Mar 4, 2014

How 2: Eliminate HANA Mid-Project Crisis

... and post go-live crisis

Just like people have a midlife crisis so do many BI projects and BW-on-HANA projects.  We see them all around. These HANA mid-project crisis can be extremely painful, incredibly disruptive and demoralizing for the Core team and project owners all at the same time. Many traditional architects believe this to be inevitable but this does not have to be at all. 

A HANA project crisis is like an earthquake. An earthquake that starts first with the HANA sticker shock which is like a release of a financial tectonic plate and this can be followed by leveraging traditional approaches to a net new platform called HANA.

This is a brief on how one can totally avoid HANA crisis altogether. Arranged as concern and followed by best practice recommendations

  1. Sticker Shock: The overall cost of HANA is rather like a soft-mirage that can be professionally altered. Recommendations: The right 'neutral' advisors can today guarantee to reduce the HANA migration costs by 40%. This translates to 40% lower initial HW and SW costs, 40% shorter time to migrate and 40% reduction in annual support costs with HW and SW partners. In my last project we managed to reduce the cost by 72% but that was a very large BW installation with a BWA of 50 plus blades.  Recommendation 2: Ask for the Near-Net-Zero HANA Migration workshop and save yourself millions of dollars today.
  2. Leadership: The most critical decisions in any HANA project is what the Project owner and Steering Committee sign their futures on. Recommendation 1 is to get yourself a director for HANA with true goal being – Business Value Owner. If you are looking for a new CIO then let that person be HANA focused
  3. Think Custom RDS Solutions: Some of the highest business benefits I have realized to customers is in building custom business solutions that are owned, designed and driven by business owners and users. Recommendation: Ask for a custom RDS solution if current RDS solutions do not exactly fit your needs. Recommendation: Goal is (1) Design Thinking; (2) Business Opportunity identification; (3) Business Architecture and build.
  4. Gartner 2013: Gartner clearly lays down the roadmap for successful HANA migrations. ““This is a time of accelerating change, where your current IT architecture will be rendered obsolete. You must lead through this change, selectively destroy low impact systems, and aggressively change your IT cost structure. This is the New World of the (big-data), the next age of computing.” Mr. Sondergaard, Gartner Sr. Analyst. Recommendation: Get your HANA Business Value Architect well before you being to fall into the trap of having taken a decision
  5. Gartner 2003-12: Between the lines Gartner clearly states that there is very high probability that 50% to 70% of the reports in your Production BI environment are not being used or will never be used by business users. So there is ZERO benefit of accelerating a 700 second query to 1 second if no one needs it – critical strategic question. Recommendation: Ask for the IQDCT workshop to eliminate the Gartner’s BI nightmare
  6. Crisis is always planned: These mid-life crisis or post go-live crises are driven by executive naivety and need to be strategized accordingly.  Lack of professional HANA planning is the same as planning for a crisis. The old adage ‘Plan your work and only then work your plan” still stands true. The executives must own planning or lack of planning and its strategic impacts. . Recommendation: Get yourself the 2hr executive HANA workshop and access to the HANA executive checklists by each phase of HANA project and save yourself millions in the short term.

The key to avoiding these earthquakes and tectonic shifts is to release all the defect tensions prior to commencing the HANA project. Recently a net-new BW-on-HANA manager asked when should the BW team be on-boarded to a HANA project and here was my recommendation to them

  1. The full team only when you are at 80% ERP/ECC Configuration
  2. The BW on HANA Business Architect as the ECC HANA as the Project starts – this is to make sure that:-
    1. The reporting objects are imbedded into the ECC configurations
    2. Leverage the new Operational Reporting platform RDS for True Real-time reporting from ECC
    3. Executives understand the strategic impact of their decisions in HANA decisions. Start with executive 2x2 hr BoH Strategic HANA workshops
    4. Remember Gartner on ‘What got you here will not get you there”. HANA needs new architecture, transformations, data access and strategic planning. If your partner is using traditional BW methodology on HANA you are traveling on a path that is assured for 50% to 70% failure. If you use traditional methodologies and standards you will have signed off to wasting over 50-70% of your budget, and thus assets

By releasing the tension regularly and periodically, i.e. initial workshops followed by periodic Quality Assurance reviews of plans, methodologies, standards and processes we can eliminate all changs of failure.

By releasing the tension regularly, it isn't disruptive or painful. It becomes empowering and constructive.
The new ‘Binformed’, ‘BIOnTrac’ and ‘IQDCT’ workshops  to support and help executive stakeholders clearly understand the strategic ramifications of their decisions today with actual business cases and examples

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