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With Joule, SAP recently announced an AI assistant that uses natural language and is set to fundamentally change companies' business processes. According to its developers, Joule will be integrated into the entire SAP cloud portfolio and will then provide proactive and contextualized insights from SAP's extensive solutions as well as third-party sources. Joule should be able to quickly sift through data from different systems and then put it into context to gain smarter insights. This would enable users to complete their tasks faster. At the same time, efficiency is increased in a secure and compliant manner. According to SAP, Joule demonstrates the company's extensive experience in developing revolutionary technology that delivers tangible results.

Enormous potential

"Almost 300 million users in companies around the world regularly work with cloud solutions from SAP. Joule therefore has the potential to redefine the way companies do business and the way their employees work," says Christian Klein, CEO and member of the Executive Board of SAP SE. "Joule leverages SAP's unique ability to connect technology and business processes. The assistant builds on our concept for AI in business, which is relevant, reliable and responsible. Joule not only understands the user's instruction, but also the business context."

Extremely versatile

According to SAP, Joule will be integrated into various in-house applications - from human resources to finance, supply chain management, purchasing and customer experience - as well as into the SAP Business Technology Platform. This should open up completely new possibilities for SAP users. Employees can simply ask a question or formulate a problem to be solved by voice command. They then receive intelligent answers based on a wealth of business data from the entire SAP portfolio and third-party sources, while retaining the business context. For example, a manufacturer could use Joule to better understand its sales performance. Joule will also be able to identify underperforming regions or link to data sets that indicate a problem in the supply chain. It will also be possible to automatically connect to the supply chain system to offer appropriate solutions to the manufacturer. The plan is to provide new scenarios for all SAP solutions on an ongoing basis. For example, Joule could help the HR department to create unbiased job descriptions or formulate suitable questions for job interviews.

Guidelines for responsible use

"After the initial euphoria around generative AI, it's now about achieving a measurable return on investment," explained Phil Carter, Group Vice President for Worldwide Thought Leadership Research at analyst firm IDC. "SAP recognizes that generative AI will ultimately be an important part of our everyday lives and the world of work. It is now in the process of developing an assistant for companies that generates answers based on real-life scenarios. At the same time, SAP is laying down the necessary guidelines for the responsible use of generative AI."

Joule will be available with SAP SuccessFactors solutions and SAP Start from the end of 2023 and with SAP S/4HANA Cloud, Public Edition at the beginning of next year. This will be followed by SAP Customer Experience and SAP Ariba solutions together with the SAP Business Technology Platform. Numerous other areas of application within the SAP portfolio are already being planned.