Enterprise Analytics vs. Embedded Analytics
When selecting a suitable analytics solution, companies often come across the terms enterprise analytics and embedded analytics. But what are these two analytics solutions and how do they differ? In order to make the selection for (1) enterprise analytics, (2) embedded analytics or (3) both analytics solutions, the following aspects can facilitate the decision in this regard.
Table of contents
Definition: What is enterprise analytics and what is embedded analytics?
The embedded analytics provided by SAP enables real-time operational reporting. This way, companies can make faster decisions, but also save a lot of time by not having to prepare and replicate the data in a data warehouse. Instead, the data can be analysed directly in the source system and visualised using ready-made standard dashboards.
In comparison, enterprise analytics offers companies the possibility to analyze and process collected analytical data of a company for a holistic corporate management. Here, several data sources can be connected in order to gain meaningful insights and to obtain a (preferably) complete picture of the company. A central platform for this is the SAP Analytics Cloud, which enables planning and predictive analytics in addition to BI.
What is the difference between enterprise and embedded analytics?
To clarify the differences between enterprise and embedded analytics, seven key assessment criteria for their application are compiled below:
1. Data modelling
While data persistence is given when using enterprise analytics, even for comprehensive data sets, the data is not persisted within S/4HANA Embedded Analytics.
2. Connection type
The two solutions also differ in terms of how data is connected. A live connection, as in the case of embedded analytics, ensures that the data is not replicated in the system. The alternative, on the other hand, is usually via data replication.
3. Data sources
If data from S/4HANA is to be combined with data from other systems, enterprise analytics is the appropriate solution because it enables the connection of diverse data sources. With embedded analytics, these are limited to S/4HANA, for example.
4. Data evaluation
With embedded analytics, the data can be evaluated directly in the ERP system S/4HANA, for example. For the other analytics variant, on the other hand, the evaluations can be carried out within tools such as SAP Analytics Cloud or Tableau.
5. Areas of application
While embedded analytics focuses on the implementation of real-time operational reporting, enterprise analytics is suitable for holistic business management and covers a broader range of applications.
6. Data observation
The time horizon for embedded analytics tends to be short- to medium-term, rather than long-term as in the alternative.
7. Data history
According to their different scope and time horizon, the history of the data is also different between the two solutions. For the presentation of operational reporting in real time, embedded analytics uses only current data from the operational system. For comprehensive corporate management, as in the case of enterprise analytics, historical data is important in addition to current data.
Table for a better overview of the comparison of enterprise and embedded analytics
|Crit. No.||Assessment criterion||Embedded analytics||Enterprise Analytics|
|1||Data modelling||Non persistent||Persistent|
|2||Connection type||Based on live data||Mostly based on data replication|
|3||Connection of data sources||No, only ERP system (e.g. only S/4HANA at SAP)||Yes, e.g. ERP systems and other data sources|
|4||Where does the data evaluation happen?||In the ERP system (e.g. S/4 HANA)||Directly in the corresponding tool (e.g. SAC)|
|5||Suitable for||Operational business management (from business transactions of the ERP)||Comprehensive corporate management|
|6||Data viewing||Rather short-term||Rather long-term|
|7||Data history||Only current data||Current data and historical data|
Table 1: Comparison of Analytics Solutions, Illustration s-peers AG
What are examples of enterprise analytics tools?
Compared to embedded analytics, which takes place directly within SAP S/4HANA, there are different tools for implementation here, which are described below with some examples.
In doing so, these analytics tools can go beyond just business intelligence (BI) to include planning and forecasting capabilities to provide a full 360° view of the business.
The following examples are presented below:
The SAP Analytics Cloud is a well-known tool from SAP for enterprise analytics. The SAC combines the areas of business intelligence, corporate planning and augmented analytics within one solution and enables comprehensive corporate management with individually developable dashboards.
In addition to solutions from SAP, however, there are also solutions from other providers, such as Tableau from Salesforce. As a tool for data visualisation, it enables the user to prepare complex data and show existing relationships in the data. Thus, the focus here is on applications in the area of business intelligence.
Another tool in the area of enterprise analytics with a focus on business intelligence is Power BI. Here, too, the user is enabled to create interactive dashboards, cleanse and integrate complex data and identify trends in data sets.
Conclusion: What have I learned now?
It became clear that embedded analytics and enterprise analytics have distinct differences, ranging from data connectivity to data evaluation. Companies thus have the option of using both: a solution for real-time analyses and a comprehensive experience with additional functions for holistic corporate control, as is the case for enterprise analytics.
Nevertheless, the two solutions are not mutually exclusive; for some use cases, it can also make sense for a company to use the two analytics solutions together.