Similar to last year, we have enjoyed TechEd 2021 from our own home. This accessibility, flexibility and possibilities to consume all the content provided by SAP is very impressive. In this blog, I would like to share my personal highlights from SAP TechEd 2021:
With the onwards trend going from on-premise to the cloud (see image below), a much awaited functionality is introduced to support the move from BW 7.3+ on-premise to SAP Data Warehouse Cloud. My colleague Ronald already wrote a blog about this new functionality so no need to repeat, I do suggest also to watch this SAP Youtube video if interested in a live demo of how BW bridge looks like!
When looking at the SAP DWC Roadmap also a lot of BW Bridge features are interesting, I would like to discuss some:
- “Support for custom code in the ABAP programming language” (planned for Q1 2022) – this feature states that ABAP still can be used (see image below, in BW bridge section) which is – with the large amount of ABAP code present in the BW environment – a way to still move to the cloud without first having to convert ABAP to SQL. This provides good news for customers since the move to the cloud can already take place without first having to replace all ABAP.
- “Automatic conversion of business warehouse queries” (planned for Q2 2022) – as we have learned in the BW bridge sessions (and also visible in the image above, see in “SAP BW bridge section”), DWC will not be able to support BW queries but instead virtual tables will be created for example based on Composite Providers. BW queries are not supported since no OLAP functionality is supported in the BW bridge which therefore implies BW queries should be rebuild in DWC as SQL views. Automatic conversion of BW queries would be very helpful to avoid re-building all logic already in the BW queries.
For SAP BI backend it is interesting to follow the changes made to SAP Data Warehouse Cloud, some functionalities that caught my attention:
- Persisting data – A feature already part of DWC a few months but definitely worth mentioning here (see image below). My colleague Tim wrote a blog about this, especially in a scenario where multiple sources are in play persisting your data might be valuable. Now that replication is possible, it’s also important monitor these jobs. A first step to monitor the jobs running on the DWC environment is to active the monitoring statistics in the DWC environment which will lead to saving the statistics to specific tables in DWC. If you would like to have more detail about monitoring the DWC environment and a sample DWH monitoring dashboard created for SAC, please view this blog.
- Connections – integration of SAP DWC with numerous other SAP products already is possible, however as the image below shows there are still some areas to work on for example SAP Integrated Business Planning (IBP).
On the SAC side however, there have been changes made already to support IBP by extending the already available Account-based model in SAC with a new Key Figure-based model (see image below for model difference, and an example use case by colleague Xavier). Reason for this extension is to support the modelling being done at SAP IBP. With the preparation being done at the side of SAC, extending the connections towards DWC with SAP IBP is the following step for full integration.
- Modelling capabilities – multiple modelling opportunities in DWC allow developers to follow their preferred method (see image below). Besides the obvious advantages, it could be confusing having multiple modelling methods being applied in one environment, having guidelines therefore is going to be crucial. Regarding the “Business Modelling”, there could be doubts whether a business person would be interested and/or skilled to perform modelling.
In previous TechEd events, we were used to nice sightseeing during the event. However, having all content of the TechEd available from your own comfortable chair also has its advantages ?. Besides the opportunity to play sessions on demand, TechEd 2021 offered the possibility to literally follow sessions day and night. This obviously aims to also let other time zones enjoy the TechEd but did also offer people that could not catch sleep the chance to still enjoy sessions during the night!
Last but not least, if customers would like to get acquainted with SAP products, it is good news that the SAP Business Technology Platform now has a free tier model. This allows customers to work with SAP products not yet deployed in their environment but that they might be interested in.
Also, if there are enthusiastic individuals thinking of achieving SAP certification(s) during the short and cold days SAP has some discount for you to enjoy! Please go to the SAP Learning page if you are interested.