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SAP began its first internal HANA deployment in 2010. This series of blogs provides some more insights in SAP's own HANA roadmap. In part 2 I want to talk the next step on our journey towards HANA: The introduction of side-car scenarios powered by HANA. The goal of introducing side-car scenarios was to implement new HANA business solutions while reducing the time to implement these solutions and to minimize the risk for our internal businesses during the implementation and go live.

One important scenario for SAP was the introduction of the cost and profit center analytics (COPA) accelerator. COPA is a key part of SAP's quarter end closing process. Pre-HANA, it took two full days and nights to distribute costs and profits across all profit and cost center hierarchies. This is only possible by using highly aggregated data. In SAP there are more than 100 million line items involved in this and long running batch-jobs were necessary to distribute profits and costs to more than 170 different hierarchies.

The HANA COPA accelerator was very easy to implement. Actually, the HANA box just gets connected to the ERP system and immediately all COPA relevant data gets replicated to the HANA box in parallel. Once the HANA box is connected, the ERP system directs all COPA queries directly to HANA instead of getting the data out of its classical ERP database. With this we were able to reduce the runtime from approximately 48 hours down to several minutes! This being said, we are now able to perform re-alignments and even simulations and "what-if" scenarios, which were not possible before. On top of that, the LoB is now also able to look into all line items which they were not able to do before.

The implementation of the COPA accelerator took no more than a couple of days and it was absolutely risk free. E.g. if the HANA accelerator is not working or is not available, the system automatically falls back into the standard COPA scenario. The overall benefit for us was huge since the COPA accelerator now enables us to shorten our quarter-end-closing process and with this to transform our internal processes.

This is part two in a series ‘SAP’s Road to HANA’. See part one here!

For more information on HANA, please visit: