B2B Payments

Ariba Makeover Tackles SaaS Usability

When it comes to innovation in the B2B space, one of the greatest barriers to market penetration is the usability of software developed for a business. Ariba has built its business model on providing other businesses an easier way to procure goods and services, but with ease-of-use in mind, the company revealed an overhaul of its user interface.

According to reports, SAP-owned Ariba unveiled the new interface at its Ariba LIVE event, held in Las Vegas. The changes, Ariba said, are anything but minimal.

“This is a generational change, not a tweak,” said the company’s chief product officer Sanish Mondkar. “There is a functional paradigm shift in user expectations. It’s way more than just aesthetics and design.”

Among the company’s top priorities in the redesign was the ability for employees to use the Ariba Network tools on the go, meaning that the technology must be compatible with mobile devices. This is especially crucial for Ariba Mobile, which saw additional upgrades to boost interactivity between users and data. It’s all about the User Experience, which Mondkar said must be “more modern, productive, and of course has to follow good design principles,” in a recent interview with SearchSAP.

The very nature of a mobile device, Mondkar told reporters, allows for greater innovation of programs. For example, Ariba Mobile now offers users to “pin” documents, a concept that allows users to flag certain items through the program and return to it from their desktops at a more convenient time.

Other updates include a modified search tool that covers all modules (as opposed to one at a time) and a redesigned desktop user interface with a tile-based layout and new widgets.

According to reports, Ariba’s new interface designs are based on SAP’s Fiori, which is part of SAP’s efforts to streamline the look of its subsidiaries, which also include travel and expense management tool Concur.

Ease-of-use for B2B software is becoming a growing focus for many SaaS providers. A recent survey published earlier this month revealed that for travel and expense management software, for example, simplicity of use is now more important for employees than cost savings or compliance.

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