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Faster reports through SAP BW consolidation

SachsenEnergie AG consolidates systems on BW/4HANA

Future prospects for SAP BW

SachsenEnergie AG is the largest municipal utility company in Eastern Germany. The company was formed in 2021 from the merger of DREWAG (Stadtwerke Dresden GmbH) and ENSO (Energie Sachsen Ost AG). DREWAG and ENSO turned to SAP to manage their financial processes – both vis-à-vis partners and service providers and vis-à-vis customers.

Business Warehouse as a central database

The creation of invoices, evaluations and forecasts is carried out via SAP ERP or SAP's Business Warehouse (BW). Numerous processes are supported by the SAP industry solution for energy companies, ISU, such as inventory data for contracts, electricity billing, recording meter readings and much more. The Business Warehouse thus plays an important role in SachsenEnergie's business activities. Employees start queries for evaluations via a suitable front end. Bex, SAP BO and Tableau are used for this purpose.

The challenge

With the merger of the two companies, it made sense to consolidate the two separate BW systems in order to reduce operating expenses. At the same time, SAP announced the end of maintenance for the BW releases in use. Consolidation on a modern SAP HANA environment was, therefore, an obvious choice. However, this also meant that a modern solution had to be found for the front end to map the existing queries. The familiar workflows, processes and functionalities should be retained when switching to new technology. SachsenEnergie AG decided to tackle the transformation and consolidation together with T-Systems.

T-Systems provided us with expert advice in the consolidation process, professional support in integrating stakeholders and in implementation, thus enabling a smooth transition to the new SAP world.

Marko Musiat, Head of BI, SachsenEnergie AG

The solution

It was announced that the maintenance of BW systems would be stopped by the end of 2020, so the partners had 9 months to complete the transformation. They decided to take a greenfield approach. In an agile project, the migration to a standard BW 7.5 on HANA took place. The migration of the existing BW objects to SAP BW/4HANA was carried out using an in-place conversion. During the migration, the systems were also cleaned to remove old data and queries that were no longer used. The data models were also updated and consolidated for use with SAP HANA. The migration took place smoothly, without users noticing anything about the changeover.

After the migration was complete, the project team turned its attention to the front end. The tools used there had also reached the end of their life cycle. SAP had also announced the discontinuation of support here, e.g. for SAP BO, Business Explorer/Web App Designer, on which many internal tools were based. Lumira would also no longer be available. T-Systems evaluated various future options for the front end for the customer's project team. Proofs of concept for Microsoft Power BI, Tableau and the SAP Analytics Cloud (SAC) were also set up for this purpose. In the end, SachsenEnergie chose SAC, which can be integrated perfectly with the new SAP BW on HANA system and offers the best data quality. The existing SAP BO licenses were converted to SAC licenses in order to optimize the cost of implementing the new tools.

Benefits for the customer

With the introduction of the new BW platform, SachsenEnergie AG achieved enormous performance gains for the evaluation of mass data. The speed of query evaluations increased significantly, for example, for monthly business forecasts. At the same time, operating expenses for personnel were significantly reduced, as only one system had to be maintained. Above all, SachsenEnergie is pushing the door to the future wide open with the new BW on HANA. New functionalities will become available, and the company will gain future security. 

The same applies to the new front-end setup. With the SAP Analytics Cloud, established queries can continue to be used, and new potential for the business can be exploited. The functionality of the new front end is significantly higher than the combination of BEx Tools, SAP BO and Tableau. It also allows the processing of data from sources such as Salesforce, SAP S/4HANA and power.cloud. At the same time, the company is standardizing its front-end landscape with this initiative.

About SachsenEnergie AG

SachsenEnergie AG is the largest municipal utility company in Eastern Germany. With 3,300 employees, SachsenEnergie supplies around 600,000 customers with energy, water, energy-related services and modern infrastructure.

As a partner of the region and the city of Dresden, more than 160 municipalities rely on SachsenEnergie's supply concepts. This also includes offerings related to modern municipal energy management, renewable energies, electromobility and telecommunications. SachsenEnergie AG is thus an important factor in local value creation.

SachsenEnergie AG

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