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BO Rules. SAP Analytics Drool.

My youngest daughter owns a T-shirt, a gift from her aunt, that is emblazoned with the phrase “Girls Rule. Boys Drool”.

As I prepare to attend this year’s SAP Sapphire and ASUG Annual Conference, I am thinking about wearing a T-shirt that reads “BO Rules. SAP Analytics Drool”.  I’m not sure that anyone would notice.

Three years of SAP heavily promoting its new SAP Analytics tools, has made almost no impact in the BI marketplace. Most people outside of the SAP world have never heard of Lumira and Visual Design Studio and SAP is rarely considered for any type of serious predictive analysis solution.

During those same three years, BusinessObjects has continued to dominate as the most widely used Business Intelligence suite in the world and it has maintained this position with almost no promotion from SAP. To be honest, it does not need the promotion because the product speaks for itself through the millions of end-users who benefit from it every day.

The latest BI 4.1 release is packed with new functionality that guarantees it will keep its popularity for many years to come. From the new universe designer (IDT) with multi-source capability, the new visual graphics and Google Map integration options in Web Intelligence to the HTML5 mobile and universe connection features of BusinessObjects Dashboards (Xcelsius) , the BusinessObjects suite is at the top of its game.

Why am I blogging about this?

Because, despite this, I still come across confused BusinessObjects customers who think that the new SAP Analytics tools are going to replace the BusinessObjects suite because their SAP Account Manager told them this. I can see how it can be confusing when the SAP messaging is very unclear and keeps changing as they struggle to find new ways to position and sell their new Analytics tools.

The truth is that the new SAP Analytics tools were developed to run on HANA (SAP’s multi-million dollar in-memory database) and not to be the next generation Business Intelligence suite for the masses. Anyone who takes a look at the tools and wants to run them in an enterprise environment will realize very quickly they need a HANA. This should come as no surprise to anyone in the SAP world as SAP has made it clear they want everything SAP to be on HANA.

The entire SAP Sales and Marketing teams are trained to sell HANA and the new Analytics tools which they have likened to a Tesla.  In the meantime, they liken BusinessObjects to a Porsche. The problem is that when they try to sell their Tesla to their very happy and contented Porsche owners they resort to desperate tactics like telling them that on their future roadmap their Porsche’s will be replaced by these Tesla’s so they better buy one now!

The bottom line is that the new SAP Analytics tools are nowhere close to the functionality, robustness and capabilities of BusinessObjects and they have years to go before they get there by which time BusinessObjects will be even further ahead.

I’m looking forward to Sapphire even though I don’t have a t-shirt made.  I am sure we will hear a lot more about the new SAP Analytics strategies but for those who are interested in finding out what’s happening today in the BusinessObjects world be sure to check out the following community session  at the ASUG Hub (session ID is CYC2423)

Wednesday, May 6, 2015 Time: 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Pod: 2

Riding the Big BusinessObjects Resurgence Wave

BO Rules – OK!

About Paul

Paul Grill started his career in Information Technology in the U.K. in 1978, as an Executive Data Processing Trainee for Honeywell. More than thirty years later, he still has a voracious appetite for learning as Information Technology continues to advance at an ever accelerating pace. He was first introduced to the world of Business Intelligence in 1991, in France, when he saw a demonstration of an early version of BusinessObjects on Windows 2.1. He returned to the U.S. to rave about this phenomenal product, but it was many years before BusinessObjects made it into the mainstream. Paul founded InfoSol in 1997, and made Business Intelligence one of the key solutions offered by the company. Today, InfoSol is a leading SAP BusinessObjects solutions partner, known for its expert consulting, education and innovative add-on solutions. Paul is well known within the SAP BusinessObjects community for his extensive knowledge of Business Intelligence, and he has lectured and written many articles on the subject. Paul enjoys writing, running and coaching kids soccer, and is passionate about Ancient Egyptology.

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