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How Does SAP BW/4HANA Work? Learn 4 Big Advantages

Understanding the SAP BW/4HANA and all the advantages at a glance.

4 advantages of SAP BW/4HANA. Mergers, acquisitions, and sell-offs are a reality in business today. These changes make keeping multiple operating systems for different parts of an organization impractical.

BW/4HANA is a simplified data warehouse built on SAP HANA that delivers improved performance and exceptional modeling capabilities. It also provides administrators, developers, and end users with the latest user interfaces.

Object-Oriented Modeling

Object-oriented modeling uses a database design approach that divides data into distinct “objects.” Each object has its own set of characteristics, known as attributes. Each object also has a set of methods. This object-oriented architecture helps in the design of SAP BW’s logical model, as well as enables data integration with other SAP systems and external databases.

SAP has evolved the BW product over time. First, it introduced a version called BW on HANA, which runs exclusively on the HANA in-memory database. Then, in 2017, it released the next generation, SAP BW/4HANA. This new version eliminated many legacy features and is more optimized for the columnar in-memory architecture of the SAP HANA database.

As a result, the data in SAP BW/4HANA is accessed far more efficiently than in older versions of SAP BW, as overviewed in SAPinsider. It requires fewer persistency objects (InfoObjects), reducing data loads. Additionally, eliminating business-logic complexity and lookups in InfoObjects frees up memory, allowing for more effective use of RAM.

Additionally, the simplified architecture supports dividing hot, warm, and cold data into separate staging and propagation layers. This facilitates better management of RAM resources by enabling the storage of more data in the less-accessed cold layer. As a result, you can achieve dramatic performance improvements without compromising the flexibility of your data warehouse.

Composite Providers

A composite provider is an InfoProvider that combines data from one or more BW metadata objects, such as analytic indexes, and makes it available for reporting and analysis. This data is stored in the SAP HANA database or the BW Accelerator to ensure faster access during query execution.

The composite provider enables you to reduce the number of InfoProviders, simplify the modeling capabilities and improve agility. It also helps lower the data footprint and save DB – space.

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A composite provider is a new metadata object that combines data from different sources to make it available for reporting and analysis. Unlike multi-providers, it supports union operations. The composite provider offers several advantages over traditional BW models and can be used in various scenarios.

Mergers, acquisitions, and sell-offs are a reality in most businesses. It isn’t easy to merge all the different IT systems representing the individual business processes. Alternatively, keeping separate operating systems for each business unit and only integrating the resulting data into a central DW system is possible. A composite provider is an ideal solution for this scenario because it combines the data from the various IT systems in a single, structured structure.

Data Flow Modeling

As opposed to many other data warehousing products, which are built directly on database platforms, BW is model-driven. A developer logs in to the SAP GUI and enters modeling information for a data warehousing scenario using transaction codes like RSA1. BW then takes care of instantiating that model on the database and running processes to ingest, transform and store data in the warehouse.

This approach leads to agile business reporting. Master data is stored in a single repository and accessed from one location rather than being duplicated across several systems, which can lead to slow performance.

BW/4HANA supports this agility through a set of new features and capabilities, including simplified modeling (fewer modeling objects, field-based modeling, and an integrated analytics workbench), enhanced performance with SAP HANA-optimized queries exposed to SQL, reduced data replication with the in-memory database, an optimized architecture and new data models that improve performance.

In addition, BW/4HANA supports a variety of SAP BI tools with a familiar interface and offers integration with big data analytics and machine learning solutions through open APIs. This enables enterprises to take full advantage of the cutting-edge performance and real-time data that the SAP HANA database provides. At the same time, business users expect superb system performance that doesn’t interrupt their train of thought while they analyze their data.

HANA Views

When a composite provider is activated in SAP BW, an intermediate calculation view is generated on HANA that corresponds to the structure of the combined provider. This ensures that changes to the underlying object are not directly visible in an ABAP system. This also means that if you change the structure of a composite provider in the SAP HANA database, the changes will not be automatically applied to the BW system.

In addition to the external calculation views, an internal hierarchical data view for reporting purposes is created for each composite provider. 

The SAP HANA database supports a new way of modeling that is much more flexible than previous models. In addition, the new component also makes it possible to manage data faster and more efficiently than before. This is particularly important when large amounts of data are accessed for reporting or analysis. 

how does sap bw/4hana work?
How Does SAP BW/4HANA Work?

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