How to tell your own Big Data story with SAP Lumira
Matt Potts
By Matt Potts

Advances in database technology have made it more affordable and easier to gain insights from Big Data. Today, self-service data visualisation tools empower end-users by providing a quick and simple route to powerful insights.

In this blog we will see how Lumira, a new lightweight visualisation tool from SAP, goes one step further. By letting end-users put narrative and commentary around their data insights, Lumira is now closing the gap between self-service insights and audience understanding.


Why Lumira?

With a saturated analytics market, and given the maturity of SAP BusinessObjects’s own offering, do organisations need yet another reporting tool to supplement their existing BI stack? What can Lumira do that the other tools can’t? And what is Lumira best at?

On the face of it, it is hard to see why SAP have introduced Lumira. The SAP BusinessObjects BI suite now offers much more choice and capability with its reporting suite than ever before. With BusinessObjects 4.1, reports can plug-in to over 140 data sources, ranging from a local CSV file right the way through to big-data applications like SAP HANA and Oracle’s Exadata.

But to make self-service BI a reality for business-users, reporting tools need to be extremely simple and easy-to-use. Up until now the reporting tools have been extremely capable but there has arguably been a gap for a lightweight, simple reporting tool to empower business-users. It is this gap that Lumira fills.

If Lumira can source it, a business-user can visualise it

Lumira’s has three key strengths: a simple user interface, aimed at making data exploration as easy as possible for end-users, a rich set of visualisations, aimed at empowering business-users to gain actionable insight from the data, and rich connectivity options letting users connect to enterprise data, their own (local) data, or even some combination of the two. In practice, this results in an interface that enables faster insights into probing business questions such as: “Why did sales drop last quarter?”, or, “Where should we focus our efforts on headcount reduction?”.

Now, with the latest version, SAP Lumira lets you tell a data story via a new storyboarding feature. This lets you bring data to life with annotations and commentary and gives an easy way for end-users to create a narrative around the data to ensure that the key conclusions of their data analysis are not lost in translation. In the following video you can see a demonstration of this functionality.

So what does this all mean for BusinessObjects customers? Lumira is an ideal too to give to an existing community of self-service BI users who are already familiar with BusinessObjects. It can supplement their arsenal and allow quicker, richer insights. More than this, it is an ideal tool to start business analysts and IT literate managers on their self-service BI journey. Lumira is an ideal tool for those who want to tell their own big data story.


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Matt Potts
By Matt Potts

Matt Potts is Solution Principal for Business Insights, specialising in Business Intelligence and Analytics. Matt has worked in the BI domain for over 8 years, helping organisations turn their data into actionable business insights through the use of agile BI platforms and delivery models. He is involved with multiple clients across varying lines of business and industries, working with them to ensure they realise the value from their investment in BI technologies. Outside of work Matt enjoys running, cycling and watching a range of sports and is kept busy by DIY projects at home.

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