At today’s global keynote at the SAPPHIRE NOW Virtual Conference, SAP announced many enhancements to its Business Technology Platform (BTP). Some of them are especially focused on data / analysis. This includes the new Data Marketplace as part of the Data Warehouse Cloud (DWC). A new cloud-based operations staff planning platform. And a new corporate planning platform that supports the provision.
ZDNet was briefed by SAP Chief Technology Officer and Board Member Juergen Mueller to elaborate on the link between the new analytics-focused service and other recently announced initiatives.
Leave the decision to the market
Mueller described the DWC Data Marketplace as a platform that allows both partners and customers to become data providers. One of our partners, PwC, provides extensive HR data. These data, whether stand-alone or generated from SAP enterprise applications, can be used to enhance customer-specific datasets and analytics. Meanwhile, other stakeholders provide data related to SAP’s supply chain cloud. And these are just a few examples.
Make the best plans in the cloud
Corporate planning, on the other hand, has long been a professional and important niche in the BI world, usually focusing on budgeting, forecasting, and other rigorous financial activities. In 2007, SAP acquired independent planning and performance management software vendor Outlooksoft, eventually consolidating its platform into its own stack as SAP Business Planning and Consolidation (BPC). BPC is still fairly widespread today, but especially on-premises solutions.
While BPC remains fully supported, SAP encourages the implementation of new plans on cloud platforms and also provides guidance to help existing BPC customers move there. Mueller explained that the new cloud platform is under the same team and leadership as BPC, so customers need to find some consistency in their foundation.
SAP Analytics Cloud (SAC)’s new Operational Workforce Planning and Analytics is the company’s next attempt to move plans to the cloud while avoiding the mere lift-and-shift of BPC. The company describes it as “designed to support operational HR planning, analysis and insights for cost center owners and HR business partners to manage staffing plans.” It will be available in the third quarter.
Operational Workforce Planning is integrated by participating in integrated business planning (IBP) in the supply chain that has already been deployed. Other planning modules covering sales, geography, and marketing plans will be available soon. SAP’s enterprise planning foundation, built on top of SAC’s solutions that enhance BTP, underpins all such planning offerings.
SAP recently introduced a new API for SAC analytics designers. This allowed the programmatic generation of assets, including operational workforce planning assets, without the need for manual design as an exclusive authoring method. Conversely, the company enables the creation of SAP BTC solutions with a no-code / low-code approach, including workflow management / services and intelligent robotic process automation (RPA).
Wait a minute…
Other analytics-related announcements from SAP include an enhanced watchlist, an optimized story viewer, and SAC’s simplified navigation capabilities. Embedded analytics enabled by SAC and SAP Ariba Network. Support for file object store and SQL on Files features in SAP HANA Cloud data lakes. Data integration and federation capabilities for SAP HANA Cloud databases based on the same SAP Data Intelligence framework.
The continuous building of analytics capabilities made possible by SAP’s enterprise business software shows that data and analytics are inseparable from the success of today’s businesses. Integration further demonstrates that this practical approach to analytics serves not only strategic objectives, but also operational excellence.
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SAP reveals new data marketplace, business technology platform planning capabilities
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