Boost Business Performance at SAPPHIRE NOW

Your business is a living thing, made up of interdependent systems that must work together to carry out crucial processes. Its an arrangement of moving components that operate and interact to deliver results.  Therefore it is vital that all the departments functions flawlessly so that your business can grow.

For this to work out, the first step is to have the right technologies in place to automate repetitive business processes, reduce human error, support communication and collaboration, and monitor performance.

Benefits can be felt in all hierarchy levels.  Top level executives will be able to examine the overall health and direction of the company. Department leaders such as the CFO will e able to tap into analytics and performance management tools in order to get visibility into performance, support compliance and reduce risk. HR can streamline the administration tasks and focus on aligning talent to business goals. Sales and Marketing can understand what customers want and deliver products and promotions accordingly. Operations can be optimized by improving planning and stock replenishment to function more profitably.

Do you want to know more about what SAP solutions could do for your company? If you are at SAPPHIRE NOW don´t miss the opportunity to network with your peers in similar industries and find out how they've used SAP solutions to solve common business challenges in this last day of the event. Visit the interactive campus to get to know all the latest innovations from across the SAP portfolio. Learn more about top solutions from SAP HANA and see why this is the fastest growing product in SAP, business analytics, mobile solutions, the cloud, to database and technology.

If you don´t have the chance to be at SAPPHIRE NOW Madrid this year, contact us at info@clariba.com and we will be more than happy to go through the latest SAP innovations with you, ans share some of our successes, for example on the SAP HANA proof of concept we are developing for a major Telco player in MENA, or the implementation of a BI mobility solutions called MyBI Mobile, which enables you to bring all your SAP Business Intelligence content to mobile devices (including Xcelsius on iPad). You can also visit the SAPPHIRE NOW LIVE website to watch live presentations and panels happening on this last day of SAPPHIRE NOW, and also view the replays of what happened on the previous days.

Cloud computing - the SME favorite at SAPPHIRE NOW

Responding quickly to change is not just a competitive advantage anymore, its a survival requirement. A very common assumption is that small businesses are often more agile than large enterprises. However, small companies can find themselves stuck in the middle of long, resource-consuming IT projects when they try to put new solution s in place to support their growth. When you don´t have a vast specialized IT team for implementation or unlimited hardware and software budgets, every purchase has to be carefully considered. Although Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) can be benefiting to companies of all sizes, the advantages for the small business is particularly appealing. It comes as no surprise that cloud computing adoption among SMEs is booming. SaaS is available on a subscription basis, and it allows enterprise-level applications to be deployed quickly and without  the need for hardware capital or on-premise licenses, and because of the concept of the Cloud, you can tap into economies of scale. The best part is that you can scale up or down to tend to your needs and upgrades and patches don't have to be done by your IT staff, which can now focus on vital IT business strategy. SAP’s OnDemand applications can be delivered in as little as 48 hours, so you can have it up and running in weeks.

At SAPPHIRE NOW’s Cloud Campus you can discover SAP’s cloud solutions, no matter what aspect of your business you are looking to attend to. SAP’s cloud solutions enable you to be competitive even when it comes to bigger corporations, as you will have access to the same technologies they do, and will get the insight you need to make fast, information-based decisions to take you to the head of the game.

At Clariba we understand the need that companies have for rapid solutions to their business problems, and we have been working with pre-packaged solutions as well as on demand, as this makes top notch BI solutions easily accessible, no matter the size of your cpmpany. If you cannot come to SAPPHIRE NOW Madrid this year, contact us at info@clariba.com for more information on how we can help your company become more competitive. You can also check the SAPPHIRE NOW Cloud Blog for news and updates on this topic. You can also follow the Industry blog and the Services blog for more specific news.

Find out the benefits of Enterprise Mobility at SAPPHIRE NOW

Old news: we all know mobile devices nowadays mean a lot more than just a device for making calls. People are using their smart phones and tablets as a way to research, buy, sell, connect with people, well interact in a series of ways in their personal life. This phenomenon is now starting to move to the workplace too. In fact, mobiles are  becoming the preferred way of consuming business information regardless if they are outside or inside the office. Not only companies are seeing a boost in productivity, but they are also realizing that mobile innovation is helping companies streamline business processes due to up-to-the-minute, highly detailed information that enables decisive action in situations where this was impossible previously. Workers can make fact-based decisions, avoiding problems or seizing opportunities in the moment, in ways that traditional desktop applications simply can’t support.

All is well... well... there´s a challenge: to deliver a secure, joined-up mobile strategy that can make “anytime, anywhere” a reality for your business processes. This must also take into account the variety of mobile devices and operating systems in concurrent use, and most of all, ensure company data is secure at all times.

At SAPPHIRE NOW’s dedicated Mobile Campus you can find everything you need to start from SAP´s business-grade apps for management, sales, service, transaction and much more on the go. You will also see SAP’s device management solution, development platform and mobile strategy so that you get an idea of how the whole picture would look. But it´s not about seeing, you will also be able to test these technologies hands-on. This is a great opportunity to get to grips with all the possibilities that mobile solutions can bring to your business: increase productive, improve service, accelerate processes and bring greater flexibility to employees and customers, such as the Standard Bank South Africa has done by unwiring their customers.

If your not at SAPPHIRE NOW this week, you can contact Clariba at info@clariba.com to meet with one of our consultants to learn more about enterprise mobility solutions, such as the one we are developing for Arab Business Machines, which will deliver mobile BI on their iPads for insights no matter where employees are. You can also follow the SAPPHIRE NOW Mobile Blog to follow what is happening at the event and get more information around Enterprise Mobility.

 

 

Evolve from spreadsheet analysis into innovative Business Analytics at SAPPHIRE NOW

Not long ago, most small and medium-sized companies did data analysis with spreadsheets as more sophisticated business intelligence systems were not affordable. When you are using spreadsheets to get the information you need, when you need it, you are in a daily battle and on top of that, the data is almost always historical, so you are planning for tomorrow based on a picture from the past, not the present. In the present days data grows exponentially in terms of volume, variety of sources and the velocity at which it’s generated – which means that manual spreadsheet analysis can´t give you what you need fast enough. When decisions need to be made in a timely manner due to the fast pace of business you have little margin for error.

However, recent innovations in analytics are making business insight accessible, real-time, predictive, visual, mobile, social and affordable, take the example of The Carbon Disclosure Project. If you want to know more and you happen to be at SAPPHIRE NOW Madrid this year, a visit to the dedicated Analytics Campus is the ideal place to start. Here you have SAP experts can show you how analytics can drive faster, better informed decision-making at every level of your business. You will see how analytical tools designed for non-technical users allow you to intuitively uncover trends, patterns, warnings, opportunities within your data, so you can predict and adapt to changing conditions ahead of your competitors. For example, you will be able to ask the same questions Bill McDermott asked at SAPPHIRE NOW Orlando, "How will we grow? How will we innovate more powerfully, more competitively? How will we reinvent our business models and our business networks?

This is a great opportunity to find out more about the latest developments in analytics, get face-to-face advice from the experts, and swap experiences and best practices with your peers that you can bring back to create repeatable successes in your own business and help you answer these questions.

If you are not at SHAPPHIRE NOW, don´t worry, Clariba is more than happy to meet you and demonstrate the power of the SAP Business Analytics portfolio. As a Business Intelligence (BI) expert, we have the capabilities to consolidate data from your spreadsheets or any database so you can get a single source of the truth to draw BI insight from with SAP BusinessObjects BI stack, such as reports and dashboards. Contact us at info@clariba.com to schedule a live demo. Also, if you are not at SAPPHIRE NOW but would like to know what has been happening, go to SAPPHIRE NOW LIVE, or if you are  interested in business analytics you can check the SAPPHIRE NOW Analytics Blog.

Developing an Advanced Auditing Strategy Using Data Services

How often do you ask yourself: why isn't there anything similar to the audit universe that comes as a default feature in the SAP Business intelligence platform 4.0 for auditing ETL? How useful it would be to have an audit table in order to save useful information regarding Data Services ran jobs? All of us know that you can audit some things via DSCM (Data Services Management Console), but can you do it at the row level? In order to solve all of these questions, this article explains a workaround for auditing the ETL at the row level and make your life easier when errors occur, when you need an analysis or if you are just tracking data.

The idea is quite simple and the main part of it consists of a table (Load_Audit_Table). This table contains a number of columns that include a unique identifier called “Load_Key” and some other columns containing:

  • the name of the user who ran the job
  • the name of the job ran
  • the starting date and time
  • the ending date and time
  • a Boolean field to indentify if the job finished in error or not
  • the error message
  • the log file location description.

Of course you can add more columns depending on your needs.

The other important part of the solution is a column named “Load_Key” and that column should appear in all the tables we use in the ETL (ODS tables, FACT tables, and so on).

The purpose of this solution is to give us the possibility not just to easily identify an error but also to audit at the row level. This means we can also analyze or track data which has been loaded in a certain date during the whole process because all the rows in all the tables that had loaded on this date will have the same “Load_key”.  Have a look at the example below.

Every time the ETL runs, a new load Key in generated automatically and is loaded into the Load_Audit_Table and in all the other system tables if there are no errors.

Now that we understand how it works and the value of this implementation, we need to explain how to develop this solution in terms of objects, codes, etc.

In the image below you find the job structure developed to implement the auditing method:

As you can see in the image the job is ALWAYS composed by two workflows, one at the beginning called “Audit_start” and a second one at the end of the job called “Audit_End”.

The job that we want to audit is located in the middle, in our example we are auditing the workflow that loads the dimension tables. Moreover, the main workflow should be surrounded by the “Try” and “Catch” blocks in order to get the error information at the end of the job in case of failure.

Now let see what is inside of each one of these blocks in order to understand how the auditing system works.

In the image below we are showing what is inside the first block, “Audit_Start”.

In this step we generate the unique identifier for the audit table. It is very simple: in the plain code block we add a SQL function which extracts the last key from the Audit table plus 1.

Sql(‘Datawharehouse’,’select max(load_key) +1 from audit_table)

Then, inside the data flow, we generate a new row in order to add the new key in the audit table.

The next block is the Try, but this block cannot be modified because it is only a block that gives a flag to record error information. The only thing we need to do is add it into the job and create the links.

After the main job, the Catch block is the following. In this case, Catch is editable - by opening the block with a double-click we can add objects into it.

In the image below you can see what is inside the Catch block.

First of all, we have the Audit_End workflow, and you might ask why? The reason is because when an error occurs, the job finishes in the Catch block. This means that if we had not got the Audit_end block inside the Catch block, every time there was an error, we would have been missing important information.

Then a plain code block comes; inside it there is a code that provides us all the error information and the code that allows us to update the new row created for the new load_key.

sql('DataWarehouse','update load_audit set is_error='1', error_num=' || error_number() || ', error_desc='' 

|| error_message() || ''where load_Key='|| $G_Job_Load_key);

Finally, the last step is adding the “Audit_End” block which provides us with the date and time when the job is finished. To do this we write a SQL code that adds this information to the Audit_table.

sql('DataWarehouse','update load_audit set job_end_date=sysdate where load_Key='|| $G_Job_Load_key);

Now you have implemented the audit method developed by Clariba consultants! In addition, you can use this auditing table to shoot an email when an error occurs. You can set it up by reading the column “Is_Error” and if the record is “1” send an email to the BO administrator with the error information saved in the same table.

We hope this will be of use to you. If you have any questions or observations, please leave a comment below.

 

Business Intelligence - helping your company plan for the future

If your company has been able to grow despite the tough economic times, you must be doing things right. However, growth can be challenging if you don’t have the right base set up to support it. The more you grow, the more activities you have, it looks like you can´t even go through all your emails anymore, let alone to think about whether your software meets your business needs or not. However, in order to support your expansion and reach the full potential of your business, you will need up-to-date information to support your decisions. You’ll need to be able to monitor and manage every aspect of your company, so that every part performs at its best in order for the whole to continue growing.

SAP Business Intelligence Solutions provide fact-based, quality information to help you identify and implement business controls. On top of that, you can also answer your  employee´s requests for mobility, as all the insight can be made available on mobile devices so they can always be in touch with the latest information available, no matter where they are. You will also have the option to adapt your solution as your business grows, no matter if you’re handling 100 transactions, or 1 million transactions.

At Clariba we can offer solutions for small companies (such as a finance and a sales dashboard we have developed to go on top of SAP Business One, the ERP for SMEs) all the way up to large enterprises (such as the SAP HANA proof of concept we are delivering for one of our biggest telco clients). No matter how big or small you are, you will need to streamline your processes and be able to make fact-based decisions to drive your business forward, and business intelligence can help you do just that.

Take Doha Bank for example, a SAP business intelligence solution developed by Clariba allowed them to be the first to respond to new reporting regulations and on top of that reduce their time to produce internal financial reports in 80%.

Although most of us know that business intelligence plays an important role on planning for the future, researches point out that only 27% of companies do a better job of using information than their competitors and 74% of companies have difficulty defining business requirements (source). Would your company benefit from SAP Business Intelligence Solutions? Do you want to know how we can help you pave the way to a top-notch BI environment?

Contact us on info@clariba.com or leave a comment below.

Clariba is the first Showcased Partner in the MyBI Mobile Global Environment

Until the 15th of November Clariba is the featured Partner in the Exxova Global Partner Showcase. This is a great opportunity for Clariba to demonstrate business intelligence data visualizations capabilities which can be seen by every one of the 15,000 users who already downloaded the MyBI Mobile app from the App Store to-date, and by the new users downloading the app from now on. When a user logs into the MyBI Mobile demo environment, they will see the Clariba Logo which will than direct the user to the Clariba data visualization content available.

 

 

 

"We are very excited to be the first showcased partner in the MyBI Mobile demo environment" says Marc Haberland, managing director of Clariba, "this is great quality exposure for our brand, and a unique opportunity to show users worldwide our expertise in business intelligence. Our showcased content comes from real case scenarios of business challenges our BI consultants have solved, this gives users a clearer idea of what Clariba can do with their data using industry best practices and years of experience in BI".

This is also the perfect way to show the power of MyBI Mobile to display diverse content on mobile devices. "A solution that makes BI mobility possible, no matter what SAP BusinessObjects content you need to mobilize (Xcelsius/Dashboard Design, Crystal Reports, Explorer, Web Intelligence or Visual Intelligence) sure deserves a second look, specially when installation can be done in a matter of days, with no content re-writing or re-platforming. This is the reason Clariba believes in the solution and has become the value-added reseller of MyBI in the Middle East region" finishes Marc.

Mark Hillam, President of Business intelligence for Exxova mentioned on the Exxova blog that "working closely with our partners it was evident, that as a platform, MyBI had assembled some of the best talent across the globe. Great business intelligence is an art and we are thrilled that MyBI acts as a medium for the thousands of MyBI users to experience the best of business intelligence “done right”.

If you wish to see the Clariba content on the MyBI demo environment Click Here to download MyBI Mobile from the App Store. If you would like to request a demo to get more information book a meeting with one of our expert BI consultants by Contacting Us.

 

 

Great results at GITEX for Clariba and partner Exxova

"We were thrilled to present MyBI Mobile on the SAP booth at GITEX in Dubai"  says Marc Haberland, managing director of Clariba.

 

Clariba and Exxova joined forces to bring the MyBI mobile solution to the Middle East at the 2012 GITEX technology week. The featured solution - MyBI Mobile - allows companies to bring their SAP BusinessObjects content to mobile devices quickly and securely. As the theme of mobility gathers more and more interest and starts appearing as one of the top priorities for fast-paced organizations, needless to say Clariba and Exxova had a busy week at GITEX.

Marc Haberland, managing director of Clariba, says "it was a great experience for Clariba and Exxova to be together at GITEX and present not only the MyBI mobile solution,  but also the partnership between our two companies in the ME region. We are glad with the results from the event and we hope this was the first of many joint efforts between Clariba and Exxova. We strongly feels that MyBI Mobile has great potential, and mobility is what our business intelligence clients are asking for".

 

David, VP Exxova EMEA, comments that “I came away very happy with the overall result.  Spread over 7 halls, the show is a very large technology event with different vendors selling everything from printer cartridges to SAN’s.   Visitor diversity came from a much wider geographic area than I had assumed – some from as far away as Turkey, Libya, Pakistan, Sudan and Nigeria – and that’s only counting the visitors to our booth!"

The SAP stand was well attended and visitors had the chance to watch expert presentations on the SAP portfolio of products, and also partner solutions such as MyBi Mobile, which was showcased by David Monks. Attendants were really keen on getting their hands on the iPad and playing with the Clariba developed dashboards displayed in the application.

Clariba and Exxova would like to thank all the visitors that came by the booth for a hands on demo of MyBI Mobile. If you happen to be one of them, follow our newsfeed to find out the winner of the draw for 10 user licenses of MyBI Cloud for one year.

 

Big Data & SAP HANA...What are those again?

After the first year of SAP HANA and the constant debate around Big Data, its almost certain that you heard about it once or twice already - but are you 100% clear of what Big Data is and what SAP HANA can do for your company?

Big Data
Big Data

Boosted by the evolution of mobility and advances in technology, we see new data sources emerge continually. It is forecasted that  by 2020, 50 billion Internet-enabled devices will be connected to the Web generating  44 times more data annually than we did three years ago.

This growth can be the fortune or the ruin for a company. This depends on their knowledge of Big Data and whether they see it as a challenge or opportunity.

In order to understand what can be denominated BigData, there are a number of factors to be taken into account. Recently, Adrian Simpson and Timo Elliott talked about Big Data and the ‘Four Vs’ – which stand for volume, velocity, variety and validity (see the studio discussion What is Big Data here).

There has been some discussion generated after this, with  disagreement about how many Vs there are. While some defend only three (volume, velocity and variety), others say there are more, such as veracity, virility and viscosity. As an example, read the blog  Beyond the Three V’s of Big Data and make up your own opinion about the topic.

The fact of the matter is that Big Data is already a reality. In order to stay competitive, companies will have to be able to analyze their growing data effectively, allowing for timely response and proactive actions taken after spotting trends.

SAP HANA allows companies to do just that. SAP HANA is a modern platform for real-time analytics and applications. It enables organizations to analyze business operations based on a large volume and variety of detailed data in real time. The main benefits of SAP HANA include:

  • 3600x faster reporting speed
  • Make business decisions in real-time
  • Accelerate business performance
  • Unlocks new insights
  • Increase productivity and efficiency

And this is just the tip of the iceberg, SAP HANA is one of the fastest growing products SAP has launched, and the explanation for this exponential growth can be found on ten reasons customers choose SAP HANA Clariba is working with SAP HANA in conjunction with SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence solutions so that companies can work with real-time BI information and be on top of changing business realities as events unfold. As the first proofs-of-concept succeed   at our clients, we realize that this combination of Big Data analysis and market-leading business intelligence from SAP BusinessObjects is the way forward to unleash the insights from a company´s databases.

If you want to know more, check the  SAP HANA Blog or follow some of the top 50 Big Data Twitter Influencers.

Have any doubts or want to know more about the combination of Business Intelligence and Big Data with SAP HANA? Leave a comment below.

Clariba and Exxova bring you Exxova´s MyBI Mobile at GITEX 2012

Visit Clariba and Exxova at GITEX Technology Week 2012, check out Exxova MyBI in action and enter the drawing for a 10-user implementation of Exxova MyBI Cloud!

Clariba and Exxova will be present at the SAP stand at the GITEX TECHNOLOGY WEEK 2012, the #1 technology fair in the MEASA region, and considered by many, as one of the top information and communications technology (ICT) trade fairs in the world. Over 138,000 ICT Professionals, 18,000 C-level executives and more than 80% of the top ICT brands worldwide are expected in GITEX 2012, which will run from 14 to 18 October at the Dubai World Trade Center.

As GITEX continues to uncover the latest IT trends, like the shift to enterprise mobility accelerating at a rapid rate on upcoming years, it is unsurprising that we find the “Mobile, Apps & Content” area at the exhibition floor. This is where you will find the SAP Stand. With Mobility at the core of their innovation agenda, and heavy investments to stay at the forefront of the enterprise mobility market, SAP will be present at GITEX , showcasing its leading solutions in mobile device management, mobile applications and development platform among others.

The SAP stand will also feature partners such as Clariba ─ an expert provider of business intelligence solutions and a specialist in SAP BusinessObjects working with Exxova Worldwide ─ global supplier of MyBI Mobile.

The two companies have partnered to bring Exxova's MyBI Mobile™ solution to the EMEA region. MyBI Mobile is a business intelligence mobility solution, which allows users to instantly access enterprise-wide BI content from mobile devices. It provides business leaders with real-time mission-critical data whether in the boardroom or airport terminal. All existing content is available without the need for rewriting or re-platforming so you can enjoy speed, flexibility, application breadth and simplicity.

  • Meet us at our joint pod within the SAP stand in Hall 6, Stand #57 for a hands-on demo of Exxova´s MyBI Mobile and for insights on enterprise mobility and information management from Marc Haberland and David Monks.
  • We also invite you to attend our Expert Presentation ─ Information at the Point of Decision with MyBI Mobile ─ at the Seminar Area of the SAP stand, on the 17th October at 12:30, presented by David Monks.
  • By visiting us you will be able to enter the drawing for a full implementation of Exxova MyBI Cloud for 1 year for 10 users (worth $5,000!).

“We are excited to go to GITEX; it has become one of the most important ICT events of the year. As a BI services and solutions provider, Clariba believes that it’s important for the entire SAP BusinessObjects BI portfolio to run on multiple mobile platforms," says Marc Haberland, Managing Director of Clariba. “Exxova’s MyBI Mobile solution is a very cost-effective, easy-to-use option to deliver that without compromising data security, and we think this is a great fit with the GITEX technology week, where attendants come to see innovative solutions that can help improve their work processes” Marc comments.

David Monks, Vice President of Exxova EMEA, complements, saying that “the opportunity to showcase our innovative MyBI Mobile solution delivering broad support of Business Intelligence across the SAP  BusinessObjects family and beyond in conjunction with our partners Clariba and SAP is an exciting event for Exxova. We look forward  to showing how easy it is to deliver mobile BI using Dashboards Design (Xcelsius) Flash-based dashboards, Webi Reports, Crystal and even Explorer onto mobile devices like the iPad without any re-engineering whatsoever and with only 1 or 2 days installation time”.

______________________________________________________________ SAP, Clariba & Exxova can be found in Hall 6, Stand #57 – Mobile, Apps & Content area

For more information on GITEX Technology week visit www.gitex.com

For more information on Clariba visit www.clariba.com or contact us at info@clariba.com.

For more information on Exxova Worldwide visit www.exxova.com or contact us at gitex2012@exxova.com.