Real-World Stories - Unlocking SAP data for fast Business Analytics

Sep 28, 2021 3:00 pm4:00 PM EST

Summary

In a time full of powerful technology, we often question if customers are receiving the most out of their investment. BWG and Qlik are teaming up to dive deep into everyday SAP users to discuss best practices to receive the most from their SAP investments.

BWG Connect and Qlik invite you to participate in an interactive discussion with your peers, exploring this shifting landscape.

As always, there will be no sales pitches and there is no cost to join.

Discussion Topics

  • Unlocking the most from your SAP Data (competitive advantages, increasing revenue, reducing costs)
  • Benefits of a cloud data warehouse vs the traditional & expensive use of SAP data for analytics
  • Best practices on how to industrialize or simplify / accelerate adoption of analytics throughout your organization

Event Partners

Guest Speaker

Matthew Lobaugh

Global SAP Infrastructure Team at AWS

Matthew Lobaugh is a Leader of the Global SAP Beyond and Partner Enablement Teams at Amazon Web Services (AWS). Matthew has over 20 years of experience and is an expert in enterprise technology leadership, sales, marketing, and operations. He has implemented data strategies for Oracle, Pelco, SAP, and Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Matthew participated in the Harvard University Global Strategic Management program and earned his MBA in Business Management from Golden Gate University.

Matthew Hayes

VP of SAP Business at Qlik

Matthew Hayes is the Vice President of SAP Business at Qlik, a software for business analytics with a data-literate world mission. He has over 20 years of experience in the SAP industry. Before joining Qlik, Matthew founded Hayes Technology Group, which was acquired by Attunity in 2013. Matthew also developed Gold Client Solutions, a vital data replication tool used daily by some of the leading global SAP databases in the industry.

Event Moderator

Greg Irwin

COO at BWG Strategy LLC

BWG Strategy is a research platform that provides market intelligence through Event Services, Business Development initiatives, and Market Research services. BWG hosts over 1,800 interactive executive strategy sessions (conference calls and in-person forums) annually that allow senior industry professionals across all sectors to debate fundamental business topics with peers, build brand awareness, gather market intelligence, network with customers/suppliers/partners, and pursue business development opportunities.

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Event Information

Sep 28, 2021 3:00 pm - 4:00 PM EST

Event format

Roundtable Layout
Featuring 20+ executives, where everyone can contribute, ask questions and learn from peers
On-Topic Discussions
Q&A format, moderated by BWG Connect with group interaction throughout
Make Connections
Opportunities to network before and after

BRINGING TOGETHER INFLUENTIAL EXECUTIVES AND SENIOR PROFESSIONALS

What is BWG Connect?

BWG Connect provides executive strategy & networking sessions that help brands from any industry with their overall business planning and execution. BWG has built an exclusive network of 125,000+ senior professionals and hosts over 2,000 virtual and in-person networking events on an annual basis.

Key Discussion Takeaways

How can a business juggle multiple data programs? What are the challenges that come with implementing SAP architecture in most business models? For most, it is a learning curve. A business needs to have accessible and quality data to scale, but finding the resources may be difficult — until now.

Integrating data to observe changes in real-time can be done through a SAP platform. SAP has the ability to replicate database tables and implement a data warehouse for better strategies that ultimately improve your business. So, how do you eliminate the learning curve and access real-time data for your benefit?

In this virtual event, Greg Irwin is joined by Matthew Hayes, Vice President of SAP Business at Qlik, and Matthew Lobaugh, Leader of the Global SAP Beyond Infrastructure Team at AWS, to discuss enhancing your business model through SAP integration. Together they discuss how technology makes your business more competitive, leveraging data tools, and the transition of multiple data processes to a single cloud platform.

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Matthew Lobaugh explains how third-party SAP tools can scale and grow your business
  • The importance of data quality across shared platforms
  • Matthew Hayes talks about improving and impacting your bottom line through data blending on an SAP platform
  • The different SAP models that measure real-time data and allow for client customization
  • What are the difficulties associated with extracting data in a cloud environment?
  • The demanding market IT personnel experience with a SAP platform
  • Supporting your business with data and information
  • How to leverage data through competitive advantage
  • An in-depth look at the challenge of platform innovation
  • How to have a conversation about data

Discussion Transcription

Greg Irwin 0:18

Some of you have joined our forums before, some are first timers Welcome to everybody. Um, these are, we try and make them as agnostic as we can, we're really going to talk about some stories about how different organizations are executing analytics. Primarily when a lot of that data sitting on SAP. We're partnered here with Qlik. And AWS, they certainly have a an opinion about the matter. But we are going to go around the group, my goal is to see if we can share some stories, and just learn some of the give and take or some of the conversation. Use this group for networking. So as we go here, if you hear something that you want to do some follow up on, irrespective of whether it's BWG, or Qlik, AWS wonderful, at all, ask everybody try and walk away with one new idea in one new relationship. And that would be time well spent. My name is Greg Irwin. I'm MC for today. Which means I'm going to go around and ask some questions, maybe share a comment or two about what I hear on my forums. Partner with Matt Hayes over a Qlik, and Matt Lobaugh, over and AWS Guys, do us a favor and give some intros. Matt Hayes, first, please introduce yourself to the group.

Matthew Hayes 1:47

Sure, good afternoon, everyone. My name is Matt Hayes, I'm the Vice President of SAP Business at Qlik. So at Qlik, we were always looking to help our customers get more from their data and understand the data that the or the story that the data is telling them about their business. And when it comes to SAP data, that's very unique data, it's very difficult to access, it's hard to understand. It's it's voluminous in nature. And, and I work with our team to make sure that everything that we deliver for our customers around analytics, data integration, data analytics, is tailored to meet the needs the unique needs of our SAP customers. And Matthew, and I've been working together for the past couple of years, on aligning that messaging and aligning the services and solution offerings, that we bring out Qlik and what they're doing at AWS, you're really just looking to create as much benefit for our customers as possible,

Greg Irwin 2:39

might be a good idea to just level set. What is the relationship between Qlik and AWS? What if I'm a big Microsoft shop? Am I am I in the wrong group?

Matthew Hayes 2:51

No, you're not in the wrong group. We really enjoyed the partnership with AWS is unique because SAP customers are always looking to move workloads to the cloud. And that could be just analytics that could be you know, bi type solutions, it could be the whole lift and shift of SAP, all of that falls into what Matthew and the team does at AWS. But you know, I don't want to get ahead of Matthew's story. But that, you know, his his purpose at AWS is to go beyond the infrastructure story and help SAP customers that are that are moving workloads on to AWS, understand what what services and products are out there to help them at each phase or step of their journey. And with SAP being such a focus area for AWS that matches really up with us in our go to market strategy and focusing specifically on SAP customers and their needs. So it really is a strong partnership that we enjoy with them. Awesome.

Greg Irwin 3:51

Awesome. Thank you, Matt. Matt, Matt Lobaugh, please jump in. Give a little intro.

Matthew Lobaugh 3:57

Yeah, I'll go by Matthew to make it easy that way you can. We were actually Matt and I were doing some, some videos a little while ago. And we were we were even teasing around the idea of two Matt's between two ferns and trying to we've we've done we've done some fun things. One of the we did a video a little while back where we were we were talking about the analogy was that SAP data is the really good the really good wine that's behind the cabinet. He can't get out without having to ask people and But anyway, yeah. Hey. So yeah, I'm Matthew Lobaugh. I've been at AWS for just certified. Sorry, is

Greg Irwin 4:37

there a question? I think Ali that was on your line, guys. Heads up. I would love people to jump in with questions or comments. Just careful in the background noise.

Matthew Lobaugh 4:48

Yeah, no worries. Sorry. Sorry. I thought there was no no big deal. Yeah, so I've been at AWS for just four to five years. I've always been one of the leaders on the sap team. I've done a variety of different things. I started the sap on AWS for industries, for instance. So we have a bunch of industry points of view and solutions and offerings. About a year ago in like, July of last year, I started the beyond infrastructure team. And the basic idea is that, you know, AWS and sap have been partnering together for over a decade and, and a lot of that is looking for, for the, for the beginning, it was about adoption. So it was all about infrastructure. Well, we've got customers now, I mean, we we left 2019, we counted up all the customers, we have over 5000 customers, I'm sure it's over 6000, by now, the big, big, big, big, big audience of like people running SAP in the cloud. And a lot of them have been doing it for years and years and years. So of course, they're asking the next set of questions like, how do I combine my SAP data? You know, what kind of offerings should I use? What kind of AWS services should I adopt? You know, what can you do to help me with AI and ml, there's just all kinds of questions that are coming out beyond just, you know, how do I run SAP in the cloud. And over 80% of the engagements that we have, statistically, with customers today around SAP are either led by or include partners. Now in the past, that was mostly partners that were helping customers migrate, more and more, it's, it's partners, like Qlik helping people, you know, aggregate data, you know, crossing from hybrid configurations into multi cloud configurations. And there's a lot of complexity to all that and Qlik is one of our better partners that actually can really kind of, you know, help you with your SAP data and, and all the way from ingesting it, aggregating it, making sense of it, and then pushing it out the other end. And so they're, they're one of the more I'd say, more more complete data partners that we work with. And, and yeah, and the whole thing of, you know, Azure, and Google and alley cloud and all that. I mean, we, we run into the other, the other cloud companies the same way that Qlik runs into the other data, you know, companies, it's just, it just depends on the circumstances. We've got tons of customers that have some of their stuff in Azure, and some other stuff in AWS and a whole bunch of customers that have a lot on premises still. So that's kind of normal.

Greg Irwin 7:22

Matt. Matthew, I think one of the first questions I have is people are trying to figure out how to get at that good wine. Let's first level set in terms of how to look to a third party, because if you if SAP was on this call, they have an answer. Right. It's called Neeraj. And let me introduce you to that. The our partner right here, and you should call them and they'll help you. Yeah, so what, what, let's see what is a percentage? I always like numbers, and it might be a very rough rough. If you look, if you bump into 100, SAP shops of size, what percentage of them are locked into a third party BI tool to get the good one?

Matthew Lobaugh 8:09

Oh, you know, I can't I can't tell you that. I know those numbers. Were very careful. By the way, that's a good question. I will tell you that at AWS we're super specific about is this. Like when I said earlier, we exited 2019 with 5000 customers, that's an approved data point that we spent six months getting everybody to validate and to approve, then there's the 80% of the customers that I said, That's not a public publicly approved statement, but it is something that I have data and evidence for the answer to this next question is just my personal opinion. So my personal opinion on it is that my personal opinion is that the majority of the customers are using some third party BI tool. And that's just simply because they've the, you know, each each person's preferences are different companies, you know, signed contracts for different reasons, and sap is not the only thing they're trying to get at, right? Yes, so the big the big issue that I I would say SAP has every right to say if you're a startup you know, just use SAP and you'll be great, you'll have a great time. You know, we work with existing SAP customers mostly, and they've just they've got way more than SAP you it's extremely uncommon for us to find a enterprise customer that's been in business for more than four or five years, it doesn't have at least three or four data sources. And because of that, the you know, we have everything wrapped around SAP point of view, it works and for some customers great but the majority of the customers are using multiple data sources. They have their own, you know, analytics tools, they have their own preference for analytics tools. You know, we have an analytics tool and Microsoft has Power BI and Power BI has been out forever and people love it and you know, it's competitive product. But I think it you know, sometimes this stuff gets bundled in kitchen sink deals when customers are buying stuff. And other times it's just, you know, I worked at Schneider Electric for a period of time and we inherited a company that you know, I had these guys were all on dotnet these guys were all on Java man, I'll tell you it was like fighting with the montagues and the Capulets, and Romeo and Juliet to try to get them to settle on a source control system. Sometimes you just end up with it, you know, and it just stays that way. You know,

Greg Irwin 10:31

it's funny, I just did a session about project management tools. And this, this head of project management at a large company was just working on poetic about Monday, comm love Monday. World's Best world's best solution. I said great. How many people do you have it deployed for internally? She goes, Oh no, we don't have it deployed. We're stuck on project our CIO has given us a project and told us we have to use project and we hate it every minute. But But I

Matthew Hayes 11:00

love to eat your own dog food.

Matthew Lobaugh 11:04

Well, JIRA or Confluence and you know the thing is people I mean, I don't know about you guys, but like i i don't want to go out and learn a bunch of new stuff anymore. I mean, I do all the time I have to but like when it comes to like my iPhone, or what I use for my personal stuff, I you know, my personal productivity apps, I just I use Word and PowerPoint. If somebody tells me I gotta use something else, I'm gonna go on Jeepers, really, I'm not great. So I think I think a lot of stickiness just comes out of the user base that just says, Please don't make me change what I already use. And I put up with, you know, I mean, that's very common.

Greg Irwin 11:34

Let's set some were, by the way, thank you all for who who dialed in here, we've got the open dialog. And if you can turn on a camera and ask a question or share a story. Great. If you want, I really want to encourage people to use the chat. It's a nice passive, easy way to kind of throw a question out there and to see what sticks. So make good use of this hour that you all are dialed in for and ask the questions, you've really got a great group. And all the feedback is not just coming from AWS and Qlik and BWG, I really want others to share in in some of those stories. So in that spirit, I'm going to ask Brian to to get on the hot seat here for a moment. And maybe just introduce yourself, tell us a little bit about your, you know what you do for analytics on top of SAP?

Brian 12:29

Well, right now, not much, because we had SAP has my present company for quite a while now. And they're German, so they love SAP. But right now we are going into a partnership with a three Pl. So data is going to be in a couple different streams and really just want to listen to everybody and to see how everybody else deals with multiple data. And I personally hate Power BI and SAP, my one of my least favorite, and then we're trying to present it in tableau. So it's, it's challenging to say the least. So anything easier would be wonderful.

Greg Irwin 13:07

Hey, can you use your wind? For me the pain point is, is it data integration? Or what? What's a magic wand? What are you trying to solve? usable data

Brian 13:21

or presentation and use, especially with supply chain being disaster right now it's, you have to have good data that do anything and you have no data. It's not no data, but poor data, it's difficult to operate on a day to day basis.

Greg Irwin 13:42

Interesting. It's like if we talk about trust, and data quality, and particularly as you get to like a shared enterprise data warehouse, how do your users know that the data that's in there as the data that they want to use and can present and can rely on for their dashboards? Is that is that what you're getting at?

Brian 14:03

That's a good point, a good part of it, and then but a lot of it is we just have data gaps. That's that's a bigger part of it to where we don't, we don't have visibility to track and trace to just certain data until it's too far down the road to be useful. Real, real time data is where we're looking to go. And is

Matthew Lobaugh 14:25

it all is it all contained in the sap systems or do you have to aggregate with other systems, do

Brian 14:31

you it's mostly in there, but now it's going to be in two different systems?

Brian 14:35

Yeah. That's definitely

Greg Irwin 14:38

that's way more common. Yeah, that's tough. Sorry, I just put you on mute there. So let's hear a story on Matt. Matt. Matt Hayes, start us off. Well, I have some of your clients done in terms of Yo protrace getting good use out of the data that's coming that's flowing through the system.

Matthew Hayes 15:05

Yeah, I think that I was listened to the comments. And I just keep thinking of use cases that have come up over and over again. And like Matthew said, most of our SAP use cases are customers saying that they've got data from non SAP systems. And they have to say, they look at it and say, okay, the data from our non SAP systems, we know how to get that into our data lake or data warehouse, but the sap data, we're stuck, because we have to go to the sap team, we have to kiss the ring and ask for special permission to get that data. And then, of course, they want to use the sap tools to do that, and those might not be compatible with what they're trying to do. So we look at it and say, you know, the only way that the only way that our customers are going to succeed, is to really take an agnostic approach to this. And you mentioned, you know, Greg, at the, when your last question you mentioned, well, what about SAP, and, you know, we say, you know, what, same thing, it's, it's, you know, it's an agnostic approach, we don't care that SAP has data integration solutions, because there are use cases for that, our, our struggle is helping the customer get what they need to do, you know, accomplish what they need to do with the data. And when we look at it, we say, okay, we make two key assumptions. One, the customer is going to want to blend non SAP data with SAP data. And the second assumption is that the person that's modeling the data might not be an SAP user. So we need to normalize, you know, like the, you know, the buckers field, you know, we need to turn that into company code, we need to bring over the metadata. So that company code 1000, is equal to, you know, North America, America, you know, North America, United States, Cleveland, or, or Ohio or something like that. So we need to make it so that a non SAP user could look at this data and say, oh, okay, I know what this is I can, I can make sense of this. So when the use cases come in the use cases are, okay, do we want to do a predictive maintenance model. So plant maintenance, for example. So maybe I'm getting IoT data from the systems on the plant floor. And that I can take that log data or that, you know, that, that monitoring data, and correlate that and align it with my equipment master inside of SAP, and then I can build machine learning models that read that data and understand, okay, there's a component on this machine that fails, and it's going to fail somewhere between 203 100 hours worth of use, and they can monitor that. And then they can say, Okay, well, if 80% of the time that this, this component fails, it's in this window, then we can go right before this window, and create predictive service tickets and sap automate the creation of the service tickets. So that this this component can get replaced, while it's still working before it goes out, and stops everything on the shop floor. So those are, you know that that's a great use case. My favorite use case is when customers are looking for micro efficiencies, because, you know, when you when you build a dashboard, and you start digging into the data, you're going to look where you've always looked, you're going to look at the same KPIs, you might get broader visibility to it, you might get a lot more drill down detail into those KPIs. But you're still looking at a lot of the KPIs that you've always looked at. And if you've been with the company long enough, like some of the supply chain, guys have been with with their organizations for 2535 years, and the data might start to validate either their gut instinct or validate what they've been doing, might give them a little bit, way to go left or right of center to make to make a change. But I really think that the micro efficiencies come in when you can train machine learning models against the data to really ask the data, what's going on, that I'm not looking at? If I'm monitoring my cost of goods sold from this point of view, what if I train my model a little bit more this way? Can I understand a different angle on my cost of goods sold? And can that impact my business. And when I talk about micro efficiencies, I'm talking about, you know, high transaction, high volume stuff that's happening within the business, where you can optimize it a 10th of 1%, or, you know, 1%, better than you were doing that 20% better, but is that 1% enough that it'll that it will materially impact your bottom line. And I think that, that, to me, that's the interesting stuff, because there's a lot going on in the data that people aren't used to looking at. And the technology today can help you look at that data a different way, and find efficient efficiencies and ways to operate the business more productively than you traditionally used to,

Greg Irwin 19:38

no matter. I'm going to jump into a bit of tactics because you're right SAP is a different animal. So let's say I'm an SAP shop that does not have clerk deployed. To what extent do you have connectors predefined how long a project is it typically for somebody who's gone through get on SAP for 20 years, and has done lots of, you know, custom data fields and data, data structures that how big a lift is it to tie in your engine into a legacy SAP environment?

Matthew Hayes 20:19

Well, it all It all depends on how, how much you're looking for that data transformation. You know, with our clixsense application has traditionally had a had an SAP connector that allows you to take data out of SAP, but that's more of a batch load type concept, our data integration solutions, and for those of you who aren't aware, Qlik bought a company called a tunity. A little over two years ago, I was part of that acquisition, I was with a tunity. And a tunity, focused entirely on data replication data warehouse automation. So that piece of the business within Qlik is their data integration business. And that's more transformative because it deals with not only accessing the data out of SAP, but accessing it real time. So when we compare it to what a customer is doing today, we typically compare against bw customers today, 70% of SAP customers that run ECC, or s for HANA are also using bw. And you know, bw has these extractors that execute once a day or a couple times a day. But the, the sap typical SAP user is used to a certain amount of latency in the data, let's just say one day. So you're always looking at what happened yesterday, not what's happening right now. And we look at that and say, Okay, I think we can, we can help our customers with real time data integration, so that they could actually observe the changes in behavior in the data right now within the day, as opposed to always looking backwards. So to make this easier for our customers to understand, there's two complexities one is the data itself is complex. So getting it out is the first thing. Second thing is putting it back together. So what we've done is we've looked at the the typical SAP BW models order to cash inventory management, procure to pay, finance, and we've deconstructed those those standard bw models, and reconstructed it using our data warehouse automation solution. What that means is that we've built models that are similar to those. But we've taken into account, different aspects of the metadata we've we've built, we've factored in, the customer's always have some level of customization that they're going to have to incorporate into this. So we've termed them accelerators. They're really accelerators, that we can plug into our our compose solution, which means that whatever your data warehouse is, you know, whether it's redshift, even if you're dropping data into s3, you can build these models up using our compose solution. And it's not tied into you know, it's not tied into just SAP BW. Amen,

Greg Irwin 22:48

man, I'm gonna I'm gonna interrupt you sure I'm in. I like, I like it. I like the real time aspect, which is different. How long does it take for that project? You get on the get on the line with Krishna, you're Parker Hannifin. I can't imagine the sap environments, you're looking at a Parker Hannifin, and all the different data models that you've got there. Matt, if I were to if I were to ask you, if I wanted the opportunity, real time to weigh, read and write in the ad of SAP and building, you know, in data warehouse and building the templates, is this a three month project, six month project? What does it take?

Matthew Hayes 23:28

Well, the most aggressive project on the shortest timeline that we've seen is seven months. And that's that's a customer integrating data from 37 different SAP systems, going into the cloud, doing this full modeling project. So that's, that's seven months, I would say that the normal, the norm is probably anywhere from that to, you know, two to three years depending on how clear the vision is for the customer. And what, that's something that I think is really unique, because you spend so much time doing this, you feel like you've got to help the customer create the vision. And there's so many calls that I get on like Newell, Rubbermaid, he's one of our customers. And we get on the phone, we want to talk about these accelerators and how excited we are. And they're like, yeah, don't, don't bother with that we did this two years ago, we built we know exactly what models that we've built, we've spent years tweaking them, we know exactly what we're trying to do with the data, we just need to get the data faster in real time. And that's a very humbling conversation with a customer because so many customers are not far enough down that vision that they need us to help shape that vision that when you run into a customer where they're where they've spent a lot of time already already building this vision. You know, we're not coming in on day one of the project we're coming in, you know, a year or two years down the road after they've already modeled all their data. And honestly that's that's really nice to come into because the customer knows exactly what they want to do. Do you

Greg Irwin 24:47

need full buy in from the sap team and from SAP to be able to really get full use of this?

Matthew Hayes 24:53

Think so. You know you definitely need technical buying from the sap team. SAP customers are very technically skeptical. So you have to, you have to make sure that they feel confident that you know what you're doing with their data. And then when it comes to SAP themselves, you know, it's always a bit of a shift. Because with SAP HANA, Hana is a gravitational pull. You know, SAP has a vision for their technology, and they share that vision with their customers, and they want their customers to adopt that. And a lot of companies can do that. And that's great. But for the companies that aren't SAP centric, it really becomes a different type of conversation. But part of that conversation is winning over the sap team, making sure that, hey, if you're going to put transportes in my system, if you're going to touch my SAP production system, you better know what you're doing.

Greg Irwin 25:44

Yeah. Hi, Matt. Matt, thank you. Let's keep stirring the pot, ask questions in the chat or raise your hand. And you can do that with there's a little reactions here. But you can just ask a question, unmute yourself and ask a question. I'm Stephen I'm going to invite you to share a comment or question, give us a favorite first, a little a little intro place. Stephen

Stephen 26:10

I am the director of analytic solutions for ao Smith and you guys who are sort of talking about a lot of the challenges, we're currently on SAP ECC, starting to talk about what our path s for is, we've got a fairly heavy investment in our existing SAP BW on HANA warehouse solution. But we know that there are a lot of challenges in the sap landscape, including I don't think SAP really understands what their own vision is. The question earlier about how many people are actually using Lumia. In my circle here in the Nashville area, we've got a number of companies that are sort of that SAP RP with SAP BW, and none of them are actively developing in America, right? All of them have either move Power BI or tableau. And well, I'm sure there are, you know, we've all got that legacy Luma dashboard out there that, hey, you know, at some point in time, we'll get somebody to convert it. But the backlog is always things that are adding more value than converting something that already exists. But everybody I talked to in Middle Tennessee, are all heading one of two directions. And, frankly, from all of our perspectives. luminar is really a dead product, the only people that haven't realized that are at SAP. The big challenge as we look at where we're going is, is that standard extractor, the standard extractor into bw is a high efficiency piece of the puzzle. And we've we've played with them we've dabbled with redshift, and with snowflake, and with a sure and it's really about man oh man extracting 280 tables from SAP, landing them into a cloud data warehouse and then knitting them all back together. Again, the benefits are pretty much a wash against that standard extractor into the bw environment. And, and we've we've started to look at the attunement product. And no, this isn't a plant, but sort of got distracted due to COVID. And staff turnover as I'm sure most of you guys are writing in same issues we are in staff turnover and try to maintain a, a an analytics team that can be progressive and really supportive and embedded with the business. But we've got to figure out that piece over the next 12 to 18 months, because our rebuild if we need to do one, as part of the move from ECC to s four is a daunting amount of work. Somebody earlier talked about supply chain. And you know, it's it's a lot of work the supply building at supply chain data warehouse, combining SAP and in our case, logility to provide a solution for the supply chain team. Probably the biggest, ugliest project that we worked on on the data warehousing side. But our approach has always been let's build out these big self service queries that, you know, try to bring in every everything that a consumer of that particular query would use and put it in their hands to be able to build out with a nanny. Yes, not sure there was a question in there but

Krishna 29:35

yeah, just to add Greg, since you call my name Krishna here, I'm the the care manager or leader at. So just to add to what Steve said or mention, you know, we, we were acquired by Parker a couple of years ago, we were Lord Corporation, it's a private company. We were running ECC, we're still running ECC. So if A few years ago, you know, obviously we had ECC, and we had also bw, that, before I joined the company, they, the management made a decision to go away from bw, because you know, it's, you know, high cost in a turnover in a building and keeping the teams in becoming, you know, it's very difficult. So they made a decision to extract data out of ACC, dumped it into a data warehouse, and then, you know, use Power BI. So, you know, kind of, you know, what Steve just mentioned, you know, just to make it make business users self sufficient, we give them all the data, and then they will slice and dice, you know, once they know how to use Power BI, however, it wasn't as easy, right, so we use a tool called, data, Liberator. It's a, you know, maybe some of you're familiar, so what it does is it can replicate the database tables in from ECC, to a mike no SQL database. So, you know, we pick and choose the, you know, the tables, and then it replicates a nightly basis. And then from there, you know, obviously, we had to educate our bi resources to learn about SAP, because, you know, if you find, you know, a bi, non SAP background resources, and it's new, you know, it's a huge learning curve. So once they understand how SAP operates, or how these, you know, tables are structured, then they, you know, they pull the data, and they started, you know, using it. So we started this many years ago, we haven't really got God into where we wanted. And now, you know, obviously, on the darker side, it's altogether a different journey, we are just starting as for, you know, implementation, it's, you know, we haven't even officially kicked off the project. So we are, you know, we are going to be starting this for implementation. You know, for our pilot division, couple of aliens,

Greg Irwin 31:53

Krishna and Steve, now that you I mean, I assume you guys are both on a roadmap to s four, I think I heard that in your comments. Does that change the connectors to your data, what your third party data warehouse, I mean, it sounds like now is the time to put that strategy in place.

Krishna 32:10

So it's still Greg, for me to do it for me, right? You know, I'm gonna leave the ECC as is because, you know, this is our focus now. So when, when we're looking at as for, for example, we're looking at the Cloud Connector, we are looking at the bpt, we are looking at all the new, you know, you know, tools or solutions that SAP has to offer. And we have at Parker, we have a, you know, entire group that support all the VI analytics. So that group in you know, ncop, and the Enterprise Architecture team will be sitting together to, you know, come up with a strategy on how we're going to be because, you know, we are talking about only two divisions out of 100 plus divisions, right, you know, so we cannot really, you know, go all in, because, you know, it's just a small portion of our total business, we still have to keep our legacy data Mart's, you know, warehouses and all of that. So we are trying to come up with a proper solution on how to extract the data from s four into existing data Mart's

Greg Irwin 33:14

for you try it with, drop it into a data warehouse, and then tool have, you know, tool of choice Power BI can query against it.

Krishna 33:24

Yeah, yeah, we tried it. We tried it. And I would say, you know, we haven't gone, you know, gotten to where we wanted, but at least, you know, we have a few working reports, where the business is using Power BI, you know, to, you know, slice and look at the data.

Greg Irwin 33:40

What's the problem with it? It sounds it sounds I mean, it's certainly a viable path. What's, what's the challenge with that, with that architecture?

Krishna 33:48

Again, you know, the BI team not understanding SAP enough, you know, and then, you know, how to, what are the tables to pull, obviously, you know, we're trying to work with them. And then again, you know, retention idea, it's hard to keep the good resources, you know, they're, they're hard, they're hard to come by, and then when they do, you know, it's hard

Greg Irwin 34:09

to keep them by I get that, but I'm missing the the tie in, what are the skills? That what are the critical skills that you're that you need to maintain? I, I fully agree with the challenge of keeping talented staff. What I'm missing here is, what is the key skill set that is essential with maintaining a third party data warehouse? And then, you know, without architecture?

Krishna 34:35

Yeah, I think the big thing is, you know, we have to, you know, we started with sales and a few tables on the sales side to for us to scale it right. You know, we have to, you know, for us the priorities change, right, you know, we got into this whole merger or acquisition so we can we know, that kind of got pushed back into the backburner. So, the model itself works, Greg, but you know, it's a long ways to go you know, we So, so Coming back, you know, we have hundreds of reports in our bw. Right? We implemented SAP ECC back into 2003. So over the years, we developed many, many reports, hundreds of reports now, you know, the original plan was to migrate everything into this new world and then shut down. bw, we are not even, you know, 25% there, you know. So, you know, who knows how long it's going to take for us to completely shut it

Greg Irwin 35:24

down? I gotcha. For Krishna and, Steve, any key questions you have, I mean, we're kind of talking about it. But I'd love to zero in if the issues cost, if the issues skills, if the issues, you know, real time speed or scale, what's what's a question you have for the I would say it's all of the above,

Stephen 35:48

you know, they try to find good, good data engineers, good data warehouse developers, it's tough. And it's there are lots of early career, people in the field. But getting and retaining seasoned talent to architect a robust, scalable, long term solution is a challenge that is spot on. And it's not that you can, you know, you're basically saying, If I go say, I am going to build this out on redshift.

I am making a probably decade plus long commitment. We're not in the business to implement technology for technology's sake, we're in business to support business, the needs of the business for data and information. And it's really about, yeah, you get into the Maltese, multi language, multi currency, global support. And, well, a lot of early career people coming out of, you know, various master's programs or out of boot camps, could certainly build something be localized work really well, in a small organization, one site, the skill set for building a global long term architecture is in short supply. And as a manufacturing company, the dollars that the people are commanding for a role like that are an order of magnitude more than we typically pay for people in an IT department. It's a challenge and, you know, we've we've sort of got to figure out how do we address that. And you know, we're we're trying to build out some proofs of concept that we've basically got a ticking clock, we are nine to 10 months away from having to make a decision on what the future looks like.

Stephen 37:39

And it's a challenge. I got it, bro,

Greg Irwin 37:43

I got Steve, thank you for that. Krishna, thank you for your comments, all invite others to jump in. But in the meantime, I'm going to come back here to Matt and then to Matthew. All right, if the, if the critical solve is resources, staff and skills, which I think I Krishna and Steve couldn't have put it more plainly. How do you design how do you design around that? Or, you know, a, the simplest architecture?

Matthew Hayes 38:16

Yeah, you know, I was thinking a couple things while while Stephen was talking there, it kind of reminds me of back in like 1998 99 when you you hire an SAP person and then three weeks later, they leave for you know, the triple their salary. Yeah, that's the kind of market that we're in right now. You know, this is a project that every every company is doing this, this is part of the digital transformation, this is part of the data monetization journey. And you know, companies like us and and AWS are very successful at building the need you know, and it's creating the demand and it's it's creating a lack of skill set to and you know, it's not just a lack of skill set if you guys have been on webinars on this topic, and I'm on these all the time, I am delivering them half the time. You know, you hear of the you know, supply chain optimization or data analytics, you know, stories and you don't even see a demo, you don't even see anything concrete, that's how much content there is out there. You get to the end of a one hour webinar and you're like, Okay, I just, I heard more of the same buzzwords that I've been listening to but I didn't learn anything new. So when we deliver our webinars we're like man, we got to make this worth people's time. And it it is tough because we have the same challenge when we're you know, we're hiring people as well. And finding you know, our like our, like some like one of the secret sauces to my hiring lately has been finding these guys with with that with 10 or 20 years of SAP BW experience, that have done snowflake or that are have done redshift, or they've been a cloud on a cloud migration project where they've they've, even though they've done something for 10 years, they've spent the last 12 or 24 months looking outside of that. At what New and you know that's really what every SAP project should be doing is looking for people that that have that have done what they've always done and and they've dabbled are starting starting to look at that you know the new ways of leveraging the data and understanding the business requirements The other thing that I that I heard Stephen say and Krishna both say is that you know the audience for this is really the business and you know, we could do a demo and talk about our technologies and all the cool stuff that we're doing. But this is like going to a car show and digging in under the hood and being like, you know, like the Slip Differential in our trends transmission is like, unlike anything you've ever seen before, and that's cool, but you know, the business needs to know Okay, well how are we going to use this data? What are we going to do? How is this going to transform our business? How is this going to make us more competitive and you know, I, I had a very interesting conversation I'm always talking to customers and yesterday I talked to a customer I can't I don't even want to say what industry they're at. But this customer was all in on data, they're all in on creating a competitive advantage in their business through their data through the use of their data. And then I talked to one of their competitors today. And their competitor that I talked to today was just like, what's the cheapest way what's the lowest cost thing that I can use to get at my SAP data? And I just thought man what a what a difference and these are these are two companies that if I said their name we all are customers of both of these companies. Yeah. And I'm just like wow, this this one company knows exactly how they want to create a competitive advantage in their business with the data and this other company is just like like the division is just not there. They're just like what's the what's the cheapest thing that we can use? And you know I just thought to myself you know, I got I got to write this down because I want to see where these companies are at I want to see their stock prices in a couple years I want to see you know, was the data was this transformational for this for this for this business and the other cars did the other business miss an opportunity?

Greg Irwin 42:09

Well I want to test that for a second though because I think I appreciate both both approaches. Right? And the question is the company that was more all in holistically did they have processes or the environment in place where people were looking more actively to get those insights so yeah, hey we we don't want just why you know sales sales data by region by salesperson we why boom you know we want is that they

Matthew Hayes 42:50

were analyzing every aspect of their of their they were analyzing every minute aspect of their supply chain, including production. Yeah. And they they were they were all in they were heavily invested. You know, I went out and met with them a couple years ago and I said, I said to why us you know, why didn't you do this with with SAP solutions and they explained that you know, the challenges that they had, it was mostly unique to their their environment. But then the guy dragged me into their data center and he pointed out that this is when Hadoop was was big in the market a few years ago, he he gloriously stood me in front of four giant racks and said, this is our, our 100 terabyte you know, a dupe cluster like behold and amend it just makes me giggle because how the how fast things have changed and how that's come in just a couple of years. But you know that these guys were invested they said look, the data is going to make us a better company. But we're not going to be able to do this by putting our toe in the water we're not gonna be able to do this by just slightly adjusting what we've done before we need to go all in on this so I would say that that company had had invested heavily in this journey and I would you know, I know that there's been turnover there you know, they that's the other risk here is you build up this expertise you bring in this this this highly experienced highly paid talent and they do great things for you but you know, they're you know, they're like a like a free agent they're like a sports You know, they're like a quarterback you know, they they have success with you. And guess what, they, they want to go do it somewhere else. Yeah, I'm in Chicago. So that's a terrible example. Not that I have a good example.

Greg Irwin 44:36

Let's get Matthew in on it. Matt,Matt, Matthew, I like I like that analogy of, hey, just let's check the box and get the basics versus full platform all and if you wanted to design for simplicity is there a way to do this on on Not just the state on the cheapest the wrong way, can you design it such that it is not a resource there, there isn't a critical outage or as much of a critical on reliance on on resource.

Matthew Lobaugh 45:16

Unfortunately, I, by the way, I have a lot of empathy for the fellows that have been speaking, you know, it makes you all feel any better. I just had one of my solution architects from the beyond team quit. And so he's quitting like the number one cloud company in the world in a sap integration and data. He just learned, like a truckload of stuff from us. And now he's going to go work for a pharmaceutical company, and just, you know, he's going to buy a yacht, and he's going to live in a mansion. And so it's that is what's happening. So I start off by saying that, you know, it's I like to call it the wingtips meat, meat sneakers problem. Because, you know, the all of us all gray hairs that have been working around with Oracle, and sap for the last three decades, are crashing into a bunch of 20 somethings that are wearing sneakers and have blue hair. And they don't know anything about the sap data model, you know, but boy, are they really good at, you know, containers, and cloud and serverless, and AI and all of that stuff. And then you've got the wingtips that are trying to figure out how to solve these problems. And everybody, of course, is looking for what I think you're asking for. And, you know, quite honestly, Greg, I don't think it really exists unless there is some specific use cases that are super simple. Yeah, you know, the idea that, you know, companies couple of decades ago, stabilized on SAP, or Oracle for their transaction systems got a bunch of standardized reporting, that was, you know, enable them to close their books and be, you know, compliant with regulators and stabilize all that was was brilliant, right? It's just, that's not the that's not the Unfortunately, that's not what, you know, what Steven and Krishna are dealing with, they're dealing with data from way too many sources, they're dealing with business users that are asking to combine things, you know, COVID, supply chain is just massively, you know, if you had a stable set of insights into how your supply chain was going, you sure as hell don't have that anymore. And trying to solve that problem is just highly complex. And you can't just do it with inside an SAP system. And so depending on the breadth of the company, the complexity of the of the environments, and what problems they're trying to solve, it gets super hard, really fast. And unfortunately, that that understanding of SAP is data models, both the former ECC data model and the newer data model for us for the super hard to find by itself. There was a DI D side like Deutsch as SAP user group survey in Europe, I think, a year ago. And they said, What's the number one challenge to you moving to ask for and universally, at least in Europe, they were saying it's, they can't find people that actually they would interest actually do the migration, that the transformation, you know, you can do a lift and shift migration and just shove ECC into a cloud and immediately get cost benefit, my agility and scale and security and stuff. But when you're trying to do Do you know what, what, you know what was being described, right, you got 100 standard bw reports, and you need to move them over. That's a non trivial activity. And then it also reminds me of a time when I was at Hewlett Packard, and we changed from Hewlett Packard to Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Hewlett Packard. What the other one was a printer. But anyway, but I was on the Hewlett Packard Enterprise side, and and all of a sudden, all of the third party contracts that we had needed to be renegotiated because of the change in legal status. So if you if you think that you're going to pick up those ECC reports, and just move them over to s four, that's going to unpack the ability for every person that was reliant on those reports to say, Well, if we're moving them, I also have some other requirements I want to put into the next version of them. So that just clusters everything out to but I think that there are some there are some magic bullets. A couple of them are if you don't have in house, people that actually really understand the data model for God's sakes go talk to Qlik because here's how Matt Hayes does or talk to somebody that you know, get get help. There are some there are some shortcuts where different partners have different ability to scratch itches depending on what's what's itching.

There's there there are people who have figured out a lot of shortcuts and actually have you know, offerings that will shortcut you getting where you need to go. After that. I think that the probably the nicest thing that I figured out was just that this idea of data lakes works, you can, if you can aggregate all the data in one place, you know, put it in a format, where it's all searchable the same way, that cert that certainly keeps you from making yourself crazy, you know, constantly trying to point things at API's and constantly be updating things, that that that seems to work pretty well. But it's just a panacea for just the complexity that these environments are now, you know, posing to the to this audience. And then on top of it, it's super hard to find somebody who's really good at SAP, and really understands data, and really understands how to use these cloud providers. As a platform of innovation. It's just it's just really, really hard to get all three of those things together.

Greg Irwin 50:46

You're right. I was asking for the easy button. And I guess I absent lying, I appreciate the honest, the honest answer that these require a robust platform with people that have skill sets that are not trivial. Which actually, if anything, if there's a silver lining to that it, it reinforces the the salary outlook for everybody on the call. So kudos, kudos there. We've got about five good minutes here. Let's let's, let's make good use of the remaining time. I'm going to invite Mike, Ali, Mark, Brian, Chris, anybody else who wants to jump in? Let's, let's take advantage of the time we have here. So Mike, I'm going to invite you to share a comment or question, can you give a quick intro to the group?

Mike 51:49

Like, whoa, hold on with the Aspire bakeries group, the business Application Manager for SAP and sem. And I've actually been with a company we originally Otis spunkmeyer. So I've actually been with the company for 3030 years, was on the operational side, keyboard SAP. I think the only observation I make we're, we're in that we've just been divested from a parent company. So we're preparing to go through lift and shift on ECC. We don't know as 400 where as four is coming next. I'm sorry, yes, for see myself away. But this is very fascinating. I don't have a specific question. But I did find interesting to comment that it's hard to find folks that understand the data model for precisely so you need in general, just where the tables layout is a little more elaboration on that.

Greg Irwin 52:42

Sure. And Mike, how do you run your analytics today off ECC.

Mike 52:47

We have we have a third party bi that's integrated which will also change when we shift got

Greg Irwin 52:56

very good. Well if this group as you go through your lift and shift, this group can be a resource for you on the data side. You know where to find us. Thank you. Ali. Are you in a spot where you can give an intro and any questions or comments you have for the group?

Ali 53:17

Hello, how are you? this is Ali. Speaking I do not know if

Ali 53:21

you can hear we will plan clear.

Ali 53:24

Yes sir. Thank you very much. I work in cruise company we are Auto Parts manufacturer and we are running SAP ECC six for about let's say five years love. And for our bi we are using SAP BW and did get product that our friends mentioned it we are using a still do mirror not everybody is happy with the Lumia for all the functionality but in order to everything be on the same platform we are we have some sort of hesitation to switch to the other let's say bi products for bw we are certain that we want to use SAP BW for because we are it is completely maths Of course we do not have that says hundreds and hundreds of reports. Of course, maybe maybe we have I do not consider that. Because the we have the whole let's say 10 different modules of SAP. But our bi product has not been activating in all modules. Yes, only on the production side. But to be honest, like my friend, I do not have any specific question for the group right now. But for us here going to the cloud seat, cloud based solutions is a let's say some sort of decision that should be made by the top management, we are not still 100, we are usually prefer that to have our data in our site because of the, in our site because of the different, let's say strategic decisions. But anyway, thank you very much. I am just here to hear what our guy says, and what is the new trends in this area. And thank you very much for all your information.

Greg Irwin 55:28

Absolutely. Oh, I thank you.

Matthew Hayes 55:30

Thank you very much take much much care. All right,

Brian 55:33

let's go Mark, Mark, first, are you on the line with us?

Mark 55:38

I am on the line I've been listening. I'm Mark with jL L. And I do site selection for a lot of my clients. And one of our clients is sa p two. So we work with them on site selection for some of their data centers that actually house a lot of their their servers. But I am always intrigued to find out more about my clients and some of the applications that are used. And so I'm here just listening and becoming a sponge. And, you know, seeing the demands that are out there listening to some of the conversations here, I certainly can, you know, sympathize with them as I'm in larger groups with clients that have these type of discussions all the time. And challenges are real real out there. And I just I don't have a specific question. But I thank you for the opportunity to allow me to sit and listen.

Greg Irwin 56:32

Always Absolutely. Mark, Mark. Thank you. Let's let's go back to MattMatthew, we're going to wrap up here. And of course, this shouldn't be the last conversation, you know, this group is meant to be a resource. So all we're going to do is send out a list. You can use that to kind of as a catalyst to kick off connections between yourselves or with Qlik or AWS or whomever and However, it's of value to you. Matthew Lobaugh, let's do us a favor closing comments here for the group place.

Matthew Lobaugh 57:05

Well, I thank you for continuing to invite me to these because I do find it insightful and I always like to hear from customers. I you know, I kind of feel like we're others don't have questions. I'm not sure I have any you know, real broad guidance, I'd what we tend to find is that the business topics will dictate the that's that's probably the easiest way that I know to narrow, narrow things because people will will say, Tell me what Tell me about data lakes or tell me about you know, AI and ml? or What should I do for my IoT strategy? And I, the people on my team are we're all very specific about saying, well, that's that's all fine. But tell me what, why you're asking, we really want to ask open ended questions and find out what are the challenges that you're trying to get. And then and then probably the only other thing I would say is that it's, you know, in my little world, I've got this, this big old cloud platform that's a bunch of building blocks. And it's designed for builders. But in the enterprise world, people actually want to buy solutions and offerings that are supported that solve their problems. And we're hearing that from customers, press analysts, partners, we're just hearing that more. So you can expect that we're going to spend a lot more time with partners like Qlik, and we're going to spend a lot more time as as Matt was saying, it's real interesting that the differential on the car does something but we're really going to spend a lot more time finding out, oh, you're a retailer and you're having problems figuring out what what your how to share your customer master data in a way that's going to solve some specific problem. Now we're somewhere. So I just encourage the audience to think that way, come up with specific issues, because it makes it a hell of a lot easier to figure out how we're going to cobble together SAP data and partner offerings, it's just a lot easier if we know that there's a specific problem we're after.

Greg Irwin 59:03

Absolutely. also easier to just decide whether you've been successful or not. No, Matt, Matthew, thank you, as always, Matt Hayes, any closing comments for the group?

Matthew Hayes 59:14

Yeah, I mean, I, I reiterate what Matthew said, we love hearing use cases, we love to have these discussions. The most, the most relevant conversations I have every day are not ones that I have with my colleagues, but ones that I have with my customers. You know, the whole thing is, I'm a technology guy and and Matthew is too and you know, as a as a, as a technology guy, I want to build solutions that that that help customers get to where they want to be on their journey. And and this analytics conversation just keeps expanding and expanding and expanding. And, you know, it has me so curious as to what we you know what we can do with our customers. You know, I've got this I've got this weird obsession with, you know, changing, like changing the conversation with your data? How do you how do you have a conversation with your data? How can it not be a SQL query or a report or an email to somebody saying, asking for information? How can we make this so normal? that any user in the business can just ask the question? What's up? What is our cost of goods sold for the, for the state of Ohio for January of 2020 versus January of 2021. I mean, having, you know, having access to that data and having it be interpreted and responsive in a quick way, that's, you know, that that's it, that's interesting. And, you know, I have to go back to me as a technology person and say, Okay, how can we really make this happen? And I really think that, with the technologies that are out there, how everything's been evolving, the services that AWS is, is releasing and enhancing and the stuff that we're doing, we're at the precipice of make making that a reality. So I just, I just want to work with our customers to say, you know, show me how we can do this with you how, show me how, show me what you need, so we can enable this technology for you. But,

Greg Irwin 1:01:07

I mean, we're on to the follow up and the opportunity there. Now, again, encourage everyone to just use this group as a resource. Matt, Matt, thank you, Steph, and everybody. Thank you all for joining and sharing the stories and a good a good conversation all the way around. With that. We're going to wrap it up. Take care everybody. Look forward to our next discussion. Awesome. Thank you. Bye bye.

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