWork, include some social software capabilities but are complementary to social software platforms.
This seems like a good way to differentiate it from existing products in the crowded enterprise collaboration market, and Google Apps integration is a good way to drive adoption. SAP is recovering from a stinging loss in a legal battle with Oracle. Is this its come-back product?