EIMI had the great pleasure to staff the enterprise information management booth at SAPPHIRE NOW this year where we launched SAP Agile Data Preparation. This tool is targeted at business analysts who need more data profiling, integration, and cleansing functionality than a spreadsheet can provide, and easier use than standard ETL tools provide.

Over and over, customers told me, “This is exactly the kind of tool we need! How soon can we get it?”

Customers from TE Connectivity and Mohawk Industries both said, “With this tool we can finally deliver self-service analytics to the business.” I asked, “Don’t you have some self-service business intelligence (BI) tools such as SAP Lumira?”

They said they did, but that IT still has to do the data preparation and cleansing before they let the business people start doing analysis.

I’ve been thinking about what they said. It reminded me of a conversation I had a few years ago with a colleague about mobile BI. I first heard people talking about mobile BI in 1999/2000. Yes, you could get some reports/alerts sent to your mobile phone, but the infrastructure needed to support it wasn’t there yet. Mobile BI only really took off after the build out of high speed networks and development of smartphones and tablets.

To me, self-service BI was in a similar state. There were excellent tools that enabled business people to do data discovery and visualization, but the infrastructure to support true self-service still wasn’t quite there. Now with self-service data preparation, self-service BI is a concept whose time has finally come.

SAP is providing integration of SAP Agile Data Preparation with SAP Lumira, SAP Cloud for Planning, and SAP Predictive Analytics to ensure customers have complete end-to-end solutions.

Is your self-service BI truly self-service?

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