Ok Google, meet SAP

14 November 2017

Chris Choy

Chris Choy

Consultant


The Bluefin wizards have been at it again at SAP TechEd 17 Barcelona: take Google Cloud Platform, SAP S/4HANA, SAP Cloud Platform and add a sprinkle of Firebase - here’s what you get...

A partnership made in heaven

It was billed as the “Partnership of the Decade”, when the strategic alliance of Google and SAP was revealed.  Today, at TechEd, Google made a raft of announcements, showing how firmly committed it is to the enterprise and proving that this relationship is as exciting as anticipated. 

It goes without saying that when Bluefin was presented with the opportunity to blend the cutting edge technologies of Google Cloud Platform (GCP), SAP S/4HANA and SAP Cloud Platform (SCP) we jumped at it….
 

Let’s play

Let’s be honest, TechEd provides Techies like us with the chance to really play with the latest and greatest in the SAP ecosphere.  Innovating, pushing the limits and getting creative is where our passion lies. Given the cool technologies we were working with, GCP, S/4HANA & SCP, we looked to solve a problem we’ve seen several customers experiencing recently.
 

Where’s the pointer?

Many organisations are adopting wall to wall dashboard displays to monitor business KPI’s and performance, however interacting with data is never as simple as it should be. Even with the latest touch screen technologies someone needs to manually locate the controls, find the pointer on screen, which is a little like trying to find a needle in a haystack on an 18m wide display, and finally, work out how to update the information on their dashboards. Our goal was to simplify this process to enable businesses to dynamically filter information within their Design Studio/ Lumira dashboards. 

What exactly did we build? 

We worked with a “dashboard approach”, starting with a dashboard/KPI design and building a solution from there.  Brainstorming, we looked at  how to combine GCP with SCP using Firebase as the data filtering mechanism. 

Our challenge was to create a Design Studio Dashboard with an SAP Fiori Overview Page running off an SAP S/4HANA instance with a SAP BusinessObjects frontend. Of course all of this tech would be running on the GCP and using Google Firebase as the middleware, and let’s not forget, the companion app which was to run within Google Chrome on an Android tablet. 

The end product featured a Design Studio dashboard with an embedded Fiori Overview Page. The overview page was created using Core Data Service (CDS) views and was integrated into Firebase enabling the dashboard to “listen” to any changes in Firebase.

A separate ‘companion’ app, which is run on a mobile phone or tablet, allows users to apply filters to the dashboard. Filtering data in the companion app updates the Firebase database which is then picked up by the dashboard and dynamically applied to the data sources, updating the display. 

We adopted Firebase hosting with Firebase Realtime Database to store filter parameters. This provided us with a robust flexible, adaptable data syncing engine that was secure, extendable and easy to set up. 

 

What’s in the SAP/Google relationship for you?

Leveraging the capabilities of both SAP and Google technologies has opened up the playing field for companies to streamline processes and offerings to their customers whilst driving down costs. Google’s investment in SAP’s ecosphere provides customers with a wider choice in public cloud services and the question is what comes next? Will Google and SAP work together to integrate Google’s Cloud offerings into SAP systems? The possibilities are endless and only time will tell.

I’m thrilled to see customers adopting the GCP as SAP and Google continue to write the story of the enterprise’s future in the cloud. 

If you’d like to see this all in action, drop by the Google stand at SAP TechEd 17 Barcelona!


 

About the author

Chris Choy

Consultant

Whilst working at Apple, Chris developed a passion for streamlining business processes through the use of mobile technologies. This passion has remained with him throughout his career. Chris boasts a broad range of skillsets ranging from SAP Fiori and SAP Cloud Platform development to Agile SCRUM Practices. 

Chris is a Mobile, UX and Development (MUD) Practice Lead focusing on Methodologies & Tools. As a Certified SCRUM Master (CSM) and SCRUM Developer (CSD), he has worked across a multitude of projects, which have gone on to win awards such as the 2016 SAP Quality Awards within the UKI (Gold) and EMEA (Bronze) regions.

Having been working with Bluefin since 2014, Chris has predominantly worked across all industries enabling organisations to migrate their IT infrastructure onto the Cloud, transforming their IT landscapes to better serve their customers.

Outside of work Chris is a Martial Arts Practitioner who actively enjoys learning, teaching and sharing his knowledge and skills.