SAP BW on HANA - Overview

SAP Business Warehouse (BW) powered by SAP HANA helps you speed up data analysis by consuming data via a Data Warehouse (DW) for analytical reporting and data analysis. You can achieve key opportunities like real-time data integration and data modeling, and hence real-time BI reporting on large amount of data in the database.

SAP Business Warehouse continues to act like a powerful data warehouse tool to consolidate master data and provide flexible reporting options. With SAP HANA underneath BW system as a database, you can use a combination of DW capabilities with fast in-memory database to achieve performance improvements and exceptional modeling capabilities.

HANA in-memory database is much faster as compared to other common databases like Oracle, SQL Server, and hence DW performs much faster when powered by HANA as database underneath it. It combines the power of both the tools - BW Modeling and HANA in-memory computing engine to process huge amounts of data.

BW on HANA supports various exceptional databases and reporting capabilities that are not possible using other databases - like transformations and DSOs are moved to HANA database to provide much faster processing of data, data load performance, query processing and optimization, exceptional HANA modeling capabilities, etc.

Drawbacks of Using SAP BW with Other Databases

Following are the drawbacks when you use SAP BW with other databases such as Oracle, SQL Server, and IBM DB2.

  • Real-time Reporting − Using BW with other databases, you can’t perform realtime reporting as real-time data is not available in the data warehouse. Data is moved to Business Warehouse in batches and hence is not available for real-time reporting.

  • Implementing Structural Changes − To implement any structure changes, it is very time consuming and a tough task as compatibility is not available with other DB vendors. To implement any structure changes in Business Warehouse, it takes 2-12 months’ time.

  • Report Performance − You have to perform report performance optimization and tuning for each application.

  • Compatibility − Data in Business Warehouse is aggregated and materialized and you can’t get the data at different granularity level. HANA supports aggregations on the fly when the report is executed.

SAP BW Drawbacks

As mentioned, HANA is much faster as compared to other databases like Oracle and SQL Server. Hence, when you combine HANA capabilities with BW, you get an exceptional data processing and reporting features.

BW on HANA − Key Customers

As per SAP, organizations of all sizes and industries around the world are using the power of SAP HANA platform to transform their business and create new value. It includes a list of companies from all domains and regions who have adapted HANA as database and used in-memory power of HANA database with BW data warehouse features. You can see the list of all organizations who have adapted SAP BW on HANA using the following link.


Procter and Gamble

Procter & Gamble has adapted to SAP BW on HANA with the following business transformations.

  • Reliable, real-time reporting and Better Business Decisions with SAP Software and Services.

  • 55% database reduction from 36 TB to 16 TB.

  • 400% increase in data loading speeds.

  • 35,000 business users supported.

CenterPoint Energy

CenterPoint Energy uses SAP HANA as the foundation to realize their strategic vision.

  • 10 minutes to create marketing targets, down from four weeks.

  • 200% increase in productivity by replacing manual data replications with scheduled data loads into SAP HANA.

  • 98.8% faster predictive analytics engine runtime (from 90 seconds to 1 second).

  • 15% more calls handled by IVR rather than by agents.


Adidas leveraging SAP HANA platform stays ahead of consumer demand utilizing SAP Fashion Management application.

  • Complete visibility from the factory to the shop floor and e-commerce channels.

  • Point of sale data analysis that provides a better understanding of consumers.

  • Significantly faster nightly replenishment and allocation runs.

BW on HANA: Important Transactions

Following are the key transaction codes to be used in BW on HANA system.

RSA1 − To open BW workbench

RSMIGRHANADB − To convert in-memory optimized BW

SM59 − To configure RFC connection for SLT

Ltr − To configure Trusted RFC

RSPCM − To monitor periodic process chains

RSPC − To view the log for runs of a process chain

RSLIMO − BW Lean Modeler Test UI