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SAP Analytics Cloud Story

As one might already know, data blending is a concept where data from many different connections are linked. However, in SAP Analytics Cloud, data connections are available in two different variants. One is a live connection, and the other is the imported connection, also referred to as the acquired data. 

SAP Analytics Cloud allows its users to blend data from both connections. When considered from the context of SAP Analytics Cloud, any local file can generally be linked to any live connection. But what about blending data in the SAP Analytics Cloud story? Let’s find out. 

How to Blend Data in SAP Analytics Cloud Story?

Before getting into the steps and intricacies of data blending in the SAP Analytics Cloud story, we must understand its objective. Hence the primary objective here is to visualize and integrate the said data from the chart using the two data connection models. Hence the first is a live connection and queries from the SAP BW system. The second can be any generic locally stored Excel file that has to be imported into SAP SAC later. Hence let’s get started.      


Step 1: Laying the Groundwork 

The first thing that one needs to do is consider different fields and determine the one that can be used as a key field. Other than that, also make sure to determine the extent to which it is feasible to integrate the field with the existing data model of the system. In the current scenario, the key figure will be the count of employees, and the dimension will be the continent. Both of these have to be linked with the current live data. For the sake of the preceding model, one can use Region as the appropriate key field. The said field will then be appended with the localized Excel file, and the same can then be seamlessly linked with the dimension called continent.


Step 2: Data to be Imported to the SAP Analytics Cloud 

After you are done laying the fundamental groundwork for blending the data, it is time to make a switch to Data View. Open the dropdown on the left side and tap on the Add New Data option. One can then seamlessly select the local Excel file that will appear on the popup, automatically setting the checkmark, ensuring that the very first row can be used as the column’s header. To create any model, one can then adjust or transform the contents just as one would. Hence in case, the new model is saved, it will first be saved as private to ensure that only the creator can access it and just for the present story. One important thing to note here is that 200 MB Excel files from Microsoft can be uploaded, while a 2GB CSV can be uploaded without any hassle.   


Step 3: Link the Models       

Once the data is imported to SAP Analytics Cloud, it is time to determine if the key figures imported earlier are feasible for visualization. A detailed pie chart will be created for the purpose, and the visualized data representing the count of employees from each continent will appear on the screen. 

Now the user must first link the models to blend the said data with any preferred live connection. One can then find a “Link Dimensions” option on the upper menu in the area referred to as the “Data” area. A popup will now appear with a list of all the linked dimensions, and one can click on the “Add Model Link” option to add any novel link. 

Next, select the specific models for linking, which in this case would be the Region dimension. Also, make sure to look for any green-colored tick that depicts the confirmation of the link. One can then use the action button to alter the examples of the data, and the said action button can be found under the dropdown next to the model’s dimension. 

Ensure that the models are linked appropriately because this can otherwise distort the outcomes, ultimately resulting in the key figures being represented in an aggregated and consistent manner. Furthermore, in some instances, it might be necessary to link the description and not the ID. this will happen in scenarios where the description of the dimension is transferred into two different columns. One can again use the action button available beside the model selected.


Step 4: Blending the Data 

Once the steps mentioned above are completed, the ideal condition for blending the data is also created. However, the real blending of the data occurs in the final step, where the latest bar chart is initially added. Once done, one needs to add all existing models that are already linked to merge them seamlessly. 

One can now select the dimensions of the key figures from both models. Here the linked model will be represented by two rectangles overlapping each other, while the primary model will be represented using a blue circle. 

A bar chart will now appear where regions and the continent will be the selected dimension, and one can distinguish the linked dimensions with the symbol depicting the link. Further, the key figure here will be the count of employees as that existing data will be coming from the Excel file. 

One can then select the KPI Profit to view the key figures linked to the data from Excel. The action button next to the linked model can be used again to alter the blending direction. Lastly, one can also monitor the unlike dimensions entries and the actively linked dimensions by clicking on that all primary data tab. It is further recommended to leverage tables for checking all the values linked through blending. This will allow one to add and even check the key figures.   


Final Thoughts

Even though this post is primarily focused on blending data from an imported Excel file, one can leverage the same principle to integrate data with other models in the SAP Analytics Cloud planning solution. The only difference is that in the case of Excel files, one needs to ensure that the key fields are defined accurately. Even though this process might look simple, it may take a couple of attempts before using the appropriate blend format. Hence ensure consistent efforts for better outcomes.


Author Bio: Eric Smith is an SAP professional providing consulting services for SAP ERP system to his clients. With a knack for technology, he loves to write on the latest SAP developments and share his knowledge with the readers.