Should you run SAP BW on HANA? The short answer is “yes, but…” As with so many aspects of ERP, there’s more to the question than you might imagine. If you are using SAP Business Warehouse (BW) now, you will probably want to gain the performance advantages and other benefits of running the business warehouse on SAP HANA. SAP HANA offers an in-memory database that enables significant performance gains for data analysis in the BW. However, there is also the new BW/4HANA offering. You may want to go directly to that option.
What are the differences between SAP BW on HANA and BW/4HANA?
SAP BW on HANA puts your existing BW software onto the HANA database. In addition to a performance boost (e.g. reports in hours versus days), you get a few new capabilities. For example, you’re able to query current data rather than just looking at historical data. You can react more readily to trends and events affecting your supply chain and so forth.
SAP BW/4HANA takes BW further. It offers better integration, connecting with SAP Data HUB and Analytics Cloud. You can also integrate with other BI solutions. You get more flexibility, with options for different use cases and hosting arrangements.
Moving to SAP BW/4HANA also gets you out of using the familiar but increasingly obsolete SAPGUI Admin Workbench. Instead, you can to use SAP BW/4HANA Web Cockpit. This is based on the new SAP Fiori UX. You can then be more productive using the business warehouse.
Should I migrate directly to BW/4HANA?
One reason to migrate to BW/4HANA is that SAP has announced that it will end support for BW in the next few years. That said, it is still arguably not the best practice to jump directly from legacy BW to BW/4HANA. Rather, it makes more sense to migrate SAP BW to SAP BW on HANA. This approach limits project scope and keeps disruption to a minimum.
Migrating to SAP BW on HANA lets you keep the same application stack. This is a big plus. However, there may still yet be issues with migrating custom code. Code migration difficulties are likely to be less burdensome than they are migrating Suite to HANA, but they can still arise. You might also have some challenges moving the business logic you developed in legacy BW onto the HANA platform.
Working with a partner for BW on HANA migration
The right SAP partner can smooth the way for a successful BW migration. Some partners have proprietary migration tools that streamline the process and make the process fast and non-disruptive. A partner can also work with you to map out a broader data strategy, of which SAP BW on HANA is just one element. Working with a partner, you can make the decision about SAP BW on HANA as part of an overall plan to make the most of your data in your business.
Protera Technologies, Inc., a global Total IT Outsourcing Services Provider for SAP-centric organizations, was formed in 1998 to provide comprehensive end-to-end IT solutions for customers with SAP at the core of their IT resources. Protera Technologies has capitalized on its unbeatable experiences with SAP to evolve into a pioneer of end-to-end Total IT Outsourcing Global Solutions that cover all IT needs of an organization. As one of only a few SAP Global Partners providing Total IT Outsourcing Global Solutions, Protera Technologies provides truly comprehensive solutions to organizations of every size.