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Author's profile photo Tammy Powlas

AskSAP Call Notes focusing on Advanced Analytics

These are some brief notes with question and answer and polls from yesterday’s SAP webcast.  The usual disclaimer applies that things in the future are subject to change.

Also note I didn’t stay for the whole session so I may have missed some points.


Figure 1: Source: SAP

The Speed of evolution has changed.  As Figure 1 shows, today we have the challenges and inefficiencies of current analytics landscape including complexity, speed, and cost (Source: @SAPAnalytics)


Figure 2: Source: SAP

SAP wants to democratize advanced analytics and make it easy, fast, and efficient as the slides shows.

They want to make it easy so you don’t need advanced degrees to do this work.


Figure 3: Source: SAP

Figure 3 shows you can embed Analytics so the user doesn’t know it’s underneath

Business Analysts are the lynch pin, want things easier to use said SAP’s Shekhar Iyer


Figure 4: Source: SAP

The above shows an overview of predictive analytics solutions from SAP


Figure 5: Source: SAP

Figure 5 shows bringing together lines of business and industries to make things “efficient and effective”

SAP says to consider the new analysis that is possible with predictive analytics & put our creativity to work


Q: What is biggest stumbling block?

A: Complexity, KXEN – Infinite Insight combines both


Figure 6: Source: SAP

Figure 6 shows the results of attendees poll responses.  Most of us aren’t using any predictive analytics solution.


Figure 7: Source: SAP

A customer example is eBay. They saved millions by finding an attribute that contributed to a lack of pipeline (Source: @SAPAnalytics)


Figure 8: Source: SAP

Analogy was made that InfiniteInsight is the espresso machine & Predictive Analysis is the barista

Learn more about InfiniteInsight at ASUG Annual Conference, where the data modeler for the 2012 Obama Presidential Campaign discusses Using Analytics to Help Win the US Presidency


Figure 9: Source: SAP

The above shows an overview of the HANA Predictive Analysis Library (PAL)

Learn how a customer is using PAL – see Predictive Analytics for Procurement Lead Time Forecasting at Lockheed Martin Space Systems Using SAP HANA, R, and the SAP Predictive Analysis Toolset at ASUG Annual Conference next month.


Figure 10: Source: SAP

The above shows an overview of SAP R Integration for predictive analytics


Q: Can you contrast solutions – R with HANA PAL

A: Algorithms with HANA PAL are a subset of R, optimized to run in R

SAP will continue to invest in #HANA PAL, R Integration

Continue to invest in PAL. Added 100 engineers in this area

Q: How see algorithms in KXEN?

A: Not algorithms in KXEN/InfiniteInsight – they are functions

What you see in InfiniteInsight are functions, sorted by category vs. the algorithms

Proprietary algorithms in KXEN -/ II but they do share details


Figure 11: Source: SAP

Attendees said the biggest barrier to adopting predictive analytics is skills shortage.  Second is cost.


Figure 12: Source: SAP

Figure 12 shows the smart vending example of “Smart operations”

Asset management is used keep things cold

It also helps personalize the experience


Figure 13: Source: SAP

The customer in Figure 13 went from 4 days to 3 hours breakdown time on the Smart Vending example.


Figure 14: Source: SAP

Figure 14 shows a Cox case study.

Question and Answer

Q: I’d like to understand predictive and stochastic capabilities and how it understands unstructured data

A: address any model data

Unstructured – when build predictive models, need to structure data in some ways

Use SAP HANA libraries, data services, InfiniteInsight to structure data

Q: How often do you switch models out?

A: It depends on business problem and data

Tool to manage models is Infinite Insight –Factory, which lets you reconstruct original data set on the fly. Model management is a big piece


Figure 15: Source: SAP

Figure 15 asks who is using predictive analytics to build models in your organization?  Looks like it is mostly the business analyst


Figure 16: Source: SAP

Figure 16 is an overview of future direction/roadmap of predictive analytics solutions from SAP. For more details attend ASUG Annual Conference Session Predictive Analysis Roadmap with SAP’s Charles Gadalla.

If you missed yesterday’s session and you can register for today’s 7:00 PM session

Other (source: @SAPAnalytics):

  • If you are interested in test driving SAP Predictive there is a free trial available at
  • SAP offers Rapid Deployment Solutions to speed up deployments
  • It can use HANA smart data access feature. You can use HANA as overlay to federate the data into Predictive Analysis.

ASUG Annual Conference

Preview of ASUG Annual Conference 2014: Focus on Analysis Office/OLAP/Predictive

Share your Story: Call for Sessions for ASUG at SAP d-code (former TechEd)

You are invited to submit a proposal to share your experience and expertise with your colleagues to speak at SAP d-code to be held October 20-24 in Las Vegas.  Others will benefit from your experience while you make a valuable contribution to the profession’s field of knowledge.

Follow this link to create a speaker account where you can formally submit your proposal, review important deadlines, and other general information about SAP d-code.  The deadline to submit your abstract is May 25. If you have any questions, please e-mail

Upcoming ASUG Analytics Webcasts:

May 15: Lumira Self Service for Business User

May 21: SAP Lumira Question and Answer Session

June 23: Predictive Analysis Roadmap

September 15: Design Studio and Analysis Scenarios on HANA

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