The success of any modern enterprise can arguably be ascribed to its ability to make informed, accurate decisions regarding changing business paradigms in real time.

by Neil Herbert, director: business analytics at SAP Africa

From the shop floor to the top floor, teams are increasingly relying on the insights delivered by advanced analytics solutions to power their decision-making and ensure they effectively navigate the complexities of doing business in this exponential age.

Advances in technology today enable enterprises to blur the lines between formerly siloed business and IT users. Data, the fuel that drives every intelligent modern enterprise, can now be consolidated, processed and mined for insights through a combination of business intelligence (BI), planning and predictive analytics all built on a powerful analytics platform. This provides all business decision-makers with access to real-time accurate business insights that drive performance, improve operations, boost revenue and powers high-performance teams for competitive advantage.

And as processes increasingly migrate to cloud environments, enterprises are gaining unprecedented agility and flexibility in how these insights are gathered, processed, delivered and consumed.

The irreplaceable value of accurate insights

Enterprises typically rely on business intelligence solutions to eliminate guesswork and improve the accuracy of their decision-making processes. According to a Forrester Consulting and SAP study, 92% of companies with mature data, analytics and BI practices have seen a revenue growth of 15% or more over the past three years. More than 80% of global survey respondents found that a hybrid analytics approach – one that combines on-premise data and technology with cloud capabilities – is an effective first step to enhancing the effectiveness of the organisation’s overall BI and analytics capabilities.

Global organisations are employing the power of analytics to drive improvements in every business function – even ones that were traditionally slow to apply data-driven insights and capabilities. This unlocks immense productivity gains and improved customer experience benefits across the enterprise value chain.

European start-up Sablono has developed a web and mobile application that manages, documents, and oversees complex construction and delivery management processes that gives project managers access to real-time information for the first time. By ensuring detailed construction sequences are kept on schedule, construction companies are able to gain immense time and cost savings – and enjoy a far happier customer base.

Singapore-based SaaS provider In Mind Cloud has developed a solution for the highly disrupted manufacturing sector that brings configure, price and quote (CPQ) processes into the digital age. The solution draws live data from the manufacturer’s ERP, CRM and sales applications to produce real-time quotes based on a customer’s specific requirements while also supporting the manufacturer’s own efforts to improve production, save costs and increase margins.

Global accolades for analytics

In the recent BI Survey 18 by analyst firm BARC, SAP Analytics Cloud received top honours for business value, customer satisfaction, cloud business intelligence and innovation in the large international BI vendor peer group. In total, SAP received 23 top rankings and 44 leading positions across five peer groups, based on the world’s largest and most comprehensive survey of BI and analytics end-users.

Key findings from the report included that:

* 52% of respondents chose SAP Analytics Cloud because of the high-innovation capabilities of SAP;

* 87% rate the SAP Analytics Cloud price-performance ratio as good or excellent; and

* 96% would recommend SAP Analytics Cloud.

The power of SAP Analytics Cloud is that it is embedded into SAP applications through its integration services, giving it direct access to the SAP S/4HANA platform and its assorted business and metadata. By combining BI, planning and predictive analytics in one integrated cloud-based solution, businesses are bought closer to the ideals of the Intelligent Enterprise. Extensions such as the SAP Digital Boardroom enables business leaders to run scenarios across the entire management lifecycle – from strategy and budget to forecasts and financial close – with accurate insights and intelligence delivered to every employee that needs it.

Analytics are the window into the Intelligent Enterprise. It’s a powerful tool that provides a foundation for insightful action that delivers value across the enterprise. No organisation can afford to operate without it. And with the accessibility of SAP Analytics Cloud, no enterprise has to.