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Innovations in 4.0: Next-Generation OLAP Analysis

So you’ve read about SAP BusinessObjects Analysis or even played with it. So what! you might say, OLAP analysis is not new after all… True, but SAP BusinessObjects Analysis differs from previous OLAP solutions. It’s the results of a significant software project (code name Pioneer) aimed at bringing together the best of SAP BEx and SAP BusinessObjects Voyager. The outcome: 1- a modern and compelling user experience leading to greater satisfaction and ultimately driving BI adoption among the business crowd. 2- Two different editions; the edition for MS Office for users of Excel and PowerPoint, and the edition for OLAP that provides self-service multidimensional analysis work spaces for personal or shared use over the Web.

Modern and compelling user experience

This is a major strength and value for our customers especially in comparison to legacy BEx front-ends. It enables fast business insights with intuitive drag-and-drop steps to analyze multiple dimensions and hierarchies. All of that in modern and familiar MS Office or web browser environments allowing pervasive deployments with much less dependency on IT.

Office-ribbon like toolbar

MS Office ribbon-like toolbar in the edition for MS Office

Tabbed toolbar in the OLAP edition

And thanks to dedicated panels, workflows such as filtering, conditional formatting and adding calculations can now all be achieved without hiding your data (no more pop-up dialogs).

Analysis panel in the edition for MS Office                         


Data and Layout panels in the edition for OLAP


Light footprint and versatile deployment scenarios

SAP BusinessObjects Analysis is a superb fit for IT organizations wishing to bring innovation without disruption to their SAP NetWeaver BW deployment. First, it runs natively on top of current BW version 7 instances with existing BEx queries. Second, the edition for MS Office comes with a light footprint and versatile deployment scenarios that make it for an easy adoption. Third, it lays the groundwork for ongoing benefits as customers proceed along the business intelligence maturity curve at their own pace.

The edition for MS Office as a client/server application streamlines implementation and mitigates risks associated to the adoption of any new technology. Customers can start with the edition for MS Office for existing MS Office users (such as financial and business analysts) and set their “own pace” when it comes to deploying the SAP BusinessObjects BI platform and the edition for OLAP to more users across the organizations. Customers can even start with the edition for MS Office running with the successful and widely adopted version 3.1 of SAP BusinessObjects BI platform.

Benefits today, benefits tomorrow

While SAP BusinessObjects Analysis delivers tangible business benefits to our customers today, it is also a great investment for the future. As organizations grow more and more accustomed to SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, they have the ‘option’ move at their own pace, adopting other solutions of the SAP BusinessObjects BI suite.


Acknowledgement: I owe a great debt to my colleague and “Analysis expert” Thierry Audas for providing much of the material you just read in this post. Thanks for your contribution Thierry!


Other articles, posts, and links about SAP BusinessObjects 4.0 Innovations:

Innovations in SAP BusinessObjects BI 4.0

Innovations in SAP BusinessObjects 4.0 Presentation

Innovations in 4.0: The New Semantic Layer

Innovations in 4.0: Unified User Experience

Innovation in 4.0: Personalized, Self-Service Access to Information

Knowledge Center for Analysis, edition for Microsoft Office 1.1

Knowledge Center for Analysis, edition for OLAP 4.0 

SAP BusinessObjects Analysis test drive (external link)

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      Former Member
      Great overview! Rellay good work. For me, Analysis is the future and a very clear step forward!


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      Former Member
      Blog Post Author
      Thanks Juergen; I've added an external link that points to an Analysis review performed by a BI expert/professional - Peter Hendrikx
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      Former Member
      Hi Perre,

      Nice Overview. I have a doubt here. What is the role of a developer or a consultant when working with the tools like Analysis or Explorer since they are pretty self service based as far as end users are concerned.

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      Former Member
      Blog Post Author
      Hi John.
      You are absolutely right about the self-service focus of our Analysis and Explorer solutions.

      With regard to OLAP data usage in businesses, I would suggest that the opportunity for developers and consultants is helping expand OLAP data usage to new audiences (not just the analysts crowd) by creating more traditional reports and analyses (i.e. using CR and Web Intelligence) based on these cubes.
      In the past that option was somewhat limited. The 4.0 enabler here is the ability for CR and Web Intelligence to retain the data set dimensions and hierachies (where in the past they would have been flatten).

      For Explorer, it's perhaps not as obvious, but my personal experience is telling me that when you start using Explorer, many business users end up using Web Intelligence (most likely because they want to get down to a level of details not necessarily available within the published facets). So complementary analyses to  existing Explorer views could be an opportunity for consultants and developers.

      BI Consultants and Developers, we would like to hear your thoughts on the topic... so jump in the conversation and let us what your're thinking!

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      Former Member
      Hi ,

      I am new to the Advance Analysis , but i tried the Advance Analysis on my existing BEx Query ,  It is awesome , but i am afraid that the maximum number of rows that can be  displayed, can i say it would be equal to the Bex Analyzer

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      Former Member
      Blog Post Author
      Good to hear that you like Analysis with your existing BEx Queries.
      For more advanced technical discussions and questions, I recommend the BI forums where you will likely find someone willing to share their Analysis expertise with you.

      You can find the BI forums here: /community [original link is broken]