Machine Learning with SAP Hana and SAP Fiori-Inspiricon

Machine Learning with SAP Hana and SAP Fiori

What is Machine Learning and why is it important?

Well, first of all it is nowadays a hype. So, it is important to at least to know what the rest of the world is talking about.

And the reason why it is a hype, is because machine learning is bringing huge advances in various fields. It gives computers the possibility not only to perform certain tasks, but it also enables a computer to first learn the rules of performing a given task (learn from experience, from historical data).

Let us take the healthcare field for example, machine learning algorithms are successfully used to spot signs of various sever illnesses (breast cancer for example) as early as possible and reduce the risk on the patients.

Financial institutions also use machine learning algorithms for fraud detection and to combat money laundering. These algorithms are able to analyse millions of transactions and point out those that indicate suspicious patterns.

In the online security field, machine learning algorithms are used to track suspicious behaviour and detect privacy intrusions.

And also, we should not forget that we all use machine learning in our daily lives. Whether it is Siri we summon on our Apple device or Alexa on our home pod, whether we use Social Networks in the internet, or the Google Maps in our car, the core of these systems is powered by machine learning algorithms.

And in the daily operating business of companies, machine learning algorithms are automating basic tasks that would otherwise be done manually, like analysing invoices to detect duplicates, orders, etc. …

In the field of BI, one of the reasons why machine learning is important is because it is a part of the techniques used in predictive analytics. This gives employees the possibilities to predict certain results in the future. Sales people for example can make predictions of their sales volume, managers can evaluate multiple predictions of how certain decisions might impact future results, and make their decision based on these.

How does it work?

Let’s take a look at this quiz:

  • 2 → 4
  • 3 → 9
  • 5 → 25
  • 6 → ?

Now why have you been able to figure out that 36 is the right answer? Because you have recognized a pattern. And that is exactly what machine algorithms are doing. They are trained on sets of sample data where they are learning to recognize patterns and match these patterns to the correct responses (they are Learning from Experience). After the training we can query the algorithm for a response by providing it with a new set of data and what we get is (hopefully) an accurate response.

The machine learning algorithms are designed to work on problems much more complex than the quiz presented above, with a great number of input dimensions. This enables them to perform complex task like image or speak recognition, or forecasting some potential sales results based on complex historical market data.

Machine Learning with SAP Hana and Fiori

Since Machine Learning is such a hot topic, it generates a lot of curiosity and desire to experiment, and that was also the case for us. We at Inspiricon became curios how this new field could bring added values to area we are already working in, which includes BI, SAP Fiori and SAP Hana.

Well, it turns out SAP Hana has already a pretty robust support for Machine Learning. SAP provides the SAP Hana Predictive Analytics Library which offers the possibility to use machine learning algorithms and even build neural networks. Combining the power of this with SAP Fiori, it is possible to build some interesting applications in the field of Predictive Analytics. For example, we were able to build a small Fiori Application to predict the daily and monthly Sales figures for individual stores within a supermarket chain. Following illustration shows a rough overview of an architecture for this application:

Architecture_Application

The Fiori Application we have developed would be targeted to managers, and they would be able to explore the forecast until the end of the year from within the Fiori Application. Even more, we are experimenting further with this scenario and investigate how to extend it with other features like the integration of What-If Scenarios, such that one can investigate how certain management or marketing decisions (like promotions) can influence the predicted sales:

Fiori_Predictive_Demo

Conclusion

Machine learning can already be tackled with a simple Hana backend!

While there are powerful big tools out there like Tensorflow for neural networks or SAP Predictive Analytics, what is important to know is, that these are not necessarily mandatory in order to approach the topic. As explained above, SAP Hana already provides the means to build such approaches and with SAP Fiori it is possible to build an UI Application tailored for the specific scenario that is implemented. And the preliminary data analysis can be performed with powerful data analytics tools that are available for free for Python (Pandas) or R. So, with no additional cost in licensing or infrastructure this is can be a very attractive approach, especially for smaller problems that do not require intensive data processing.

Which approach is finally chosen however, depends on the specific use-case and shall be properly be evaluated by the development team. The maintenance of the solution and the license cost will also be an important factor for the owner of the solution and must be taken into account when making a decision.

Image sources: Inspiricon

Author
Gerald Iakobinyi-Pich Solution Architect
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: cluj@inspiricon.de

SAP Fiori 2.0 – The short story

How can Fiori 2.0 help your business

SAPUI5 is the brand new JavaScript framework that is slowly, but surely, starting to shape a new view into the SAP world. Under the guidelines dictated by SAP, SAPUI5 is making an appearance as SAP Fiori. This promises to be the next significant step in the user experience for all SAP users.

Figure 1 – Fiori Launchpad on Belize theme

What is new in SAP Fiori 2.0?

One of the main improvements is the new theme called Belize. This replaces the old default theme BlueCrystal in order to give our business applications a fresh look. The main difference, that can be spotted at a glance by looking at two side-by-side applications is the color scheme that is lighter and the application controls are more compact to provide a more plesant view of the work to be done.

The new aspect of the SAP Fiori is not set in stone, as it can still be customized with the help of custom themes to fit your own businesses style.

Another advantage of the Fiori 2.0 consists of the ability to add an SAP menu and user menu in the Fiori Launchpad through the App Finder. This allows users to replace the SAP Logon user menu with a fresh looking portal inside the Launchpad.

Figure 2 – User menu introduced by Fiori 2.0

One big improvement that comes with SAP Fiori 2.0 is the redesign of the SAP Launchpad. The new philosophy is that the SAP Launchpad will be your single entry point into all the applications. This is done in order to provide a faster and more productive experience for the laborious business processes that are going to be converted to SAP Fiori 2.0.

Among the changes that SAP Fiori 2.0 brings to the table is the new Me Area that facilitates the access to recently used applications and personalized menues to enrich the user experience. Along this a new Notification area was added in which users can see at a glance any updates that they need to be aware of. These new areas in the

SAP Fiori Launchpad come to aid the user in their everday tasks and increase the productivity.

Fig 3 bluecrystal vs. belize

Figure 3 – BlueCrystal vs. Belize

SAP Fiori 2.0 introduces new templates that can be easily customized to fit every company’s needs. These are the Overview Pages, List Reports and Object Pages. They can be used in SAP Web IDE to boost your business productivity.

With the introduction of Fiori 2.0 there is only one header bar on top of the screen. This new and improved header bar is generated based on the Launchpad header and the application header to free the screen of unnecessarily used space and conform to the newly released Fiori Guidelines. For existing applications, SAP provides an automatic adapter mechanism to allow existing apps to adjust their header layout. However, it is recommended that you test your custom applications compatibility to the adapter before switching it on.

Most of the Fiori Guidelines remain unchanged, but in order to fit the new Fiori standard some applications will need to be changed. Most of SAP Fiori 2.0 features do not affect the controls per se, but mostly the Launchpad integration and the theme. When developing on of the newly introduced objects (Overview Pages, List Reports, and Object Pages) there will be the need for suitable annotated OData service in order to keep the implementation time to a minimum and bypass the UI coding completely.

How change to SAP Fiori 2.0?

If you already make use of the SAP Fiori application platform and you wish to switch over to the new standard proposed by SAP, there a a few steps in order to get there.

First of all you need to upgrade your Front-End Server to version 3.0 and SAP_UI to 751. Another concern that you might have when upgrading your system is that the applications are compatible with the new Belize theme, otherwise you will need to redesign your visual interface to meet the new standard.

The Fiori 2.0 experience when working with an SAP S/4HANA background is revamped from the old standard. Classic applications, such as Dynpro and SAP GUI for HTML are now based on the newly introduced theme Belize. The change is also planned for SAP GUI for Windows. As with previous applications, SAP GUI applications need to be reviewed before switching over to Belize in order to remove inconsistencies that might appear with the application of the new theme. As mentioned before, SAP Menu and User Menu can now be added to the SAP Launchpad in order to have a single point of entry for all SAP related activities.

Business Workflow integration is also included with the introduction of the Fiori 2.0 through SAP Fiori Notifications. This works for all the workflow tasks which can be processed with SAP My Inbox.

With the UI Theme Designer you can also adapt the Belize theme to your corporate identity and use SAP Screen Personas to simplify applications with the SAP Fiori visual theme. SAP Fiori 2.0 technology can also be included in SAP Business Suite. However, SAP Business Suite systems do not integrate the SAP Fiori notifications functionality.

Author
Andrei GhiuraAssociate
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: cluj@inspiricon.de

Inspiricon’s SAP Fiori app receives the ERCO Innovation Award 2017

The Performance Cockpit App scores high at the annual Innovation Award

Each year, ERCO GmbH honors outstanding innovations. In 2017, the Performance Cockpit App won the coveted award in the Innovation Award Organization category.

You can read all about the project in our blog (click here for the full article). The main objective was to deliver a solution to analyze and visualize information with SAP Fiori in real time. The project aimed to provide ERCO’s 250 sales representatives all over the globe with a mobile app that would allow them to have their daily updated key figures readily available on their iPads.

In the end, we had created a mobile, streamlined, and most importantly highly intuitive process that enables ERCO to monitor and modify its forecasts. This puts the latest data at the fingertips of executives and sales staff alike. This adds significant value to the data, which is particularly beneficial in business intelligence scenarios, where the worth of information is determined by its timeliness.

What can the Performance Cockpit App do?

The app, among other things, gives ERCO:

  • shop floor options regardless of time and place
  • performance overviews that are updated daily
  • more visibility for its sales division and headquarters
  • the ability to derive sales-related measures
  • periodic annual forecasts for its most important key figures

 

Key Figures Performance Cockpit

Figure 1: Overview of the key figures compared to projected values and last year’s value

 

Oder Volume Performance Cockpit App

Figure 2: Overview of the order volume compared to the planning data and last year’s values

“We are looking forward to work with Inspiricon on implementing more exciting projects in the future,” said Celina Berg, the project’s manager, after completion of the project.

Go to our website to read the success story on this project.

Author
Gerald Iakobinyi-Pich Solution Architect
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: cluj@inspiricon.de
ERCO Project SAP Fiori

How to analyze and visualize information with SAP Fiori in real time

Hello everybody:

Today, we would like to share with you a project which was about introducing data processing and visualization in real time. Let’s get right into it:

Our Customer

ERCO GmbH is a leading international specialist in architectural lighting, using 100% LED technology. The family business operates globally in 55 countries worldwide with around 1.000 employees.

The Initial Situation

ERCO asked us to develop an app that would not only visualize key figures, but also give users the opportunity to comment on the figures directly. This would for example apply for variance analysis. Taking into account all this information, sales will be supported immensely.

The Challenge

ERCO wanted to optimize the process of exchanging information between the sales staff and senior management by introducing an SAP Fiori application and integrating it with an SAP BW system.

This translated into the following project requirements for us:

  • Make reports and feedback options more easily accessible for sales representatives – also via mobile access.
  • Allow reports to be created in real time.
  • Capture comments and estimates by sales reps in real time and store them in a central location.
  • Make the consolidated data available to senior management as soon as it is put in by the sales staff.

The Objective

The objective of the project was to deliver a mobile iPad app that would allow the companies approximately 250 employees in the field to always stay on top of their key sales figures. Through this, the company wanted to provide its field staff with a means to pull information on their current sales performance at any time and from anywhere.

The following graph shows you – vastly simplified – the project steps, the changes as well as advantages of the SAP Fiori application:

Process ERCO Project

By the time the project was finished, we had created and established a mobile, streamlined, and most importantly highly intuitive process that enables ERCO to monitor and modify its forecasts. Executives and sales staff alike now always have the latest data at their fingertips. This adds significant value to the data; because, after all, when it comes to business intelligence, the worth of information is determined by its timeliness.

So we were of course very happy that our customer was very satisfied after the implementation of the new SAP Fiori application. As stated Celina Berg, Project Manager, ERCO GmbH:

“Inspiricon professionally implemented the project from start to finish. Our communication was open and straightforward. There was full visibility into the project’s status at all times and all of our project objectives were achieved in time and budget. We are looking forward to continuing to work with Inspiricon in the future.”

We are excited to do future projects together!

Read the Success Story about this project on our website.

You want to learn more about SAP Fiori? Visit our blog on http://en.inspiricon.de/category/fiori/

Author
Gerald Iakobinyi-Pich Solution Architect
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: cluj@inspiricon.de
Design thinking puts people first

How to find your way to Design Thinking

What is design thinking?

Design Thinking is a methodology that puts people first.

“Design thinking is a human-centered approach to innovation that draws from the designer’s toolkit to integrate the needs of people, the possibilities of technology, and the requirements for business success.”
— Tim Brown, president and CEO, IDEO.

What this means is that design thinking is a methodology that revolves around the experience of its users. Whenever a product or a project is developed, the focus is on the solution and not the problem. The aim is to design a solution that best suits its users, and not one that only solves a technical challenge.

While the design (look & feel) of a product or solution is clearly important, this is only one piece of the puzzle, as design thinking focuses on the whole aspects of a solution, the look & feel, usage, user satisfactions and benefits.

“Most people make the mistake of thinking design is what it looks like. People think it’s this veneer — that the designers are handed this box and told, ‘Make it look good!’ That’s not what we think design is. It’s not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”
— Steve Jobs, Co-founder, Chairman and CEO of Apple Inc.

Why is design thinking important?

An assessment of the Design Management Institute shows that design centric companies like Apple, Coca Cola, IBM and Nike have outperformed the S&P 500 index over a period of 10 years by about 228% (read more).

Design Centric Organizations
(Source: http://c.ymcdn.com/sites/www.dmi.org/resource/resmgr/Docs/DMI_DesignValue.pdf)

This study clearly shows that companies putting the user experience in focus are more prosperous. Hence, a focus on user experience yields better value for the shareholders.

The stages of design thinking

Each stage of the methodology involves a deep human interaction and understanding:

  1. Discovery – The first stage of design thinking is to gain an empathic understanding of the problem that needs to be solved. Get involved, gather knowledge, and observe the users, empathising with people to understand their experiences and motivations. Get a deep personal understanding of the issues involved. Empathy is crucial in this process to understand the users and gain insight into their needs.
  2. Interpretation – Analyse the observations from the previous stage. Synthesise the data gathered in the previous stage, to define the problems that you and your team have identified.
  3. Ideation – Start to generate ideas. Think outside the box, innovate. There are various ideation techniques that can be used to stimulate thinking and generating ideas that you can use, for example: Brainstorming, Collaborative Sketching, and Reverse Thinking. Try to find new solutions, get as many new ideas as possible at the beginning and refine them during the ideation process.
  4. Experimentation – Prototype: build one or more inexpensive prototypes and test them. This is an iterative process whose purpose is to validate the ideas. Share the prototypes, let your team test them, but also include people outside of the team, for example the future real-time user. Get their feedback, and if required re-iterate the Ideation process.
  5. Evolution – Implement the best ideas. Test the final product, gather feedback, and monitor the user’s experience. This will probably reveal various issues and aspects that will require a refinement of the product. It is important to understand the context of the products use, how people interact with it and how they feel about it. Use this knowledge to further improve the product.

SAP Fiori and design thinking

SAP Fiori is the answer of SAP for the requirements for better user experience.
It is a design guide and design standard for business applications.
It is the new face of SAP for the business user with a focus on the end-to-end user experience.

It not only provides a better-looking design of the applications, but also enables the delivery of business applications to basically any platform an end-user might be using, desktop or mobile.

While SAP Fiori is the design guide for the user experience that business applications shall offer to their users, the SAPUI5 libraries provides the tools for easily building applications on desktop or mobile devices that follow the SAP Fiori guidelines.

But it does not stop there.

These are only a part of the ecosystem that SAP is slowly building to facilitate the use of the design thinking methodology. Tools like SAP Web IDE and quick prototyping tools like build emerge and are continuously improved in order to provide development teams the tools to support them in the design thinking process.

With SAP Fiori and the new ecosystem emerging around it, SAP also strongly encourages the adoption of the design thinking methodology to improve the business processes for companies.

As for the real business value of using design thinking and focusing on UX, this is a topic we have covered in another article.

Author
Gerald Iakobinyi-Pich Solution Architect
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: cluj@inspiricon.de
Big Data and Artificial Intelligence

Big data and artificial intelligence – a powerful duo that will shape our future

SAP makes artificial intelligence a reality

Using intelligent machines to analyze big data is no longer just wishful thinking. SAP has turned yesterday’s dreams into today’s reality. Based on SAP HANA, SAP has breathed life into multiple software components capable of thinking autonomously and analyzing vast amounts of data. As you are reading this, its software is recognizing faces and objects and carrying out large-scale analyses that would neither be possible nor conceivable if done manually.

With SAP, artificial intelligence (AI) has made the leap from vision to reality.

SAP Clea and SAP Leonardo: artificial intelligence is gaining momentum

SAP has added a new version to its HANA platform. Along with it, a number of AI and IoT (Internet of Things) services were introduced to the market.
SAP’s new SAP Clea software runs in the SAP cloud and is capable of autonomous learning without requiring any explicit programming. Its analytical intelligence is already being leveraged by companies like Munich Re and the European Space Agency. The insurance giant Munich Re is constantly calculating the risk associated with forest fires using data on vegetation lines. These calculations are supported by intelligent software and their capability for large-scale big data analytics.

SAP Leonardo is the name of SAP’s IoT solution portfolio. Just like its namesake Leonardo da Vinci, SAP Leonardo takes a broad and interdisciplinary approach – a fundamental requirement for the Internet of Things. Information from across the company is taken into consideration, paving the way for the development of novel solutions and business models.

SAP Leonardo is designed to assist potential customers in crafting an IoT strategy and in identifying the solutions that will best meet their specific needs.

Because one thing is for certain: There is no such thing as the one piece of software for IoT and AI. It usually takes a combination of multiple applications.

The digital core: The S/4HANA SAP Enterprise Suite

S/4HANA is already being leveraged by 4,000 companies in 25 countries. It forms the digital core for the transformation and can be used for IoT and AI/machine learning applications. SAP has introduced several additions in the cloud, such as Connected Logistics, Connected Vehicles, Connected Manufacturing, Connected Assets, Connected Retail, and Future Cities. These allow companies to, for example, manage their fleets, control quality levels, and calculate routes.

In the field of artificial intelligence and machine learning services, SAP offers a range of services on the SAP Cloud Platform:

  • Resume Matching to streamline recruiting
  • Cash Application to analyze payment behavior
  • Social Media Customer Service
  • Brand Intelligence
  • Fraud Detection for insurers and banks

SAP Fiori – the new SAP UI

SAP Fiori is an initiative that aims to enhance usability (for more information, please refer to our website and our blog). With Fiori 2.0, SAP wants to harmonize the user experience for all SAP applications and has included a number of improvements in its visual design and usability.

This is yet another area where AI is leveraged. The user is assisted by a co-pilot that anticipates user actions and prepares them accordingly. Its built-in voice control, for example, streamlines maintenance and warehouse workflows. Artificial intelligence is used to analyze suppliers and categorize them according to a predefined requirements profile.

Inspired: straightforward big data analytics

The combination of artificial intelligence and big data supported by SAP Fiori makes for more effective automation and analysis. The software tries to foresee what actions the user wants to take, enhancing effectiveness and boosting speed. SAP Fiori enables companies to conduct large-scale analyses of big data and to automatically monitor important business metrics. Anomalies, trends, and patterns are automatically communicated to the responsible staff in an interface that puts the user first. The available data is analyzed in a central user interface that allows for intuitive operation. There is no longer a need for complex modifications of input and output parameters.

Artificial intelligence ensures that the algorithms deliver meaningful results without requiring input from the business departments.

The main objective of machine learning is to identify data patterns and relationships and to apply them to new sets of data. The underlying algorithms are based on statistics, the calculation of probabilities, and algebra. With SAP Application Intelligence, data is the fuel that powers machine learning.

Deep learning: where machines outperform humans

One discipline of machine learning is known as deep learning: Here, neural networks are flooded with vast amounts of data. The intention is to enable the software to recognize faces, classify objects, and understand language. Capabilities that are constantly being refined and increasingly used in robotics applications.

This also opens up new medical applications:
Soon, the data of individual cancer patients will be compared to millions of medical records to enable the customization of healthcare through precision medicine. Artificial intelligence works for the broad mass and delivers very promising results. The software is increasingly becoming an all-rounder that can be leveraged across the board. SAP Application Intelligence is capable of unearthing relationships that would otherwise stay hidden from the human eye. Working under time constraints, human employees often overlook crucial data that then remains undiscovered in day-to-day business.

Conclusion

Artificial intelligence has already found its way into business intelligence solutions, where it is used to control data analytics, for example in order to detect anomalies or automatically structure and interpret data. On top of that, AI algorithms are also used to monitor data streams.

The intelligent and integrative interaction between new SAP components such as Clea, Leonardo, or Fiori on the basis of SAP HANA Cloud and on-premises solutions are continuously inspiring Inspiricon to search for innovative services for our customers.

You are curious to learn more and explore new potential business? Do not hesitate to contact us now!

Author
Claudio Volk Member of the Management Board
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: info@inspiricon.de
SAP UX Calculator

The SAP UX Calculator – designed to uncover savings opportunities

User experience (UX) is about so much more than just making your user interfaces look “sexier”. The objective should be to reduce operational costs and enable your users to work more effectively. To this end, SAP has developed the UX Calculator that provides valuable insights into how much money can be saved.

We have already talked about UX in our blog. SAP Fiori is essential to crafting a great user experience – because SAP Fiori represents a new personalized, responsive, and simple experience across different devices. Read more about SAP Fiori here and in our blog.

The cornerstones of the UX Calculator

Using a SAP system can be very challenging sometimes, which means that employees need to be provided with the support they need. At the same time, the cost of training can be staggering.

SAP surveyed different end users and compiled information about their problems and wishes with regard to using SAP systems. In a project that was launched as a first test, they were able to reduce the number of clicks required by more than 40 percent. The test demonstrated that a new design powered by SAP Fiori is indeed capable of contributing to massive cost savings. And there’s another factor: You can use SAP Fiori to customize your user interface to reflect your corporate identity.

How improving the user experience with Fiori can save you money

Let us assume here that you are still using the traditional SAP user interfaces (Web Dynpro). The UX Calculator will ask questions about a range of components to identify the potential savings that can be achieved by switching to Fiori and optimizing the processes involved.

Among other things, you will be asked to specify the average salary of your employees, the number of training hours, and the cost per hour of training along with the frequency and cost of IT support tickets. The calculations will give you an idea of the cost savings and efficiency gains that would be possible for your company if you were to switch from the traditional user interfaces to a Fiori interface. This new interface can be adapted to meet the needs of your company’s specific processes.

What the SAP tool does

The UX Calculator performs a number of different calculations. SAP uses them to identify those lines of business that have the greatest potential for improvement and are therefore best suited for investment. It focuses on four core areas:

  • productivity
  • cost of training
  • IT support
  • and the number of cost-inducing errors.

The results of the UX calculation are leveraged to create a score, which in turn serves to identify the main problems and develop an improvement strategy.

SAP derives all values from actual customer data. The calculator compares the numbers obtained from other customers with those used in the calculation and puts them into relation. It calculates the rate of success by including the improvements achieved in previous projects. These have proven to be a reliable source for the calculation of improvement opportunities.

You can access SAP’s UX Calculator free of charge. All you need to do is go to the homepage and register (you can find the UX Calculator here). After entering just a couple of values, you will get a first impression of how you can improve your interfaces and cut costs in the process.

Please consider SAP’s official note: The UX Calculator results are an estimate only. Actual results and costs may vary and are contingent on a number of other factors that cannot be quantified by the tool. The tool is provided “as is” without warranties or guarantees of any kind, express or implied, and SAP shall under no circumstances be liable for any damages that may arise from the use of this tool.

Would you like to learn more about SAP Fiori and the opportunities it presents for you? Contact us today! We are looking forward to your call.

Author
Gerald Iakobinyi-Pich Solution Architect
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: cluj@inspiricon.de
SAP S/4HANA

To the top with SAP S/4HANA – how to conduct business in real-time

The economic world is getting more and more complex and connected. Core processes have to be integrated, simplified and made available in real-time in order for you to be ready for the challenges of digitalization. SAP S/4HANA offers all possibilities to simplify business processes in a digital world. There is an immediate added value at the same time as maximum usability. The application is based on the In-Memory platform SAP HANA. Together with SAP Fiori, it allows a user experience that you can usually find in the end-user world only.

There are two options available for SAP S/4HANA: cloud and on-premise. Integrate your business processes and departments and board a digitalized world – you can create a real added-value with S/4HANA.

Read more about SAP HANA in our blog.

Interested in SAP Fiori? Find more on our website and in our blog

SAP S/4HANA – the next generation

SAP S/4HANA is a In-Memory-ERP-Suite which supports the different technologies of the digital world. Among these are

  • Big Data
  • Mobile
  • Real-time analyses
  • IoT (Internet of Things)
  • as well as solutions of other software providers and business networks.

The ERP-Suite gives you as a business user insights that can be implemented at once. All integrated solution proposals go far beyond simple automation.

S/4HANA offers you several fundamental advantages

  • With S/4HANA you can benefit from a powerful In-Memory platform. It special architecture allows the simultaneous implementation of analytical processes (OLAP) and transactional processes (OLTP) – in real-time.
  • The data model has been facilitated radically. Aggregated and redundant data layers cease. You benefit from maximum flexibility and at the same time reduction memory space as well as a multiple increase in performance.
  • Scope and complexity of the coding have been tremendously reduced with S/4HANA. Data base building reduces data scope up to 90 percent. This improves speed of analyses as well as performance of transactions and simulations – in real-time.
  • The intuitive user interface of SAP Fiori visualizes all sources which are brought together in real-time. This also applies for mobile scenarios – so that usability is guaranteed for all devices. SAP Fiori offers a personalized, role-based and uniform user guidance.
  • SAP S/4HANA paves the way for optimized and innovative core business processes. Among these are procurement, production, stock management, sales and logistics, quality control as well as finance.
  • Furthermore it offers you the flexibility needed in order to transform your business processes.

Do you have any questions concerning SAP S/4HANA? We are looking forward to your call or your message.

 

Author
Jörg Waldenmayer Lead Consultant
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: info@inspiricon.de
SAL Fiori query runner

How to generate reports at the touch of a button with the BW Query Runner

Author: Andrei Ghiura, SAP Consultant, Cross Technology Team

In this blog post, we will talk about the third and at the moment, the final SAP Fiori application in our Inspiricon Toolbox: the BW Query Runner. It is an application that allows the user to run a certain list of queries defined in BEx Query Designer. It mimics the functionality of the standard analyser add-in from Microsoft Excel but with a mobile approach.

You can read more about our other two apps – Manage Users and Time Tracker – in our blog.

The motivation

First of all, we have encountered an issue with viewing BI data on the go. This does not apply to big sets of data, reporting or any other comprehensive BI processes. The BW Query Runner is designed to suit user who need access to data in an intuitive format, in a mobile environment and with minimum effort.

The target

With this Fiori app we hope to mainly touch the group of people that want to have access to business data for their company while having the freedom they need in order to operate.

The solution

Our Inspiricon Toolbox component, the BW Query Runner, is a solution we have come up with as a kind of “Swiss army knife” for our target users. Instead of designing an application for each of their needs, we wanted to offer them a taste of what this new technology can do – so we have created this new Fiori application. After a couple of custom tailored apps for certain needs that were described in this blog beforehand, we settled on an application that was able to substitute, in part, all of them.

The technical side

First of all, we made use of the SAP Gateway component in order to transform the BI queries into consumable OData services that were going to be used in the BW Query Runner. This allowed us to create a seamless experience for any technical support that wanted to maintain our toolbox. Adding a new query to the list available in the application can be done in a few clicks (see FIG.1).

FIG.1: Adding a new query

FIG.1: Adding a new query

The functional side

Our application has a suite of functions that are readily available to the end user to demonstrate the capabilities of the new technology as well as the Inspiricon experience in BI. Among these, we can recall as major ones:

  • Easy access to a list of predefined queries tailored to each user’s preferences and needs (FIG.2 AND FIG.3).
    FIG.2: Predefined queries

    FIG.2: Predefined queries

    FIG.3: Predefined queries

    FIG.3: Predefined queries

  • Custom selections in each query for always having the optimal experience for the best performance (FIG.4 and FIG.5).
    FIG.4: Custom selections

    FIG.4: Custom selections

    FIG.5: Custom selections

    FIG.5: Custom selections

  • Custom filters for fast viewing of the data you require (FIG.6).

    FIG.6: Custom filters

    FIG.6: Custom filters

This was a short introduction to our third addition in the Inspiricon Toolbox, the BW Query Runner.

You want to find out more? Please contact us directly or go to our website: http://en.inspiricon.de/sap-fiori/. You can also find a lot of information in our flyer on the Toolbox. We hope that you enjoyed it and will come back to find out more about our next application :)!

 

Author
Andrei GhiuraAssociate
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: cluj@inspiricon.de
SAP Fiori time tracker

Efficient time logging for your company with the Inspiricon Time Tracker

Author: Ana-Maria Pop, Teamlead Cross Technology

Today we will talk about our second application from the Inspiricon Toolbox, Time Tracker. This application helps to manage the employees’ working time within an organization.

Why did we choose to develop this application?

There are companies, especially the ones which work with SAP, that have solutions for time tracking based on excel. We saw that Microsoft Excel is considered by many to be the most commonly used BI tool in the world, but from our point of view it is not efficient enough. That is why we have found another way to access and analyse SAP BW data, through SAP Fiori and OData service.

The backing of the Inspiricon Time Tracker application is assured by a Planning Cube. Data transfer from the backend is made possible through an Input-Ready Query which is consumed as OData in the Fiori application.

How does the application work?

We will explain the workflow based on an example:

Let’s assume that you are an employee in X Company – a company which is using a SAP ERP and they will always need BI tools for visualization, reporting and so on. Every day you work on a project and on a specific task of this project, but you need to keep track of all this.

How do you do that?

With Time Tracker! A cross browser application which allows you to stock all this information. You can do it from anywhere and from any device: PC, laptop, tablet or smartphone. It is all real time, so if your manager needs your timesheet right now in this moment, he will just have to login to the application and it’s all there. Or if you have made a mistake in your logged work, it’s only a matter of seconds to change it.

Functionality, scope and workflow of Time Tracker

The functionality is quite simple and straight-forward. Usually in SAP Fiori applications, it is a best practice to split the functionality as much as you can. For example, in the timeline case, there will be at least three applications:

  1. one for login the work,
  2. one for planning
  3. and one for request approval.

Time Tracker is the one to login the work.

Basically, you have just one view with all functionalities (FIG.1):

FIG.1: View with all functionalities

FIG.1: View with all functionalities

  1. Filter by date: The data binding between Calendar Date Interval component and the OData received was a bit tricky (because of the ACALLDAY). But we don’t give up easily! We created the mock-up with this component and the result was a success. With this component, you are able to choose a specific date or an interval to visualize your work.
  2. Have an overview off all logs: this is table component with search and sort as additional functions (FIG.2).

    FIG.2: Overview off all logs

    FIG.2: Overview off all logs

  3. Log your work: you just have to click the Log Work button and a dialog with a submit form will open. Choose the project, the task, add a description of what you did, the number of hours, click Log and you are done (FIG.3 and FIG.4).
    FIG.3: FIG.2: Overview off all logs

    FIG.3: Log Work (Desktop)

    FIG.4: Log Work (mobile)

    FIG.4: Log Work (mobile)

  4. Update each logged work: is also a dialog which will open when clicking an entry from the table – here you can adjust the number of hours (FIG.5).

    FIG.5: Update logged work

    FIG.5: Update logged work

And this is the scope and the workflow of our second application. In the future we plan to implement the planning and the request approval applications as well.

All good things go by three

Next week we will present our third app to you– BEx Query Analyzer. Maybe a bit more technical application but also very very interesting! 🙂

You missed the article about our first application, Manage User? No worries, you can always read it on our blog.

Find more information about the Inspiricon Toolbox on our website and in our handout SAP BI meets SAP Fiori.

 

Author
Ana-Maria Pop Lead Consultant
Phone: +49 (0) 7031 714 660 0
Email: cluj@inspiricon.de