Step point on SAP Analytics Cloud at Karamba!
It’s been almost 3 years since our teams looked at SAP Analytics Cloud, which at the time was still called BusinessObjects Cloud at SAP. I wanted to write this post to summarize our activity around this cloud tool and give some concrete examples of use cases implemented during projects or during POC.
Looking back with some numbers
- For the past 3 years, we have trained about 20 consultants, or more than 40% of Karamba’s workforce! including 5 at Karamba! Switzerland.
- Some of these consultants have been assigned exclusively to SAP Analytics Cloud, and others remain versatile.
- Counting from 2018, we have carried out about 80 SAP Anaytics Cloud demonstrations to customers with different levels of interest (simple watch, or real project), including 12 in Switzerland
- Through these actions we have helped convince 18 French-Swiss clients to opt for SAP Analytics Cloud on BI or Planning projects.
- We participate or have participated in 13 projects – POC, including 2 projects in Switzerland
To prepare these figures, I went through the CRM and our agendas. I found that requests for demonstrations in France had increased sharply from the end of October 2018. This acceleration that we experienced at Karamba! follows two events, in my opinion:
- SAP’s delivery of major features in SAP Analytics Cloud during SAPPHIRE in June 2018.
- And more locally this follows the holding of the USF in October 2018 in Lyon (annual SAP customer lounge) where we were able to demonstrate on our stand and during a workshop the use of this tool in one of our customers. I refer you to the testimony already mentioned in the Karamba Blog!Blog post on REX SAC by Shiseido
In Switzerland, this increase was also felt from January 2019.
SAP Analytics Cloud Business Cases We Met
Today I wanted to list the few cases of uses (business case) that we met through these projects or POCs to illustrate that the tool can satisfy different functional or technical situations:
- In France, at Shiseido EMEA we have allowed Supply Chain performance indicators, present in BW, to be directly available to the general management on their iPhones.
- In France, at a global consumer goods player, we helped calculate in BW an Effect/Price/Volume mix for different product nomenclatures and built reports in SAP Analytics Cloud so that salespeople would have at their disposal during their negotiations with the mass market. Obviously the analyses are declined by brands, by product families, by packaging, articles, etc.
- In France, at a service retailer, we connected SAP Analytics Cloud to an SQL source (so not SAP) in order to provide daily dashboards to the 180 sales agencies for tracking their bookings, and to control their activity
- In France, in the industrial world, we have set up dashboards directly from BW for the Treasury department in order to highlight the most important cash invoices to be covered according to the cross-analysis of the concepts of accounting and management control. Combined with adjustments that can be entered directly into SAC by management controllers, the tool brings accounting vision (legal entity) and management control (BU, Project, Client, Cost Centre) closer together. Loading BW’s data allows us to offer a detail that goes as far as the invoice.
- In France, at one environmental player we are currently implementing their new budget construction application with SAP Analytics Cloud (HR, Capex, P-L, Treasury) to replace their old tool from another publisher.
- In France, with a transport operator, we accompany them in the production of tables to control their activity, costs per trip, BFR, etc. This data is derived from SAP ECC, SAP BW or SAP BPC.The interest of SAP Analytics Cloud in this example is to highlight the wealth and amount of data available in SAP systems.
- At a European player essential in advising and implementing SAP planning tools – in short, at Karamba! – we lead the follow-up of our business by customer, project and consultants via SAP Analytics Cloud linked to our ERP in SAP Business ByDesign cloud.
- In France, at a global player in services, a leader in its field, we participate in the construction in SAP Analytics Cloud of dashboards for the general management. This information is directly related to the consolidated data from SAP Financial Consolidation, a statutory consolidation tool.
- In Switzerland, at an energy player, we set up SAP Analytics Cloud to restore real-time financial and commercial reporting on their transactional data located in the SAP S/4HANA ERP.
- In Switzerland, at a trading player, we set up SAP Analytics Cloud for planning and their BI for their Finance in place of a process on Excel. This scenario is linked to transactional data via SAP S/4HANA and also recovers external data stored in SAP BW.
Not to mention the other 80 demonstrations we performed, 40% of which were tailored to the prospect context:
- Budget by projects, by research and development costs
- Construction of the Payroll Budget
- Simulation of organizational restructuring, reassignment of teams and re-billed costs
- Budget – Reforecast of solar farm costs – wind farms versus a standard cost matrix
- Simulation of promotions
- Purchasing budget
What can we learn from it?
In hindsight, so many demonstrations on SAP Analytics Cloud was possible because the tool has the following key points:
- it proved easy to model (once of course you mastered its philosophy, and you are familiar with software modeling)
- SAP Analytics Cloud makes it easy to connect to SAP sources (that’s the minimum) and just as easily to external sources, not SAP (SQL Server, Google Drive, etc.).
- SAP brings a very strong focus to evolve the product (having been myself at SAP in the past, I had never seen so many R ‘D resources mobilized on a single offer) This results in regular release deliveries (every quarter)
- a very attractive SAP Analytics Cloud tariff when compared with other tools on the market (yes, we’re talking about an SAP product…), and especially from the moment we understand that it brings together 3 tools in one (BI – Planning – Predictive Analysis). Let’s not forget that this avoids acquiring 3 different software, conducting 3 different projects, investing and maintaining 3 different hardware parks.
Of course SAP must continue to deliver versions that fill some points that are still missing. But I think SAP Analytics Cloud will take hold in the software landscape and will become unavoidable when it comes to making a comparison of BI, Planning or Predictive tools. Moreover SAP has decided to generalize the use of SAP Analytics Cloud to other tools in its range, by enrolling it natively in other SAP offers, for example in SAP SuccessFactors (In this case your rights of use remain conscripted to the software in which it is embedded).
Who is SAP Analytics Cloud for?
As I said, and despite a reputation still below its competitors, we believe that SAP Analytics Cloud will become unavoidable when customers need to study the acquisition of tools of business intelligence, budget development or predictive analysis.
A fortiori this will be essential for SAP customers (those who have the SAP ECC6 or SAP S/4HANA ERP), those who want to renew their SAP BI fleet (ex Business Objects) or those who want to renew their BUDGET tool SAP BPC or BW-IP.) It will be natural for these customers to consult SAP, mainly motivated by the criterion of integration: the fact that software communicates with each other thus reducing risks and increasing automation.
On the other hand, where it seems new, it is the share of non-SAP customers (especially customers without SAP ERP below) who should be seduced by the tool: ease of use, power, price.For we must recognize that one of the objections we often hear from these prospects is: “It sounds good SAP, but it’s not for us. We’re not the size of a CAC40 group!”
However, because of its pricing positioning, ease of use and lack of obligation to have SAP below, this opens up new opportunities for many companies of all sizes that have never opted for SAP in its IT. This allows them to acquire the same means as these famous CAC40 groups.
What do you think?
Anyway, I’ll try to give you a point in six to 12 months, how’s that okay?
It’s not going to be a