I was rather thrilled when I saw a Business Objects for Higher Educationappear in my RSS reader about Business Objects within the Higher Education market since these are two areas where I’m active in. Sadly enough, this excitement turned into a disappointment. So I decided to add a few lines of comment to this blog, but since the words kept flowing, I decided to turn this into a blog.
I totally agree with Bhanu’s comment. This blog has to me no added value at all and contains nothing more than hollow marketing crap. Sorry is this hurts Marco, but I like to say things in straight words.
First of all, this blog puts forward that there wasn’t any tool available for the Higher Education (and Research) market before Business Objects. This is rather strange for an SAP employee to say and he seems to forget SAP’s own product called BEx. I didn’t see anything about it in this blog at all and even the server end of BI isn’t mentioned at all!.
Four year old articles on SCN like http://tinyurl.com/3g27kx show that there IS something available for my sector.
And yes, not everything is perfect, especially after the release of the BEx suite 7 where SAP is somewhat wide off the mark. First of all it changed the BEx Analyzer in such way that even wintered users loose track. The Web Application Designer has even lost the table interface with the result that people (still) don’t have a proper way to format BI data to their desire.
A simple layout like
Title (dependable on gender of person) Name First_name
is not possible to interface with the current WAD. This is not understandable in times of flashy desktop applications, widgets, etc.
A last example is the report designer which is a joke and can’t be taken seriously. It’s much easier, faster and more flexible to create a BSP application which reads the BI data and you convert things on the fly with e.g. HTMLDOC (see also http://tinyurl.com/43dsn9).
In certainly hope that the BO tools can finally bring consolation but -personally- I will not yield to temptation though to kick out everything we’ve built up all the years that the BEx suite exists like Marco/SAP seem to do. It is rather strange that SAP was promoting BI Visual Composer as the perfect management tool last year at SAPphire where one seems to say the opposite this year. I know that one will say that BEx will be supported for x years, but the problems with the current release will not be solved though.
Sure, SAP has acquired a company with its product and you want to promote this as much as possible since one needs to make one’s money / capital work. I understand this very well.
But this isn’t the way to do this. Some examples and a comparison with BEx is the least I would expect over here. A migration path and more important the price for all of this are in my eyes a must. This blog seems deliberate to obscure the fact that BO -as I understand it- will keep its own price structure and that the customers will need reaches into his pocket very deep (again).