BusinessObjects and SAP Part 2
There seems to be huge interest in the BusinessObjects product suite. So, after the great feedback on my first blog I will try to complete my series on the BusinessObjects products in combination with SAP products more quickly.
In this blog I will focus on Crystal Reports in combination with SAP BW queries.
This screenshot shows the query I will use to demonstrate Crystal Reports.
The query is based on the SAP Demo Sales and Distribution Overview cube (0D_SD_C03).
In the rows I will request information for the Calendar Year / Month, the Customer (Sold-to-party) and the Material.
In the columns I will request the key figures Open Orders and Open Orders Qty.
BEx web reporting provides this result set:
Building a report with Crystal Reports based on this BW query is simple.
After the installation of the SAP Integration Kit there is a new toolbar in Crystal Reports. This toolbar is specifically designed for integration with SAP BW and allows you to use the typical role menus from the SAP BW system.
By using the SAP toolbar in Crystal Reports I can leverage the standard role menus and select the BW query for a new report.
After selecting the query, the requested information is available in the field explorer from Crystal Reports.
As shown in the image above, Crystal Reports received all the key figures and all the characteristics.
The following is a quick overview of how Crystal Reports treats elements from a BW query:
- Characteristics are being returned as separate fields with a key and description in the field explorer (for example: Material (SAP Demo) Key and medium name)
- Free characteristics are being treated in the same way as any other characteristic in Crystal Reports and can be used for reporting
- Key figures from the BW query are being returned with up to three fields representing the numeric value, the unit, and the formatted value based on the user preferences (transaction SU01).
- Display attributes are treated as separate fields in Crystal Reports but can be used independent of the characteristic itself (for example: Material Group (Key and Name) and Gross Weight)
- Variables from the underlying query are resulting in parameters in Crystal Reports (more in my next blog entry).
Now I can use all of these elements and have the complete functionality of Crystal Reports.
- In the first step I select the menu “Insert > Group” and create a group based on the Calendar Year / Month characteristic.
- I then add the Open Orders Value and Open Order Qty key figures to my report and select the context menu “Insert Summary” to create two new group summaries for my grouping based on the Calendar Year / Month.
- I then insert a chart showing the Order value for the year (menu Insert – Chart)
- I then create an additional grouping (menu Insert > Group) based on the Customer and select the menu Report > Group Sort Expert to use a Top 10 condition.
This creates a report showing me the Order Value and Order Qty for each month and it allows me to drill down on each month to see the Top 10 customers for the selected entry.
Here the start of my report:
And the view after a drill down on March:
All screens are taken from the Crystal Reports Designer tool. The user can also view all the reports via the BusinessObjects Enterprise platform in a web client and still use the same navigation functionality.
This was just a short introduction showing how Crystal Reports can leverage a BW query. I focused on explaining how elements from a BW query are returned to Crystal Reports (rather than focusing on report design). In my next blog I will explain formatting capabilities in more detail and demonstrate how to easily create a balance sheet as well as using highlighting and alerting functionalities with Crystal Reports.