Digitalized Service Orientation With BRIM
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Digitalized Service Orientation With BRIM

Traditional markets are changing drastically. Only selling products is not enough anymore; service providers with innovative, highly flexible business models are taking over. The biggest driver behind billing innovation is digitalization.

Jasmina Cejan, Principal Consultant at GTW Management Consulting, has already implemented SAP BRIM (formerly known as Hybris Billing) in countless customer projects. She explains, “Digital technologies pave the way for more service orientation, new digital possibilities and business opportunities. To make the most of it, companies need new billing models.”

The driver behind billing innovation is digital transformation, which concerns customers and providers alike. Digital technologies open up completely new opportunities and perspectives. This, in turn, results in new billing possibilities which enable customers to become more service oriented.

Digital change is not going to stop anytime soon. It’s drastically changing IT – but also consumer behavior. Traditional business models, successful for many decades, are abolished in the blink of an eye. New providers like Uber, Amazon, Netflix or Deliveryhero show the potential digital business models have.

Value chains are changing

Not only are business models changing because of digitalization, but also value chains. In everyday operations, data and information have become invaluable resources shaping the course of a company’s success. It is easier than ever for customers to obtain product information before purchasing something. The internet opens the door for comparisons between competitors and customer recommendations.

This new power that customers are wielding has contributed to an even more heated competition between providers. They are under enormous pressure to react to and satisfy customer wishes, usually pertaining to price and service (e.g. shipping costs or returns).

“Customers only accept higher prices if providers make up for them, for example through excellent customer service or easy and flexible billing,” says Jasmina Cejan. “Providers can also earn an edge over their competitors by offering individual, tailored offerings and billing.”

An example for new digital billing models is the sharing economy. Carsharing providers like Car2Go, e-bike and e-scooter rentals are the new norm in modern cities. The thought process behind the sharing economy: to guarantee the availability of a product at the exact moment it is needed, anytime and anywhere. Usually, these rentals are billed according to pay-per-use principle. Before, customers had to pay for the product; now, they are paying for the service.

“With SAP BRIM, the billing of digital services becomes easy and flexible – including subscriptions, leasing or pay-per-use contracts, non-recurring charges, usage and more,” explains Jasmina Cejan. “Regardless of whether the usage data is priced or unpriced, BRIM aggregates them into one invoice for customers.”

Billing and Revenue Innovation (BRIM)

With Billing and Revenue Innovation Management, SAP offers a functional and flexible software solution for pricing, billing and invoicing of various services and products in a consistent system landscape. The solution enables customers to quickly introduce new products or new product portfolios, create uniform invoices, carry out simulations, and manage payments and reminders.

Furthermore, BRIM offers mass data processing, real-time connection and implementation of prepaid and postpaid scenarios. Because of its configurability, modularity, integration with other SAP modules (e.g. SD, FI-AR, IS-U) and existing systems, the SAP solutions offers high flexibility.

The solution is generally defined by this flexibility and speed. BRIM is designed for mass processes with high transaction volumes and offers integration with existing systems. Through BRIM, companies of all industries are able to tackle the challenges of digital transformation and digitalize their own core business successfully.

Flexibility and other systems

BRIM supports the entire offer to cash process, including customer management, product configuration, service billing, invoicing, receivables management, and more. BRIM also seamlessly connects with existing systems for customer management and rating, supporting the entire Offer2Cash process in a hybrid landscape. Because of its modular architecture, the system’s components can be replaced easily.

The most important functionality of BRIM includes usage-based or recurring pricing models and determining prices in real time. Capable of postpaid and prepaid scenarios, BRIM is also able to realize partner profit-sharing models.

Customer centricity

BRIM focuses on customers and consumers. Companies can react to new wishes and needs efficiently, for example in creating various more and less complex service packages. Furthermore, they are able to quickly react to a fast-changing market environment. Customer behavior and personal preferences can be considered in pricing and invoicing decisions thanks to big data.

Another great benefit of BRIM is that users can create uniform, convergent invoices for services and products from one or more information channels and data sources. BRIM also supports the entire revenue management chain, including receivables management, different credit ratings, and debt collection.

Consequently, companies increase profitability as well as customer satisfaction and solidify their standing in the market.

SAP BRIM is easy to configure and can be adapted to companies’ specific needs. Thanks to the modular architecture and the seamless integration with other SAP components and existing systems, the solution offers high levels of flexibility. SAP Convergent Charging takes care of pricing while SAP Convergent Invoicing facilitates invoicing. Sales and Order Management (part of SAP CRM) as well as Customer Financial Management (FI-CA and CRM) complete the offer.

As agile universal solution, SAP BRIM is leveraged by companies and organizations in logistics, telecommunication, media, trade, manufacturing and utilities.

This is the second part of a series! If you would like to read the first one, click here. If you would like to read the next one, click here.

A Solution and its history

SAP BRIM has a long, proud history. Over the years, not only did the solution itself change significantly, but also its name. The core functionalities of today’s universal solution were long known as SAP Billing and Revenue Innovation Management (BRIM).

The traditional version used SD, MM or various industry solutions for billing to keep up with new technological challenges concerning data processing speed, higher data volumes and flexibility (configurable, modular, independent).

In 2013, Hybris joined the SAP family. Back then, Hybris was one of the leading e-commerce companies. In 2015, SAP BRIM, in turn, joined the Hybris family. SAP Hybris Billing focused more on customers, their wishes and experiences. The solution was simplified through Hybris’ portfolio, including Hybris Commerce, Hybris Cloud for Customer and Hybris Marketing, and was now ready for Hana. In 2016, its name was changed again: from Hybris software to SAP Hybris solutions.

In 2018, the solutions combined under SAP Hybris were now joined by new acquired solutions, earning yet another name: SAP C/4 Hana. The ‘C’ is for customer and the ‘4’ is for fourth-generation CRM. With SAP S/4 Hana in the backend and SAP C/4 Hana in the frontend, SAP is clearly focusing on streamlining customer management processes and making them more efficient. SAP Hybris Billing therefore needed a new (old) name: SAP Billing and Revenue Innovation Management (SAP BRIM).

The core components of modular BRIM are:

  • SAP Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
  • SAP Convergent Mediation by DigitalRoute
  • SAP Business Suite (ERP/ECC 6.0) or SAP S/4 Hana with ‘Contract Accounts Payable and Receivable’ (SAP FI-CA) including Convergent Invoicing (CI)
  • SAP Convergent Charging (CC)

E-3 Magazine December 2019/January 2020 (German)

About the author

Christoph Granig, GTW

Christoph Granig is Manager GTW Switzerland at GTW Management Consulting.

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