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First Look: SAP Advanced Analytics Update


SAP recently summarized their Advanced Analytic solution stack, putting all their various advanced analytic components into a single solution stack. SAP sees advanced analytics as important as being competitive in the future will rely on an ability to leverage all kinds of data. They see Big Data, the Internet of Things, the need for increasingly real-time responses and demand for predictive analytics combining with social, mobile, cloud and in-memory technology in new and interesting ways. They feel that most advanced analytics capabilities today are too complex, slow,  and costly: A lot of analytic professionals suffer from high latency in developing models, problems with model proliferation and a lack of visualization while talent shortages and usability shortcomings remain challenging. Business and IT meanwhile see fragmented solutions, a lack of data governance, organizational silos and not enough support for their decision making. SAP;’s vision for its advanced analytics then is to deliver smart, agile analytics into decision processes to deliver business impact. They want to make it:

  • Easy, bringing predictive analytics to a broader spectrum of users
  • Fast, reducing decision latency with advanced analytics
  • Efficient, operationalizing predictive and optimization models across the enterprise

From a user perspective, data scientists are less than 0.1% of all users while even business analysts are no more than 3%. The remaining 97% of business users and LOB want and need to leverage advanced analytics but don’t have the skills or appetite to build analytics. This means that a range of capabilities:

  • Custom analytics at the high-skilled end
  • Industry and business process analytics for business analysts and more advanced business users
  • Embedded analytics for business users of all types

SAPs solution stack for advanced analytics includes SAP Lumira, SAP InfiniteInsight (KXEN), SAP Predictive Analysis, SAP Predictive Analytics Library and R integration. All of this runs on SAP HANA with its search, rules, text mining and function libraries. SAP also has domain expertise in 25 industries across 11 lines of business and intends to deliver advanced analytics at the intersection of these LOBs and industries.

SAPs solution stack for advanced analytics then:

  • SAP Lumira is a desktop visualization, self-service BI tool that supports SAP HANA
  • SAP Predictive Analysis (reviewed here) extends Lumira to support data scientists in developing predictive analytic models, managing the model creation streams and visualizing the resulting models. These can include R scripts as necessary.
  • SAP InfiniteInsight (reviewed here), the KXEN product that SAP acquired last year, provides a fully automated process for advanced analytic model creation. It creates and manages 1000s of derived attributes, manages the meta data, builds the analytic dataset and applies an appropriate modeling technique. All automated.
  • SAP HANA has the Predictive Analysis Library for in-memory processing of 60+ of the most popular R algorithms.
  • The rest of R is integrated into SAP Predictive Analysis to provide access to all the R algorithms in addition.

You can get more information on the SAP Advanced Analytic solutions at www.sap.com/predictive and SAP is one of the vendors in our Decision Management Systems Platform Technology Report.


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