This blog covers some of the latest features and enhancements in SAP Analytics Cloud and SAP Digital Boardroom release 2020.11. Please note that the 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 1.0.275 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 1.0.75 for all other data source types
For more information, see System Requirements and Technical Prerequisites.
Highlights of this release:
- Data Visualization: The TRIM Function in Story Formulas
- Data Visualization: BW Input Controls: Starts/End with Search Improvements
- Data Visualization: Facet Loading Configuration in Explorer
- Smart Predict: Planning Models can now be used as data sources for Predictive Scenarios
- Smart Predict: Predictive Scenarios in Files Area
- Smart Predict: Redesigned Settings Panel
- Planning: Validation Warnings
- Modeling: New Viewing Options
- Smart Assist: Dimension Specific Indexing Configuration for Live Models in Search to Insight
- Analytics Designer: DataSource APIs
- Analytics Designer: Support for NULL Members and Totals Members
- Analytics Designer: Chart’s and Table’s Number Format
- Administration & Infrastructure: Content Network
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.
Story creators can now use the TRIM function in story formulas. This means you will now have the flexibility to trim string spaces in the story calculations rather than relying on backend data source calculation layers, overall reducing the turnaround times when creating and editing stories. This function is specifically useful when doing calculations on data from flat file uploads. TRIM is supported only for models based on Acquired or Live HANA connections.
In SAP Analytics Cloud, you can now search for members with a certain pattern in input controls. This means, when searching in story and page filters, you can now specify “starts with” (a*) or “ends with” (*a) search terms. Please note that this is not a wildcard filter, meaning this only encompasses searches for existing members of the dimension. New members will not be automatically reselected. Also, it is important to note that this feature is only supported for Story and Page filters and not supported for Hierarchies.
When enabling Explorer views for visualizations in Stories, Story Designers can configure measures and dimensions to be included in the view. To improve performance when opening the Exploration View, by default, only dimensions used in the chart will be loaded as facets in Explorer. To see other configured dimensions, the viewer will need to select desired dimensions. Story designers can disable the default for all configured dimensions to be loaded upon opening of Explorer View.
The next feature revolves around integrating planning model data sources with Smart Predict to unify the Predictive, BI, and Planning experience in SAP Analytics Cloud. This means you will be able to create your predictive model from your planning models. You can then inject the predictive results directly into your planning models. These predictive results can be broken down and segmented across multiple dimensions and members, facilitating automated and intelligent bottom-up forecasting at scale.
Further, planning users will be able to access the predictive reports, enabling them to see the quality of the debriefs and KPIs. Receiving these insights will empower users to make the most accurate and confident decisions for their business.
In SAP Analytics Cloud, predictive scenarios will now be created and stored in the “Files” area. Here, you can also store your predictive scenarios alongside your favorite models, stories and other files. This update provides you with a layer of security when working with your predictive scenarios as you can decide which scenarios are visible to your teammates or to specific users.
Did someone say more improvements? Yes, you heard right because we have made improvements to the Settings Panel, providing you with a smoother user experience when creating and editing predictive models. The new enhancements for the Settings Panel include:
- On-demand contextual “Help” for entry fields with the associated information (i) icon.
- Click the (i) to display the “Help” dialog, which provides an explanation of the entry requirement for the specific field.
- We’ve made key terminology changes to make complex predictive concepts more understandable.
- Predictive modeling parameters and options have been regrouped to facilitate predictive model creation. This will make it easier to define your predictive goal.
- New messages inform and guide users when a selected parameter or option isn’t available in the data source, along with default placeholder values in fields.
As a planner, you’ll now see validation warnings in your table, enabling you to quickly identify which values are invalid for data entry due to dimension combination rules. You can delete the value in these cells, but data changes will be reverted when you publish your version. These visual cues will help reduce errors and streamline the plan entry for users by highlighting valid dimensional combinations in-line during the data entry process.
For every organization, it’s essential to get the full picture of your data to make the most effective and meaningful business decisions. This is why we are introducing two new viewing options in SAP Analytics Cloud:
- “Structure View”: Will allow you to easily look at your models in a star schema style view, providing you a graphical, diagram-based modeling experience. This view works for account-based models.
- “Data Foundation View”: Will allow you to see the underlying fact data of your model from the “Model” tab. This view is synchronized with “List” and “Structure” views.
The 5000-member indexing limit will be removed, allowing Search to Insight users to search for all dimension members even for high cardinality dimensions. At index time, it’s possible to exclude certain dimensions, such as sensitive or unwanted dimensions, in order to hide dimension members from Search to Insight. This update empowers users to choose their desired level of hierarchies to index from, providing you with greater control over results in Search to Insights while increasing overall performance.
For all application developers out there, we have a handful of useful updates that will provide you more flexibility when using SAP Analytics Cloud.
As an application designer, you can now use the DataSource APIs(setHierarchyLevel(), getHierarchyLevel() ,expandNode() and collapseNode()) to set the hierarchy level of a dimension and to expand or collapse individual hierarchy nodes.
SAP Analytics Cloud will now support “NULL” members and “Totals” members to application design scripting APIs. This change enhances the Alias enumeration with two new literals: Alias.NullMember and Alias.TotalsMember. These literals should be used in scripts whenever a “NULL” or “Totals” member needs to be referenced.
The following DataSource APIs have been enhanced to handle or return NULL or Totals members correctly:
- getMembers(), setDimensionFilter(), setVariableValue(), getData(), getResultSet(), getDataSelections(), getResultMember()
- The following Table / Chart API has been enhanced: getSelections()
- The following Planning APIs have been enhanced: setUserInput(), DataLocking.getState
You can say goodbye to manually having to set the scaling factor for each chart individually. Now, application designers can set the number format of charts and tables with the following APIs:
Administration & Infrastructure
From the Content Network, you can now import and export teams, team folders, and content in the “System” folder. This means, for administrators who are managing the lifecycle of content between tenants, you can now import and export team related content. This update provides you with greater control while managing the lifecycle of team content.
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