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I’m happy to announce the second version of SAP HANA  Assortment Planning for Retail rapid-deployment solution.  An enhanced package based on the first feature pack of the solution is now available.

In case you haven’t heard yet about SAP Assortment Planning for Retail:

This solution supports the selection and planning of product mix by category and location cluster for specified time periods. Assortment planning provides the basis for initial purchase order recommendations and allocation instructions from an approved assortment plan.It is literally the implementation of a retailer’s go-to-market strategy using insights from historical data and optimizations algorithms.

The solution is using SAP HANA –in memory technologies for real-time planning, using optimization algorithms. It has a great UI or to be more precise two great UI’s – on the one hand the easy to use SAP Fiori UI’s and when it comes to the real number crunching, Microsoft SBO analysis workbooks. You can expect best practices in the way the processes are designed. All of that means simplicity and speed for the user.

With this solution you can expect the acceleration of planning cycles for greater efficiency and more seasons/collections to achieve more sales and profit from relevant assortments. More profit comes also from reduced inventory costs by getting the right product mix at the right location, this means as well impact on inventory turn, gross margin and markdowns. The solution provides also the possibility to manage growing volume and complexity.

If retailers invest in a new solution, they expect a fast time to value. So they need an accelerated implementation project and of course also low risks during the implementation – and here the SAP Rapid Deployment Solution (RDS) comes into the game.


I don’t want to repeat all the information about the content of the first package. You can read all about it here in my blog. I want to focus on the new and exiting content you can expect in the second version.


First of all, the new features delivered with feature pack 1 (FP1). Let me just pick three of them:

  • With a new  app called “Manage Product Attributes” you can now create new attributes, assign attributes and attributes values to product categories, edit and delete attributes. It’s now possible to define own attributes and use them in the planning process.
  • The integration of seasons in several apps (e.g.“Manage Location Clusters”,  “My Option Plans”,  “My Assortment Plans”) makes the maintenance of reference and validity time frames more convenient.
  • New, restructured or enhanced workbooks for Plan Assortment, Plan Weekly Sales and Receipts, Plan Options by Module, Plan Options by Cluster, Refine Assortment offers more functionalities for the planner.

The new features round off the planning process and make it faster and easier. For further support of the planner we deliver an additional, new scope item offering supplementary insights around the planning process. We leverage SAP Lumira to provide you with pre-built analytics in three areas:

Location Analysis can be used before the process of Location Clustering to find out the best KPI’s and attributes for clustering. With these insights about the behavior of different stores and categories, the planner can start the location clustering more target-oriented and need less trails to achieve some good cluster results. These are the three reports we deliver here:

  • Location Detail Analysis
  • Location KPI Analysis
  • Location Attribute Analysis

Location Analysis.png

Screenshots Location Analysis


With the Location Cluster Analysis after executing Location clustering the planner get support to determine the best cluster. These reports help to understand the difference between two cluster sets to be able to decide which cluster to choose for the assortment planning process. You can use the following reports here:

  • Cluster Set Analysis
  • Cluster Set Comparison
  • Cluster and Location Performance Analysis
  • Location Cluster Review       

Location Cluster Analysis.png

Screenshots Location Cluster Analysis


Cross and In-Season Analysis on product hierarchy and single product level allows to analyze and compare the sales to planned sales. This is a base for in-season corrections, e.g. creation of markdowns, reordering of products, or transfer of products from locations with bad sales to locations with good sales. It also possible to derive lessons learned to improve the planning process and to avoid mistakes in the future. We offer here the following reports:

  • Plan & Actual comparison
  • Plan & Actual comparison on Location level
  • Product Performance Analysis   

      Cross and In-season Analysis.png

Screenshots Cross and In-season Analysis


This is the first version of additional, analytical content supporting the planning process. We are looking continuously for feedback and new ideas – so don’t be shy and let me know your thoughts 🙂

Of course we also updated the underlying SAP HANA Customer Activity Repository rapid-deployment solution (more information you can find here) to ensure the compatibility of the two packages.

You want to get more detailed information? Please check out the detailed information in service marketplace.


See also:

Blog about the first version of SAP HANA Assortment Planning for Retail rapid-deployment solution

Blog about the latest version of SAP HANA Customer Activity Repository rapid-deployment solution

Service Marketplace: SAP HANA Customer Activity Repository rapid-deployment solution


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2 Comments

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  1. Eric Tan

    Hi Ina Glaes,

    Very useful and informative regarding SAP CAR, could you advice if we have a retail client  which has SAP POSDM, SAP ECC, and SAP BWonHANA with BI 4.1 reporting tools in thier landscape, is SAP CAR still a valid product for them? Trying to understand the target client of this SAP CAR, it seems it more suitable for those retail client which has less sap product used and wanted a product with more out of the box features and less implementation time(SAP CAR in this case)?

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    1. Ina Glaes Post author

      Hi Eric,

      thanks for your feedback and your question.

      SAP CAR is the future platform and the beauty of CAR is driven by the consuming apps using the same data platform and allowing seamless integration. If a customer wants to use e.g. assortment planning (which is only available based on CAR), promotion management, merchandise planning or any of the upcoming apps, CAR is THE choice. A customer with the landscape you described can migrate e.g. his POS DM installation to POS Data transfer and Audit based on CAR. He could keep SAP ECC and connect it to CAR (depending on the release he is using) – and could benefit from real-time reporting on CAR. It might also be useful to keep the BW on HANA and the reporting tools – which cover probably more functional areas and also fulfill very customer specific needs.

      Summary: SAP CAR is the future strategy and most of the new products/apps in retail are based on CAR. If a customer want to take advantage of these, there is no other choice.

      I hope this answer helps you.

      Best regards

      Ina

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