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Analytics in a box – cool stuff, but ….

First off – it was a great meeting. Totally well organized, and it was awesome to see an excellent panel of passionate SAP customers. Special thanks to Mark Finnern for inviting me and other mentors to attend.

 This is an absolutely positive move from SAP to offer prepackaged analytics. I like a lot about it

1. It uses existing tools

2. It is a rapid mart type thing – so an SAP backend is not needed, which means there is a big market out there for the solution.

3. Demo on iPad was awesome – speed, visuals etc all were super exciting

4. Hundreds of KPI’s make it money well spent – since there is no need to reinvent the wheel

5. These Apps are friendly to federation of source data, and has a standard reference architecture.

6. Bill M and Keith C were both extremely good on the stage, and gave ample time to customer panel to talk. That was awesome.

That being said, there are some concerns/questions too

1. How does SAP plan to scale this? Currently there are 10 Apps for 6 Industries. Which means there are 20 odd other industries that SAP covers, to get Apps. What will SAP develop and what will rest of ecosystem develop?

2. If Partners develop apps, would SAP support it with AGS? These are not $1.99 Apps that some one will buy without a serious assurance that SAP will support, and not some unknown shop.

3. SAP expects 8 weeks type implementations for this. They also expect only 70% out of the box for a customer. I am not clear if SAP will support a customized version of this product. Is there a definition of what is a modification and what is an upgrade friendly enhancement for these Apps?

4. During the demo, I saw the ability to email alerts. That is cool – but if Streamwork is the way of the future, why is it not integrated into the App? Is there a roadmap for it?

5. If this paradigm has to scale, then service market place should not be where it is found. It should be in ecohub. Otherwise how will non-SAP customers find it?

6. With HANA coming full steam ahead and with BOBJ integration into business suite, a lot of cool reporting can be done off it with less pain than before. Will that decrease the appetite for prepackaged apps ?

7. Last but not least, I was disappointed to not see IBM in the list of ecosystem partners displayed at the press conference.

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  • One thing we haven’t considered is what role benchmarking could/should play in all of this.  SAP has spent a great deal of time and money on their Value Management area. Hopefully they were consulted when these metrics were developed, and I would like to one day see (if they aren’t already there) benchmark data embedded into the dashboards via web services.
  • Vijay,

    “,but….” says it all! I also read Vital View. I’m getting more and more confused. And I guess this is a good thing.

    “Thriving on Chaos” explains the current situation better:
    “The winners of tomorrow will deal proactively with chaos, will look at the chaos per se as the source of market advantage, not as a problem to be got around. Chaos and uncertainty are (will be) market opportunities; capitalizing on fleeting market anomalies will be the successful business’s greatest accomplishment.”

    I am starting to see Chaos and uncertainty as market opportunities.