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Author's profile photo Ajay Gupta

SAP BI 4.2 – Choosing the Right Tool – Decision Tree

The purpose of this post is to provide assistance to the SAP BI team and helping then decide what tool to use based on users requirements.  This decision tree selection process was created working with SAP BI team at one of our large government clients.  Please see below image that asks the key question in helping you choose the right tool for the user requirement.

SAP had well-established guidelines on selecting tools based on organizations that have SAP BW integrated with the SAP BusinessObjects suite of tools. The general guidelines recommended:

  • For Query & Analysis and general interactive reporting where BW is in place, use Web Intelligence with BICS connection to BW
  • For OLAP InfoCube navigation where BW is in place, the Analysis for OLAP and Analysis for MS Office are the tools of choice – typically used by business / planning analysts. Analysis for MS Office must first pass all security requirements prior to any implementation.
  • For Operational or print-perfect reporting from either BW or directly from ERP (ECC), Crystal Reports is preferred but Web Intelligence can also work depending on the complexity required.
  • For management and executive Dashboard where BW is in place, a combination of SAP Lumira Designer &/or Discovery will do the job depending on complexity of BW Queries, Web Intelligence can also work in some situations especially with all the new functionally added since SP4.
  • Finally for Data Visualization / Data Discovery SAP Lumira Discovery will work best, especially with Explorer set to be sunset within the next 2 years.


Hopefully the extensive work done at our Government customer with SAP team can help with your deployment easier process.  Please keep this selection process is only a guide with your SAP BI Tools selection process.

NOTE: This is based on-premise deployment only, next version I will incorporate SAC.





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      Author's profile photo Venkateswara Guptha
      Venkateswara Guptha

      Excellent compilation, for simplifying the decision process, very helpful info.

      Author's profile photo Manikandan Elumalai
      Manikandan Elumalai

      Good one Ajay!

      Author's profile photo AMIT KUMAR

      Thanks for sharing.It will be good if you will add SAP Analytics cloud also in selection tree.

      Similar is available with differentiating Lumira Discovery vs Designer.


      Author's profile photo Ajay Gupta
      Ajay Gupta
      Blog Post Author

      Thanks Amit,

      I will keep this in mind next time.  This customer was full on-premise deployment.


      Author's profile photo Jawahar Konduru
      Jawahar Konduru

      I think Discovery is not a tool we need to even consider for any new development since SAP direction is SAC moving forward. TechEd, SAP made their point SAC is way to go.  Even Designer is also will be part of SAC in future.

      Author's profile photo Govinda Banothu
      Govinda Banothu

      Good one Ajay and its very helpful and make decision process easy. Have you prepared for SAC?