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Product and Topic Expert
Product and Topic Expert


In this blog post you will learn about the overall strategic direction of SAP´s Reporting & Analytics Portfolio. Moreover, I will highlight some story features you can leverage using SAP SuccessFactors People Analytics with insights by SAP Analytics Cloud as well as additional functionalities which our SAP Analytics Cloud Enterprise Edition offers in the context of Human Experience Management (HXM).

What is SAP´s strategy regarding SAP Analytics Cloud?

Source: SAP

When it comes to Analytics, our strategic direction is SAP Analytics Cloud whether as Embedded Edition powered by SAP Analytics Cloud or as Enterprise Edition.

In general, SAP Analytics Cloud is SAP´s strategic frontend solution. The embedded analytics solution is available in the following SAP Cloud applications:

  • SAP Fieldglass

  • SAP C/4HANA (Marketing & Sales Cloud)

  • SAP S/4HANA Cloud

  • SAP SuccessFactors

  • SAP Ariba

  • SAP Concur

All of those Cloud solutions have the same modern user interface which can be seen in the following picture:

Source: SAP

As we can see, every solution has the same frontend that looks identical - no matter if the user uses SAP SuccessFactors, SAP S/4HANA or the Enterprise Analytics option.

Operational Analytics powered by SAP Analytics Cloud - HXM

In the context of Human Experience Management, SAP SuccessFactors People Analytics with insights by SAP Analytics Cloud is the go to Analytics reporting tool which is embedded in SAP SuccessFactors. So based on your live transactional data of the SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite you can create stories (dashboards) for reporting and gain further insights.

Let me give you a summary about some features of SAP SuccessFactors People Analytics to later on see the differences to the SAP Analytics Cloud Enterprise Edition.

Highlights of Story Features

Query Designer
Easily design (Drag & Drop) and build queries on your data foundation with the Query Designer where you can select tables and columns from across multiple SAP SuccessFactors modules. When saving the query, a model is created that allows users to report on data by adding filter conditions, measure definition, and calculated attributes to query definitions.

Calculated Columns
When creating your query you can also add a calculated column by applying supported formula functions to fields that are selected in your Query Design.

Story Design
Explore your data by using your data model to visualize your KPIs or metrics in a way that suits your business needs.

Multi-Source & Multi-Page Report Stories
It is possible to combine several of your SAP SuccessFactors modules within one story (report) in order to reduce the number of reports you are sharing with your managers or colleagues. As an example your report could include a page for your HR Dashboard, the Recruiting Effectiveness, Diversity and your Critical Talent.

Standard Report-Story Templates
We provide 20+ report templates that you can download and use within your stories in SAP SuccessFactors People Analytics to easily see how data can be displayed in the according use case (e.g. Manager Dashboard, Hires Analysis, etc.). Of course it is also possible to customize and modify these templates to make it unique to your company and your needs.

So what did we learn?
SAP Analytics Cloud plays a key role in SAP´s overall embedded Analytics Strategy.

Enterprise Analytics (SAP Analytics Cloud)

Besides the Operational Analytics part where you have a unified analytics experience across SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite, I want to highlight what other possibilities and capabilities SAP Analytics Cloud offers in the context of Enterprise Analytics that help you to make even better decisions.

SAP Analytics Cloud enables Business Intelligence, Augmented Analytics as well as Enterprise Planning capabilities whilst harmonizing data from multiple data sources to have one unified view of your data. Therefore, you have Business Intelligence, Augmented Analytics and Enterprise Planning all in ONE Analytics Platform.

Capabilities of SAP Analytics Cloud Enterprise Edition

Source: SAP

For a general overview, let´s sum up the major capabilities:

Business Intelligence (BI)
In the BI part you can explore your data with dashboards & visualizations and deliver stories to end users that enable them to discover, analyze, plan, and predict all in one seamless user experience. Moreover, you can report on an enterprise level with a formatted design and multi-page reports where you can add a header as well as footer for users to consume (may it on desktop or mobile or even scheduled for offline viewing).

Augmented Analytics
Another major benefit is the Augmented Analytics part of SAP Analytics Cloud. Ask your data questions and get answers powered by artificial intelligence (natural language processing), discover top influencers, hidden patterns and insights in your data - automatically. Just with a click of a button!

Besides that you are able to predict outcomes, run regression and classification scenarios, and generate forecasts. What really stands out here is that there is no data scientist needed anymore. As a result business can focus more on business and less on technology.

Enterprise Planning
Prepare, schedule, and plan by looking at your Line of Business (LoB) areas from a top down to bottom up planning.

Generally speaking, Planning is very complex and needs a lot of collaboration. So working with standalone spreadsheets or in disconnected planning systems can slow down the process or introduce errors. In order to overcome those planning challenges, you can create and modify versions of a planning model. Moreover, you can share your plan versions with colleagues using the calendar and assign tasks within workflows to e.g. the managers to approve or reject those.

Digital Boardroom
Digital Boardroom is the solution for top management reporting where you can create meeting minutes and combine your LoB´s KPIs to have a holistic view of your entire enterprise.

Rapidly build dashboards on the fly with our powerful self-service tool for business users. SAP Analytics Cloud offers a wide range of powerful analysis options. To name just a few: drill-down/up, filtering (chart- or page-level), geo-analysis, mobile access, IBCS/Hichert support and many more.

Analytic Applications
Create your own analytic applications using scripting to customize the applications in order to meet your business needs.

Microsoft Office
Integrate SAP Analytics Cloud with Microsoft Office as Add-in or via Analysis for Office.

The catalog acts as a single entry point for content published to teams within SAP Analytics Cloud. Here reports are displayed as a card which makes it easy for the users to access the most relevant content quickly.

Platform Services
All the core capabilities leverage the same platform services which are for instance Data Connectivity, Data Preparation, Modeling, Scheduling, etc. Especially Data Connectivity is an important topic regarding Analytics & Planning. Generally, SAP Analytics Cloud offers the ability to connect live to data sources just like SAP S/4HANA, SAP HANA or SAP Data Warehouse Cloud but we will come to that in detail in the next section.


Speaking of Data Connectivity, SAP Analytics Cloud has the possibility to connect to live data sources (e.g. SAP S/4HANA) or to acquire data from specific data sources.

Besides SAP HANA, SAP BW/4HANA, SAP S/4HANA, SAP Data Warehouse Cloud and SAP BusinessObjects it is possible to connect to other SAP Cloud solutions such as - in our example - SAP SuccessFactors. In addition, you can connect to SQL data sources or 3rd party Apps.

Source: SAP

Business Content

Another major benefit I want to highlight is the SAP Business Content. To get started with your data models and analytics across your LoB applications (e.g. SAP SuccessFactors) you can use one of over 200 pre-built LoB and industry specific content packages.

The Content Packages can be accessed via the SAP App Store or the Content Network within SAP Analytics Cloud itself.

Source: SAP

Especially for HXM we offer predefined content for HR Analytics, Workforce Planning and many more (as you can see on the very bottom of the screenshot above).

The good thing is: it is free of charge! Just easily use a template that fits to your specific use case and get started right away without spending much time on building up an entire new report.

SAP Analytics Cloud for Planning - Workforce Planning

Amongst our customers operational workforce planning is a common use case to ensure the daily work is done efficiently. As an example I will show you the workforce planning business content that can be imported into SAP Analytics Cloud.

After the import is done, you can access the according analytic applications, plans and dashboards right away. In this example dummy data is displayed. For you doing workforce planning it would be a Snapshot of e.g. your SAP SuccessFactors data.

What we see in the screenshot below, it the Workforce Planning overview page where you can plan your required Full Time Equivalents (FTEs) and do cost calculations. For this blog, we will have a look at the Progress Overview Report as well as the Aggregated Internal Headcount (HC) Plan.

When clicking on the Progress Overview Report we access a pre-built dashboard which shows the overall workforce planning progress of 2021.

With SAP Analytics Cloud you can compare your actuals with your plan data. Moreover, you can directly see all the relevant KPIs e.g. Total Headcount and the percentage of your External Workforce.

The functionalities I mentioned before can of course be applied in this dashboard e.g. slicing/dicing.

With accessing the Aggregated Internal HC Plan we - in this case - want to plan the new hires demand.

The data we see in the screenshot below is aggregated by company code, business unit and division. You can plan at an aggregated level or by other dimensions depending on your business requirements.

As an example we know that we will have eight external new hires for the Corporate Services business unit for Germany. This is why we are performing a single data entry but you could also do a mass data entry.

With entering the number "8" in the corresponding column, the data entry is saved automatically (which you can see on the very bottom).

A significant strength of our solution is that it allows Workforce Planning to be conducted in collaboration with broader plans which are crucial in a world where collaborative planning is the goal. HXM should never be an island and for any workforce plan to truly be effective, it needs to be conducted in coordination with other departments such as finance.

That was just an extract of what´s possible within SAP Analytics Cloud for Planning. Let´s just briefly give you some more benefits of our SAP Analytics Cloud for Planning solution:

  • Excel-like Interactions

  • Conditional Formatting Options

  • Data Actions are carried forward which makes it much more efficient

  • Members can be created on the fly and get updated in the master data of the dimension in the model level

  • Built-in Collaboration Options such as Commenting

  • Private & Public Versions of Planning Models


Short Summary of the Main Differences

SAP Analytics Cloud Embedded Edition

  • Delivered across SAP´s Intelligent Enterprise Applications

  • Operational Analytics with Live Connectivity of the underlying data

  • User can derive insights and take actions within the context of their application

  • 20+ Report Templates

  • SAP Managed Analytics

SAP Analytics Cloud Enterprise Edition

  • Full range of functionality of SAP Analytics Cloud (Advanced Analytics)

  • BI, Planning & Predictive in ONE Solution

  • Live Connectivity as well as Data Acquisition

  • Integration of Multiple Data Sources

  • 200+ Business Content Packages

  • Customer Managed Analytics

Source: SAP - People Reporting + Analytics

You can find a more detailed comparison of the Embedded vs. the Enterprise Edition of SAP Analytics Cloud in this blog post.

With this blog post I wanted to give you insights of the differences between SAP SuccessFactors People Analytics and the Enterprise Edition of SAP Analytics Cloud and I hope you like it.

Please feel free to share your feedback in the comments and let me know if you have any questions.

Many thanks and have a wonderful day,

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