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Harness the Potential of Unlimited Data Storage

by Dr. Werner Hopf | SAPinsider, Volume 16, Issue 2

April 1, 2015

Organizations are collecting data at an ever-increasing rate. In the past, it was simply too expensive to store every bit of data, but the real-time processing capabilities of SAP HANA makes it possible to lift this limitation. Learn how a data storage strategy based on SAP HANA allows you to retain virtually unlimited amounts of data at a fraction of the cost, enabling you to answer previously unanswerable questions about your business.


The pace of technology innovation is accelerating rapidly. The cloud, mobile technology, and the Internet of Things (IoT) have gone from buzzwords to reality for many organizations, as companies quickly adopt these new technologies to transform traditional businesses into digital enterprises.

For organizations running SAP HANA, in-memory computing is an essential part of moving into this new digital business age. It enables companies to manage the increasing amount of data that these new technologies generate and provides the real-time information that managers need to make critical business decisions.

Yet, with so many technology options available and IT costs growing rapidly, organizations must invest wisely to ensure that they keep the cost of innovation in line with its value to the business.

Innovation Challenge: Managing Data Growth

Historically, when businesses collected large amounts of transactional data, they would quickly dispose of the details and only keep aggregated information. It was simply too expensive to store every bit of data.

With SAP HANA, however, many companies are now choosing to keep all of this valuable data. Retail companies, for example, can leverage transactional data from customer receipts to streamline financial audits and internal fraud investigations, or to develop new business models and pricing algorithms.

However, with many high-volume retailers reporting a monthly data growth rate of more than two terabytes (see Figure 1) and retention periods of seven years or more, the cost of keeping this level of transactional detail often remains too high for many companies.

SAP HANA Special Report - Dolphin

Figure 1 — Typical data storage needs of a large retailer when merging data from a point-of-sale (POS) system

A Strategy for Controlling Costs

Organizations can lower the cost of innovation by archiving static data and storing it in the most appropriate and cost-effective location: using SAP HANA, using nearline storage, or in the cloud.

This way, the company can retain a virtually unlimited amount of data at a fraction of the cost. That data can then be used to answer compelling business questions that were previously unanswerable — in the case of retail companies, questions such as “How effective was last week’s promotion?” or “Is a loss leader really generating additional revenue for the company?”

Learn More

While many organizations can’t answer these types of questions now, the power and flexibility of SAP HANA — combined with the wealth of data available from new technologies — makes it a possibility in the near future.

Innovation cannot come at any price, however. For companies that plan to invest in digital business initiatives, controlling data growth with an innovation strategy can keep the cost of progress under control today and in the future.

For more information on how Dolphin can help you develop an innovation strategy for SAP HANA, go to or email

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Werner Hopf
Dr. Werner Hopf

Chief Executive Officer
Dolphin Enterprise Solutions Corporation

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