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Four Things You Can Do Using SAP’s BI Reporting Tools

SAP’s reporting offerings have exploded in the recent past. Changes and enhancements to SAP HANA, SAP Lumira, SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio, and SAP BusinessObjects Web Intelligence have added significant functionality to SAP’s reporting toolbox. Here, we’ve compiled a few tips on what you can do with recent SAP offerings, from the BI experts who use them every day.

  • Monitor your system’s performance. Continuous, proactive monitoring of the status of production systems, its services, and the consumption of system resources is crucial to detecting problems early. This allows you to prevent or minimize service disruptions. Like all database management systems, there are key performance indicators (KPIs) that must be tracked as part of the routine maintenance. These KPIs are found in several areas inside SAP HANA. 
  • Use data virtualization to get a real-time snapshot. SAP HANA has the capacity for creating virtual views of datasets that can be populated at run time to minimize overall data duplication and complexity. Using SAP HANA’s calculation and analytic views functionality, data is virtualized, which provides the benefit of easy to conform to changing business requirements (such as industry or government regulations). Using virtualized views can eliminate the penalties involved with more permanent configuration structures, such as the added maintenance and administrative costs incurred by creating and maintaining these structures, as well as the data latency effects caused by waiting for non-virtual structures to physically load. 
  • Set up a Star Join. No, this isn’t a Star Wars term, nor does it have anything to do with astronomy. Star joins are a new option in the HANA modeling tool chest, and help overcome the constraints that limit options when modeling complex analytical views with measures from more than one table. A new graphical calculation view option offered in SAP HANA Support Package 7.0, called “Star Join,” allows for easy modeling of a star schema.
  • Build a dashboard based on your analytical needs. SAP offers two products, SAP BusinessObjects Dashboards (formerly Xcelsius) and SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio that have the capabilities to build dashboard-style content based on your corporate data and both are designed for an IT-based audience. Using these tools, you can display highly visualized information, track corporate key performance indicators (KPIs), display highly aggregated information with the option to drill down when needed, display the information on mobile devices, and interact with the dashboard in the form of filtering and navigating. 

Want more information like this? Be sure to check out our BI Anthology, Enhance Your BI Reporting Skills: Tips for Using SAP HANA, SAP Lumira, Design Studio, and Web Intelligence. Inside, you’ll find lots of hands-on tips and advice designed to help you meet your BI needs.

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