The SAP Datasphere BW Bridge: Easing the Journey to the Cloud for SAP BW Customers

If you have an existing SAP BW or BW/4HANA on premise data warehouse, you are likely well aware that it didn’t just appear overnight fully loaded with data and analytics solutions but rather was developed with lots of thought, care, and attention.  With the advent of all things cloud, including data warehouses, what does it mean to all the accretive knowledge, business logic, and code that is encompassed in our existing solutions?

With the marketing and media attention on the cloud, we are bombarded with all the benefits that a cloud solution can bring.   SAP has delivered a top-notch, long-term cloud data warehouse and analytics solution set in SAP Datasphere (SAP DSP) and SAP Analytics Cloud (SAP SAC).  This solution set provides a business focused, innovative, and fully cloud based BI solution.  SAP DWC is the strategic, target solution for all data warehouse uses in SAPs statement of direction. And while that all sounds like a wonderful panacea, it can be a bit daunting to think about how to get from point a (our on-prem solution) to point b (a cloud DW solution).

The Bridge Concept

Fortunately, SAP has come up with a practical and innovative solution to make it much easier for their customers to start their cloud journey to the SAP DSP solution:  the SAP DSP Bridge.   At the heart of it, the bridge is a tool that customers can leverage to 1) move at their own pace to the cloud and 2) at the same time leverage their existing BW base in the cloud quickly.

There are some key guiding principles that the SAP DSP Bridge solution embodies:

  • Reuse. Reduce, reuse, recycle!  SAP has recognized that redoing work that has already been done is not a fan favorite.  After all, there was a lot of effort put into carefully crafting all the current SAP BW and SAP BW/4HANA data warehouses out there. 
  • Connect to data sources with confidence and in a familiar manner.
  • Innovate! Leverage the benefits of the cloud to innovate sooner rather than later with our existing SAP BW assets.

What the Bridge Does

The SAP BW Bridge transfers key elements of an existing BW environment into a custom space inside SAP DSP so departments can share access to critical data.  With SAP BW Bridge, key content, data, staging, customization and connectivity is transferred to a purpose-built space inside of data warehouse cloud, where it can now be leveraged by other data users as if it was any other data space inside of the DSP environment.

  • Reuse, not rebuild data models, transformations; and customizations to protect investments
  • Accelerate time-to-value with 70-80% reuse of existing BW artifacts with transfer tools
  • Capitalize on your existing expertise with access to a familiar modeling and development environment

Unlike other cloud solutions, this preserves the use of most customizations and custom data objects from BW.

What the Bridge Enables

Once the bridge to the DSP is enabled for your BW solution, you gain new abilities to work with your data assets including:

  • Retain familiar connectivity to SAP data and semantics efficiently with ABAP-level extractors, staging area and understanding of SAP data and relationships 
  • Extend your data reach easily to new data sources and take advantage of the Data Marketplace to combine SAP and external data for broader insights
  • Connect data efficiently across clouds and hybrid landscapes without unnecessary data movement – unmatched data virtualization across multiple clouds

This makes it easier to transition your workflows to leverage the power of new technologies such as SAP’s upcoming Data Marketplace.

To summarize, SAP BW Bridge allows you to retain much of the power of your original BW environment inside SAP DSP quickly.  You can start reaping the benefits of the DSP cloud platform even before fully migrating to it.  The bridge tool allows you to chart your own journey and timeline to migrate to the cloud without forcing you into a big bang cutover.

This tool will help us all in our mission to breakdown business silos and empower users with the latest information, all running on the proven HANA database management system, designed specifically to take on today’s most challenging, multi-model analytics problems. 

With SAP BW Bridge, you gain the power of bringing your systems together as part of SAP’s Business Technology Platform. This powerful platform was engineered by SAP not only to meet the critical needs of today’s processing but to grow with you to meet your business’s challenges for years to come. 

If you’d like to know more or would like a bit of help charting your journey with the SAP BW Bridge and SAP DSP, we’d love to help.  Contact us using the form below.

– By Merri Beckfield