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Seeing is believing: Building executive-level dashboards at Reporting, Planning and Analysis 2010

by Kristin Bent

November 10, 2010

While all sessions on the Reporting, Planning, and Analysis 2010 program here in Barcelona deliver expert tips for building fast, user-friendly SAP reports, I love the speakers’ quickness to actually show these reports first-hand.

Dr. Bjarne Berg’s Jumpstart session, “Lessons to design and deploy dynamic dashboards and cockpits using SAP NetWeaver and SAP BusinessObjects solutions,” did just that. In addition to reviewing the (many) written tips within his PowerPoint, Berg had an obvious enthusiasm to show live SAP dashboards to the audience. Afterall, isn’t a “pretty” appearance the whole appeal of SAP dashboards in the first place? You can walk away with all the documentation and written advice in the world – but if you don’t see a dashboard first-hand, or truly understand its design implications, what good is it all?

Another thing I admired about Berg’s session, was his focus on the full range of SAP reporting and dashboarding solutions (both “traditional” and SAP BusinessObjects). He spoke about of BEx Query Designer, SAP NetWeaver Visual Composer, and Xcelsius (to name a few), weaving detailed demonstrations throughout.

When discussing Web Application Designer, for example, Berg’s demo was made up of six distinct “mini” demos. He showed the creation of 3 graphs, the creation of a table, the selection of a C omboBox, a text box display, the customization of charts, and the modification of data providers.

Tying it all together, Berg noted that the traditional ASAP  methodology doesn’t quite work as well when it comes to dashboard and cockpit deployment – the extensive customizations involved, along with the plan-as-you-go feel surrounding the tools, don’t mesh with such a straight-forward project management approach. It’s probably best to play around, and see what works best for you team. In other words, learn and adjust as you go.

I look forward to seeing the other SAP and SAP BusinessObjects demos here in Barcelona. While Berg’s were a great example of the immediate benefit they provide, I know they were only the first of many to come.

Oh, and the city's not so bad, either :)

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William Newman

9/25/2013 8:49:53 PM

For those of you attending the GRC2010 and Financials2010 conferences don't forget to attend the GRC and EPM solution labs going on during the conference. Drop in or scheduled a deep dive session for 45 minutes!