In today’s fast-paced business environment, Enterprise Resource Planning, or ERP has become an integral component of the global marketplace. Enterprise resource planning is the unified management of business processes, often in real-time and partially automated by software and technology. It provides complete visibility into the core business by streamlining and automating processes, resulting in leaner, more accurate, and more efficient organizational management.
SAP, a world-renowned multifaceted ERP player has been dominating the business software domain for more than 40 years. It has become the go-to management software for businesses in many industries across the world. But, while there are scores of SAP companies out there today offering SAP support solutions to enterprises around the world, one company, in particular, has set itself apart.
With over a thousand SAP environments under management globally, Approyo exists to provide SAP-centric cloud solutions that help organizations with their IT needs across the global economy. What sets this organization apart is its ability to be a one-stop shop for all things SAP.
Christopher M. Carter, Chairman, and CEO shares, “Approyo provides full SAP service technology with extensive capabilities in hosting and managed services, upgrades, and migrations for our customers, running any SAP-supported core functionality.”
Launched in 2013, Approyo has been known to deliver powerful outcomes for its customers to meet the demands of today as well the future. With clients extending from NASA to London Stock Exchange, this provider supports businesses from production landscapes to migrations onto SAP S/4 HANA (High-performance ANalytic Appliance), and more.
Re-defining Enterprise Management
With almost 30 years of experience in the SAP industry, Chris founded Approyo to provide a full spectrum of SAP technology support, all under one roof. The Georgia Institute of Technology is where Chris found his love for technology. He wanted to create a company that would support other companies around the globe with their SAP journeys.
Soon after college, Chris started work at SAP, after which he went on to handle Sales and Marketing for the Milwaukee Rampage, a professional soccer team. He then held various executive positions in the SAP ecosystem, launching his first company in 2008, which was sold at a later stage.
A few years later, Chris was introduced to SAP HANA, a cloud-based database enabling Chris to create one of the first virtualized and clouded SAP environments. “I wanted to grow an ecosystem that would allow customers to be able to build and sustain their environments as quickly as possible.” With SAP HANA, Chris’s vision has would come true because now he can help companies build entire SAP landscapes in minutes.
In December 2013, Carter founded Approyo to provide global leadership for SAP directives and leveraging efficiency and power of SAP technology altogether. Today the company’s portfolio of services extends from managing enterprise-level cloud data, to security and compliance upkeep, to intelligent monitoring of all business systems and processes.
A Resolute Technology Leader
As an organizational figurehead, Chris feels most proud of the team he assembled at Approyo. This diverse group of individuals from around the world has come together to create some of the most breakthrough avenues in SAP technology. He says, “I’ve said it all along – I cannot do everything myself. I need to have successful and intelligent people as a part of our ecosystem to drive the success of Approyo.”
Within the organization, a culture of openness and transparency is promoted. For Chris, it is all about having open channels with his staff, his stakeholders, and the customers to drive growth, both internally and externally. He shares, “Some of the things that we do for our culture is give individuals the freedom to be who they want to be and provide them with resources and oppurunities aimed at helping them grow.”
Another contributing factor to Approyo’s success in the market is a diligent focus on its customers. Chris feels many organizations tend to overcommit and give false promises to clients which leads to less-than-satisfactory results. Carter believes in working hat in hand with his clients, sharing the details, so they have a clear picture of what to expect right from the start. He shares, “My goal is to be helpful. I believe I have become successful by helping people and companies solve their problems, versus making me rich.”
To other professionals now in their journeys to becoming the leaders of tomorrow, Chris suggests, “Listen to your gut. If your gut says to do it, go after it, go ahead and change the world. Be aggressive! I have a tagline that I keep on my laptop. It’s called B hyper-aggressive, and by that, it means to go after it and attack the world.”
Staying Ahead of the Curve
Tackling challenges have always been a part of Chris’s professional life. One of his toughest life lessons was managing one of his companies through bankruptcy. This taught him how to be more flexible and never give up, even in the face of the most adverse challenges. “I think about it every day and I will never allow that to happen again,” he declares.
A big fan of the late Jack Welch, (former GE chairman, and CEO), Chris maintains close relationships with other industry leaders that inspire him, and some who don’t. The ones who don’t, remind Chris what NOT to do while handling teams, clients, and technologies.
A revered technology figurehead, Chris ensures that he is learning and growing every single day, as an individual and a leader. “I constantly read. I love listening to podcasts about new technologies and new approaches to solving problems. I enjoy going forth and having conversations with individuals who have new and different ideas. I like to learn about what we do and how we can help customers, learn about what other companies and their teams do. At companies around the globe,” he shares.
Due to his breakthrough contributions with SAP technology, Chris has been featured in Forbes, Inc. Entrepreneur, NY Times, and many TV and Radio programs. He is also recognized as a Top 100 business winner, 14-time ACQ winner, 2-time Inc500, and 3-time Inc5000 winner.
A Day in the Life
The leader of a worldwide organization, Chris starts his day around 5-6 o’clock “depending upon if I listen to my alarm clock or not,” he smiles. Then he conducts his daily meetings with teams in India, Europe, and the United States, organizing and arranging the various activities and objectives of the day.
A father of two girls, rescuer of dogs, and investor in collectible cars and motorcycles, Chris enjoys his time off work. “I like to take trips together with my family. It’s really fun for us to see new places, learn new things, and be a part of what other people are doing in this world,” he mentions.
A lover of fast cars and good music, Chris enjoys sponsoring upcoming race drivers and their teams. He is also the Executive Producer of the Radioblack band.
Going forward Chris and Approyo remain poised, innovating, and expanding. They continue their development and enhancement of AI-based tools that will enable better utilization of the SAP cloud network with enhanced security. Their latest tool called Overwatch, aims to help companies support and optimize their organization further.
As for Chris, he feels that there is a lot more to be accomplished. He hopes to leave a legacy as the first person to create the clouded A-SAP solution. “I want to help companies running SAP software, not just for the profit but to help them be strategic. To help them with where they want to go, and to be successful with their investment in SAP technology,” concludes Christopher Carter.