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Paperless, Turbulent, Hybrid, but Successful

The year 2023 will be a successful one, but only for those who remain agile and hybrid. Radical concepts have had their day: "only" and "first" are relics of the past. The future appears to be hybrid, as we will be experiencing a generational paradigm shift until 2030.

One of the largest and most global-reaching internet companies invested a considerable sum of money into paper in Germany in recent years. That company is Google, and they financed a printed supplement in Manager Magazin several times, demonstrating what holistic communication for the C-level company can look like.

Information transfer, knowledge transfer, and education continue to operate in the birthplace of Gutenberg, the inventor of modern letterpress printing with movable metal type and the printing press. While a U.S. corporation in Germany is investing sustainably in paper as an offline medium, a U.S. publisher will withdraw completely from paper production at the beginning of 2023: The Munich-based publishing house IDG, International Data Group, founded in Massachusetts and known for its legendary German publication Computerwoche (Computer week) magazine. The magazine was once the bible of the German-language IT scene with the unforgettable editor-in-chief Dieter Eckbauer and his alter ego “Sebastian Trauerwein, Information Resources Manager”; however, it now plans to discontinue all paper-based products.

Is paperless an option? Perhaps. The fact is that tablets have not established themselves as magazine killers. The responsive design of modern websites appears to be better competition. In spite of this, our German E-3 printed magazine showed sustained success during the pandemic because paper was a relaxing alternative to Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

Even if the German-speaking User Association DSAG were to also halt its printed magazine production in the future, citing environmental consciousness as their reason, we at E3 traveled to the DSAG Annual Congress 2022 in Leipzig by train and not by plane! That is to say, there are other ways to be environmentally conscious.

The SAP community is experiencing a generational paradigm shift. This shift will take place over the coming years, and it will be turbulent, hybrid and, for some members of the SAP community, very successful. A text published on this subject by the research and advisory firm Gartner is worth noting. According to Gartner, in order to drive sustainable growth in turbulent and uncertain economic times, CIOs and IT leaders should leverage digital investments that deliver financial and performance results in an efficient and responsible manner. This is what Gartner calls IT for sustainable growth.

During opening remarks at this year’s Gartner IT Symposium, Gartner analysts said CIOs can leverage IT for sustainable growth by focusing on three strategies: revolutionizing work, responsible investment, and robust cybersecurity. CIOs and IT leaders should revolutionize work by technologically empowering the workforce to deliver sustainable performance.

All that remains is to add: do good things and talk about them. Gartner’s recommended steps should also be made known within the SAP community. The online e3zine platform is available for exactly this purpose.

E-3 Magazine December/January 2022-23 (German)

About the author

Peter M. Färbinger, Editor-in-Chief

Peter M. Färbinger is Editor-in-Chief and Publisher at E-3 Magazine, AG, Munich, Germany. He can be reached at

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