SAP Run Better Tour: Business Analytics Overview

Dan Kearnan, senior director of marketing for business analytics, provided a overview of SAP’s business analytics in the short breakout sessions following the keynote. Their “run smarter” strategy is based on three pillars of knowing your business, deciding with confidence and acting boldly; his discussion of the “act boldly” part seemed to indicate that the round-tripping from data to events back to processes is more prevalent than I would have thought based on my previous observations.

We covered a lot of this material in the bloggers briefing a couple of weeks ago with Steve Lucas; he delved into the strategy for specific customers, that is, whether you’re starting with SAP ERP, SAP NetWeaver BW or non-SAP applications as input into your analytics.

He briefly addressed the events/process side of things – I think that they finally realized that when they bought Sybase, they picked up Aleri CEP with it – and their Event Insight solution is how they’re starting to deliver on this. They could do such a kick-ass demo using all of their own products here: data generated from SAP ERP, analyzed with BusinessObjects, events generated with Event Insight, and exception processes instantiated in NetWeaver BPM. NW BPM, however, seems to be completely absent from any of the discussions today.

He went through a number of the improvements in the new BI releases, including a common (and easier to use) user interface across all of the analytics products, and deep integration with the ERP and BW environments; there is a more detailed session this afternoon to drill into some of these.

I’m going to stick around to chat with a few people, but won’t be staying for the afternoon, so my coverage of the SAP Run Better Tour ends here. Watch the Twitter stream for information from others onsite today and at the RBT events in other cities in the days to come, although expect Twitter to crash spectacularly today at 1pm ET/10am PT when the iPad announcement starts.

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