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Well! We have known this for a long time now. Business information at the right time and place in the context of the decision or the problem to be solved, provides tremendous value for the business users


In the past, the effort to architect and embed this business intelligence capability – mapping the data repositories to be able to present the data/information in the right context of the business process or function has been challenging at best. At every step, it required IT folks to be involved to address new data that became available or when there was need for new information fields to be added to an existing report – each change took weeks to implement at best and was definitely not a very scalable option for a business user.


Today, the needs for information and the accompanying analyses change on a daily basis and there is no way for IT to keep pace with the requests. Additionally, a business user may not even be sure where and how to get started. The object of inquiry may have multiple dimensions and the business user may choose one or the other to initiate the inquiry. e.g Sales data may have simple dimensions of region, business unit or time period which can be mapped easily into a single report/dashboard, but when it comes to new product development and associated engineering changes the dimension of data/analysis multiply exponentially and the data needs for the analysis could vary depending on the person or the logic used to diagnose the problem.    


In a recent survey of the information workers, it was found that only 5% of the information workers used BI tools today even though most of these business users believe that they do not have all the information that they need. SAP BusinessObjects Explorer is one product that aims to change this by enabling the “self service BI”.


To help you cut out the hype about BI and get to the truth quickly, let me point you to the SAP BusinessObjects Explorer storefront on EcoHub. There is ton of interesting content out there to learn about this innovative solution that can moves us to the world of self-service BI.


  • Register for a Webinar by SAP, Forrester and Accenture:
  • Download the Forrester Whitepaper titled, “Lean Business Intelligence: Why and How are Enterprises Moving to Self-Service BI”:
  • Watch the video ” Explore your Business at the Speed of Thought”
  • Read the Solution Brief:
  • Play the game ” Explore the World of Micro-Finance”
  • Sign Up for a 21 day free trial


All this is available on the SAP BusinessObjects Explorer Storefront on SAP EcoHub. Happy Exploring …

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  1. Former Member
    Self service BI should not be misinterpreted.
    It can only be linked to front end tools that deliver the “single point of truth”. Meaning that all business reporting logic (KPIs, calculation schemes etc.) is persitentaly stored in a central data warehouse and that end user are enabled to retrieve the information they demand on the one hand, but still matching global definitions and rules.
    Additionaly, self service BI must not lead to the situation, that users spend hours creating their retrieval.
    Finally, most information consumers will still rely on some kind of standard reporting on a regularly basis.

    In the end, self service BI could be possible with today’s existing tools, if the whole DWH and reporting strategy is focussed on usability. New tools, like BIA and BO Explorer, improve query performance dramatically, but the design effort will still remain in IT or IT-related functions.

    1. Witalij Rudnicki
      Although I would nopt agree with Mail in all details, I will agree in the general conclusion that SAP BO Explorer is not a Self-Service BI tool.

      BOE is a great tool for freestyle data analysis, but I would not use “Self Service BI” buzz word to describe BOE.

      I understand that SAP is making enormous effort to place BOE into mainstream market, so I believe study of the “Crossing the Chasm” book would be an appropriate lecture.


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