SAP BPC

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Martin Ryan
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SAP BPC

Post by Martin Ryan » Fri Oct 08, 2010 2:59 am

My organisation is looking at working with SAP BPC (Business Objects Planning and Consolidation) and I'm trying to get a handle on it. So far I've managed to ascertain that there is a Microsoft version which sits on SQL server and a NetWeaver version that sits on BW. The Microsoft one has Excel as its main interface for end users. I think the NetWeaver one does too.

A few questions then
- Is there much cross over between the Microsoft and NetWeaver versions or is there not a lot of transferable knowledge?
- Where does the developer work? Directly on the underlying database (SQL or BW)? Excel? In a front end developed by SAP?
- Is there overlap with Business Object Financial Consolidation? If not, what are the differences? I.e. what is BPC not capable of that FC is?

Martin
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Solanna
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Re: SAP BPC

Post by Solanna » Sat Nov 13, 2010 4:44 pm

Hi Martin,

Sorry it took awhile to respond to your question and you probably already have your answers...

Both the MS and NW versions sit on top of Excel
From a front-end perspective the products are identical and all administration happens within the front end which happens to be Excel

The difference is the underlying database

It's been over 1.5 years since I've worked with the product and the NW release was just starting to get deployed so I've only worked with the MS version extensively

In regards to the MS version, in order to be self sufficient with your implementation you would need the following skill set:
Excel expert
MSAS
SSIS
SQL Server DB Admin
SQL/MDX

BPC has it's own script logic which is similar to SQL and back in the original OutlookSoft product you could write script with MDX as well
However that is no longer a best practice since the product does not perform well with MDX code

The developer typically works directly in the Excel environment unless custom SSIS packages need to be created in which the developer will most likely choose to go into BIDS to do the coding and then back into BPC to set up the Data Manager package that will point to the SSIS package
Many typcial packages are out of the box within BPC... for example Import, Copy, FX translation
Configuring the dimension properties is a key to running some of the standard out of the box packages that come with the product

SAP BPC is a consolidations package and that has always been one of its selling points
My understanding was the BOBJ product was being discontinued but that information is a bit old when I was at SAP a few years ago when BOBJ was acquired after we (OutlookSoft) were acquired
Last I heard they were trying to integrate the BI tool into BPC but I don't have any facts on that one

Finally my recommendation... having been a TM1 consultant as well as a OutlookSoft/SAP BPC consultant I would choose TM1 on almost every occasion unless Consolidations is the critical factor
One of the great things about TM1 is that you can build virtually any application with it, but that can also be a negative since there is no out of the box application that comes with it which is the case with BPC

Having a "pre-built" Application Set in BPC has always been a great selling tool but the one that originally comes with the product is only half-baked in my opinion
While I was at Axon I completely reengineered the pre-built application so that it could be used for selling, training, and an implementation tool for all other Axon sales and consulting personnel

From a developers perspective I will choose TM1 every time... granted the performance issues and bugs may have finally been worked out but when I was working with BPC from 2005-2009 it made me hate my job... Being back with TM1 has at least gotten my sanity back

Good luck and let me know if you should need any additional information

Solanna

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Martin Ryan
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Re: SAP BPC

Post by Martin Ryan » Sun Nov 14, 2010 7:33 pm

Thanks very much Solanna.

I'm always very keen on TM1 and will personally only be learning BPC for presales, not development. The reason we're looking into it is that a lot of SAP organisations like to be purely SAP and will always choose the SAP application if one is available, rather than a best of breed solution. It seems easier to get some skill in that than try to beat our head against a wall trying to convince them to use another tool.

Martin
Please do not send technical questions via private message or email. Post them in the forum where you'll probably get a faster reply, and everyone can benefit from the answers.
Jodi Ryan Family Lawyer

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