What is SAP Predictive Analytics?
SAP Predictive Analytics is business intelligence software from SAP that is designed to enable organizations to analyze large data sets and predict future outcomes and behaviors. For example, SAP Predictive Analytics can help make sense of big data and the Internet of Things by building predictive analytics models to identify unforeseen opportunities, better understand customers, and uncover hidden risks.
Creating user-focused predictive analytics
Before building a predictive model, however, analysts must transform data into a format that the analytical engines can process. Traditionally this was done by developing scripts and algorithms manually and then applying these to the data. This was often technically difficult, tedious and error-prone. As a result, predictive analytics was performed primarily by highly specialized data scientists. Like competing products from IBM, Oracle, SAS and others, SAP Predictive Analytics is meant to automate the process and make it easier for business users and data analysts to create predictive models.
Components of SAP Predictive Analytics
SAP Predictive Analytics was first released in 2015 and combines the features of two previously separate analytics products. The first of these is SAP Predictive Analysis (note: not Predictive Analytics) which SAP released in 2012. It is an advanced analysis tool primarily for data scientists that automated manual analysis. With Predictive Analysis, users can analyze and visualize data via pre-built algorithms written in the open-source statistical programming language, and then chain the models graphically to perform complex analysis.
The second part of SAP Predictive Analytics is SAP InfiniteInsight, a product SAP absorbed when it acquired the company KXEN in 2013. InfiniteInsight automates data preparation, predictive modeling, and scoring, which can help business users analyze data without manual modeling. InfiniteInsight algorithms take care of the data preparation and modelling work usually done by data scientists.
SAP Predictive Analytics unites the two products in one user interface. Features are accessed through a home screen similar to that of InfiniteIsight, with two tabs for all of the features from the two products: one labeled Automated Analytics, for accessing InfiniteInsight, and Expert Analytics for Predictive Analysis. It works with the SAP BusinessObjects BI platform and connects with most data environments, including spreadsheets, unstructured text files, and proprietary files formats like SAS and SPSS, according to SAP. Integration with SAP HANA can return real-time predictive analysis.
SAP Predictive Analytics competitors include offerings from SAS, IBM, Oracle, Angoss Software, RapidMiner, Revolution Analytics, Salford Systems, StatSoft, and others.