SAP Cloud for Analytics: how the solution is shaping up
Matt Potts
By Matt Potts

Since writing a few weeks ago about SAP’s Project Orca announcement (which has subsequently been named officially as SAP Cloud for Analytics), we have seen further insight into the solution with the website going live and its unveiling at TechEd, Las Vegas. The product roadmap has also been released, so details are now becoming clearer.

Core solution focus: All analytics capabilities in one solution

SAP’s core Cloud for Analytics message has been around a single integrated solution for all analytical capabilities (Planning, Data Discovery, Data Visualisation and Predictive), which is a really compelling approach. The ability for both business intelligence (BI) as well as planning in the same solution really helps SAP to differentiate itself against other Cloud solutions in the market, which typically do one or the other. SAP is hitting that middle ground.

In my previous SAP Project Orca blog, I gave a view on some of the key capabilities that the solution must address. From the new product roadmap the initial release will give us the following:

What it needs to do    What the first release will enable
The ability to easily source data from a variety of systems Connect to SAP HANA, BW and S/4 HANA, BC, CSV/XLS and
The ability to perform agile data modelling The ability to take data from other SAP applications and merge it with other feed such as Excel will allow that separate area to mash up data.
Integrate models and data definitions from BW Looks like you’ll be able to connect to BEx queries and leverage all the investment and business logic (calculated/restricted key figures, variables and hierarchies) – this will be a real differentiator for BW customers evaluating other Cloud BI solutions
Social data feeds Not there yet but planned for future releases
Build engaging visualisations and dashboards quickly, easily and iteratively          The core workflow of connecting and preparing data and then building your own views looks great. The UI5 look gives it all a common looks and feel, along with consistency with other SAP Cloud applications
Blend off-system data with enterprise feeds It only looks like SAP enterprise feeds are there to begin with (unless you have HANA in which case you can then use Smart Data Access to connect to other database such as SQL Server, Oracle and Teradata)
Deliver a common experience on browser and mobile The solution will be available on all devices, which is now a critical requirement for any BI solution

Other first release capabilities of note from the roadmap are:

  • Automated data modelling (Optional data modelling, if you want the control)
  • The ability to be more collaborative - discussions on data cells and reports, along with the ability to assign tasks
  • Adapt pre-delivered dashboards
  • Use of geo maps and exploratory analytics

Longer-term the provision to embed Cloud for Analytics in other SAP or non-SAP applications is important if SAP wants to complete with other Cloud BI solutions.

If this is of interest join the event on the 8th March ...

Join us on the 8th March in Oxford for a half day seminar to learn how the new SAP Cloud for Analytics and Digital Boardroom solutions deliver true agility for business insights, letting you plan, discover, visualize and predict all your line of business data in one unified analytics platform.  

This event will be presented in collaboration with Christian Blumhoff, analytics thought leader and Senior Director in the Business Intelligence Centre of Excellence at SAP UK and will give you the chance to see first-hand both Cloud for Analytics and Digital Boardroom solutions live in action.  

Register here 

At this seminar you will:

  • Experience live solution demos of the platform
  • Learn more about where SAP Cloud for Analytics and the Digital Boardroom solutions sit in the market and on SAP’s Analytics roadmap
  • Learn how these solutions fit in with your analytics strategy and platforms including any current or planned investments in HANA
  • Have the opportunity to network with peers, SAP and the AgilityWorks team


How to manage shadow business intelligence through Bi-Modal BI

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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