This blog covers some of the latest features and enhancements in SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Digital Boardroom Release 2021.06.
Please note that the SAP Analytics Cloud Help documentation is updated at the same time as the upgrade to this release, so the links here may not yet reflect what is described below until after the upgrade is complete.
Upgrade your SAP Analytics Cloud agent to the latest agent version 1.0.313 to take advantage of all the data acquisition types!
If you haven't upgraded yet, here are the data acquisition minimum requirements:
- Version 1.0.99 for SAP ERP / SQL databases
- Version 1.0.235 for SAP HANA view
- Version 1.0.91 for SAP Universe (UNX)
- Version 1.0.233 for SAP Business Warehouse (BW)
- Version 1.0.248 for File Server
- Version 1.0.75 for all other data source types
For more information, see the System Requirements and Technical Prerequisites.
SAP Analytics Cloud fully supports Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome for all activities and areas of SAP Analytics Cloud including viewing, authoring and administration.
Highlights of this release
- New Model
- Dashboard & Story Design
- Data Visualization
- Enterprise Reporting
- Collaborative Enterprise Planning
- Schedule Automatic Data Locking Tasks in the Calendar
- Publish and Submit in One Step
- Run Data Actions in Story Contexts
- Optimize Advanced Formula Scripts with the Calculation Scope Dialog Box
- The Sky is the Limit with Removed Limitation for IF Conditions with AND/OR Keywords
- Leverage Aggregated Dimensions in Advanced Formulas
- Stop and Exit FOREACH Loops Immediately Using BREAK
- Augmented Analytics
- Predictive Planning
- Analytics Design
- Mobile Analytics
This blog provides a high-level overview of the latest features in SAP Analytics Cloud. If you're looking to get more information about these features, please visit the Help documentation here.
Introducing: a new modeling paradigm.
SAP Analytics Cloud has completely redesigned the modeling experience for the better. The Modeler now offers the possibility to create a New Model which lets you add multiple measures and an optional account dimension to the model, benefiting both planning and reporting functions.
This New Model blends concepts from account-based modeling and measure – or key figure – based modeling approaches to allow for greater flexibility and power in solution design, providing you with:
- More flexible modeling: You can set formatting and aggregation on accounts, measures, or both, and choose which settings to prioritize. This flexibility opens up new options like integrating your balance sheet and your profit and loss statement. You can also choose to use a generic dimension for your accounts to avoid any limitations related to the account dimension.
- DECIMAL and INTEGER support: When you create a measure, you can select a measure data type. Supported data types include DECIMAL(31,n) where n is in 0,…,7 and INTEGER. When you enter and distribute data in tables, all cells of an integer-type measure will get integer values.
- Powerful calculation options: Calculated measures and currency conversion measures can be added in the modeler and reused across multiple stories and analytic applications. You can create calculated measures in the modeler that take another measure and a typed dimension attribute as an input and flip the sign of the input measure according to the sign of the typed attribute. You can also create a custom priority for calculations to ensure that measure and account calculations are applied in the required order.
- Enhanced currency conversion: Besides reusable conversion measures, you can base calculated measures and accounts on your currency conversions. In tables, you can plan on any base measure or conversion measure and instantly see the results across currencies – and you can apply currency conversion while copying data with a data action. Finally, all options (rate versions, booking date, and more) that are known for Classic Account Models are supported, and existing rate tables created for Classic Account Models can be re-used.
- Better integration: Measure models match the structure of many trusted data sources like SAP S/4HANA more closely, making data integration faster and simpler. As a result, you can re-edit existing jobs and benefit from a more intuitive workflow and mapping experience, enhanced wrangling expression language, an improved experience during execution – including visual cues of job progression – and more.
- Clearer experience for story builders and viewers: Non-financial data can be stored in measures instead of members of the account dimension, making data in charts and tables easier to understand.
- Migration tool: To get access to the new features quickly, you can migrate a classic account model with no dependent objects into a new model with measures. The resulting New Model has same account-type dimensions as the classic account model and the option to add additional measures.
The Path to the New Model
Please note that Classic Account Models continue to work as before. Furthermore, you can choose to opt-in to the New Model at your own pace, so there's no rush!
Note also that Classic Account Models can be converted into New Models and additional measures can be created after conversion.
To learn more about the New Model, register for our upcoming webinar.
Dashboard & Story Design
Add some personality and expression to your story and data point comments by formatting with different font styles and colors. You can also add bullet or numbered lists, and insert hyperlinks. This will be key to linking to useful examples and resources while collaborating on a story with your team.
Previously, at design time, the default "Present" template was sized at 1024 x 768px. Now, users can set the size of a fixed canvas to exactly match the Microsoft PowerPoint default size of 16:9 (HD), or 1280 x 720px. Note that this will be the default export file type to PowerPoint (pptx) when all canvas tabs are 16:9 (HD), and that this canvas size is only available in landscape orientation.
Collaborative Enterprise Planning
As the data locking owner of a specific region (or data slice) of a model, you can now schedule automatic data locking tasks in the calendar, and the system will set the locks at the specified time. As a result, in the first scope, the data locks are executed on the rights of the owner or creator of the task as there are no assignees on automatic tasks.
Through the automation of data locking, you do not need to log in just for a simple click on submit. With the recurrence feature it is then possible to have all regular locking executed automatically at the point in time they are needed with no need for users to take any further steps except creation.
If you are working on a task with an associated story, you now can publish your data changes within the submit dialog. That is to say, when assignees and reviewers of calendar tasks change data in a story or analytic application, they don't need to publish their changes in a separate step anymore. The data changes will automatically be published when assignees submit the task, and when reviewers approve or reject the work of the others.
For data action triggers in stories, you can now link parameter values to input controls and story filters. This lets users run the data action on the current story context by retrieving parameter values automatically from the linked input controls and filters, without opening the trigger configuration or the prompt dialog.
When working in advanced formulas, you can now benefit from a pop-up dialog box that shows the calculation scope of the formula in question. With this new feature, you can estimate the scope of a calculation in design time and optimize the formula script for better execution performance.
New to working with formulas in SAP Analytics Cloud?
Check out the following resources to learn how you can incorporate basic and advanced formulas into your workflow:
Several limitations have been removed for IF conditions with AND and OR keywords. For example, you can now combine conditions on members, RESULTLOOKUP values, properties, variables, external parameters, dates, and numbers. You can also use parentheses to group conditions. Furthermore, more complex and detailed condition expressions are possible with shortened scripts, meaning better execution performance time and better overall readability.
For more information, see All Script Formulas and Calculations in Advanced Formulas on our Help Portal.
In the advanced formulas script editor, you can now specify dimension members to aggregate for the entire step, whether from the default model or a linked model. This way, you can avoid running calculations on separate records for each dimension member. You can also load pre-aggregated values as the calculation scope for current or remote models, minimizing the dataset size of calculation scopes for non-calculation related dimensions, such as SAP Analytics Cloud story filters or Business Warehouse aggregation levels.
In an advanced formulas step, you can now specify a condition to skip the remaining loops of a FOREACH function, using the BREAK keyword. For example, you can stop the depreciation loop with a date dimension if the residual book value reaches a value of zero.
This gives you better control over FOREACH calculations, and lets you improve the performance of your data action by skipping unnecessary calculations in a FOREACH function.
Predictive planning now lets you save predictive forecasts for past periods to the private version of your planning model. This means you can assess the performance of your predictive forecast by using all the visual and modeling powers right there in your story, to compare the difference between your predictive forecast and the actuals, plans or budget.
As a user of data analyzer, you can now directly access SAP Analytics Cloud models in the Select Data Source dialog for your ad-hoc data analysis.
To learn more about working with the data analyzer, visit our Help Portal, here.
As an application designer, you can now use the technical object Data Actions and the relating script APIs to run short-running data actions via scripts as well as set and read parameter values, allowing for better, more flexible integration of Data Actions into your workflow.
This just in! The SAP Analytics Cloud Mobile iOS app now supports "Tunnel" direct remote connections with SAML SSO when working in the optimized story loading mode. Users leveraging this type of connection can remove dependency over VPN and can seamlessly connect to their backends both for SAP Analytics Cloud desktop and mobile versions.