Using SAP Business ByDesign Analytics to Manage Financial Performance

Learn about the financial analytics capabilities available with SAP Business ByDesign. Financial and line managers can review financial performance, drill down into details, and pinpoint the source of performance deviations.

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    • Financial analytics with SAP Business ByDesign Analyzing financial performance. In this demo, you’ll see how the SAP Business ByDesign solution enables you to view financial performance by multiple dimensions and time periods, analyze real-time information through in-memory analytics, and drill down to pinpoint issues at the detail level. SAP Business ByDesign is an integrated solution that’s delivered on-demand through a single interface and supports core business processes including finance for small and midsize businesses. In this example, I’m the CFO at my company. I use the SAP Business ByDesign solution to check how the company is performing. In my HOME work center, I select “Overview” from the list of views. The HOME work center is configured to provide me with quick access to the information I frequently access, including my inbox containing alerts and notifications such as “My Top Worklists.” But today, I’m very interested in a preconfigured graphical report called “Profit Analysis- Company.” I can clearly see that the current year figures are down significantly from the previous year. Cost of goods sold and operating income are trending in a positive direction, however revenues are down significantly as is gross profit on sales. Clearly, I need to see more detail to determine what’s causing the operating loss. I click on the ACTIONS button and select “View Details.” This brings up an isolated view of the same analytic graph. By clicking on the VIEW TABLE icon, I can switch views to see the actual numbers in tabular form. But these summary numbers don’t tell me what I’m looking for, so I click on the EXPORT button and launch Microsoft Excel. Now, the same report is created in Excel. I double-check the figures. I still need more detail, so I click on the tab for SAP Business ByDesign on the Excel ribbon and open a new worksheet. I click on the INSERT REPORT icon and this brings up a menu of available reports that have been preconfigured in SAP Business ByDesign. Using the SEARCH field in the report menu, I locate the report I’m looking for, highlight it, and click INSERT REPORT. One of the key features of SAP Business ByDesign is its in-memory analytics, which stores critical data in main memory where it is continually refreshed. There’s no waiting for queries to update stale information up-to-the-minute information is always readily available. The data in main memory refreshes the Excel sheet and a new report is rendered. I click on the “Show Tools” icon in the Excel ribbon to bring up the report tools panel where I can begin editing the report. The panel allows me to choose the various parameters to include in the report. Currently, the report displays “Product Category,” but I also want to analyze the figures by geography. So I choose “Region” from the menu items and drag it into the “Row Labels” view to increase the detail in the report. After looking at the spreadsheet figures, I’ve determined that the variances are distinct across regions, and I want to isolate that in the report. I select “Product Category” and drag it out of the “Row Labels” view. Now I have a clear view of profitability across regions. And, I see that Michigan, which generates the second highest revenues for the company, also has the lowest profitability in the company as measured by gross margin and operating income − by a wide margin. Having pinpointed where the problem lies, I will notify my CEO and schedule a meeting with the general manager respon
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