Do you need an SAP data mart, or an SAP data warehouse?
Do you need an SAP data mart, or a data warehouse? It depends if you need to deploy data across an enterprise, or need something more focused.
Do I need an SAP data mart, or an SAP data warehouse? What's the difference between the two?
Continue Reading This Article
Enjoy this article as well as all of our content, including E-Guides, news, tips and more.
There are so many data management architecture buzzwords these days: old school data warehouses, data marts, data lakes, logical data warehouses, and the list goes on.
In brief, a data warehouse is a very disciplined approach to managing data across an enterprise. Data warehousing attempts to establish a canonical version of an enterprise's data across business areas, data sources and time. This allows for powerful comparisons across the business in terms of an agreed-upon "'version of the truth," as well as comparisons between past and current performance. The cost is that this type of data management is labor-intensive, not particularly agile and usually bound to a particular point of view that has been agreed on by a critical mass of stakeholders across a company.
For more on SAP and data management
What are SAP's data warehousing options?
What is the SAP Business Information Warehouse? (SAP BW)?
How does SAP help companies manage big data?
A data mart is usually a more focused implementation. Like a data warehouse, a data mart often uses data from multiple sources and spans a large time period, but it tends to be developed in the service of a particular business problem. Because of this focus, a data mart is often able to be better and more quickly adapted to addressing that particular issue than an enterprise-wide data warehouse. The downside is that different data marts will tend to give different answers to questions that appear to be the same, which can cause confusion within a business. This happens mostly because different data marts will define metrics slightly differently, or from different points of view, even if those metrics have the same name. For example, a tax data mart will often view the business as a collection of legal entities, each with their own revenue, cost of goods and overhead expenses. But a management data mart may view the business as a collection of functions. The answer to the question, "Where is value created in the business?" may be very different depending on which data mart one is looking at.
So do you need a data mart or a data warehouse? If you're asking the question, you should probably start with a data mart or something similar in scope. But start to research and understand data warehousing concepts. You'll soon begin to recognize problems that data warehouses are designed to address, and you'll then be able to make a more informed decision regarding whether it's time to implement a more comprehensive data management strategy, or if you will continue to get the most bang for your buck with smaller, more focused data marts.
Dig Deeper on SAP Business Warehouse
Related Q&A from Ethan Jewett
How do I avoid having too many Fiori tiles?
The design rule of thumb is to keep the Launchpad tile count under 20. But what about power users who need to launch more applications? Here are ... Continue Reading
How do the various SAP Fiori Launchpad versions differ?
The way Launchpad versions relate to each other and to SAPUI5 versions isn't intuitive, and both affect app compatibility and access to newer ... Continue Reading
What are SAPUI5 libraries, and how should developers use them?
If you want to get more serious about developing UI5 apps, you need to know how the libraries fit into the broader architecture, as well as their ... Continue Reading