Wednesday, March 18, 2009

How to learn SAP Business Intelligence (SAP BW). Tips and ideas for beginners.

I was always looking for effective ways of finding information and learning SAP Business Intelligence. Here are my seven tips how to learn SAP BI faster and have more fun with it.

1. Decide what you are going to learn.
Create your personal list of topics that you are going to learn. The list below may help you as a starting point.

- architecture of SAP NetWeaver BW 7.0
- functions of SAP BW analysis tools
- creating query: key figures, characteristics, hierarchies, variables, properties, exceptions
- using BEx Analyzer and BEx Information Broadcaster
- BW objects: InfoObjects, InfoProviders, MultiProviders, InfoSources, ...
- SAP BW data flow and ETL
- using predefined objects from the SAP Business Content

Expand the points. Discuss the list with experienced colleagues and find the most important subjects for you. Create a mind map to organize and visualize the list. Decide what the next topic to learn is and when you will start to learn it.

2. Gather all important links and learning materials two clicks away
Create bookmarks to all most often used resources in your favorite browser. Create links to websites, folders and local files like .pdf, .doc and .ppt documents. Keep the list short enough to easily find the appropriate link.

3. Use search engines in your address bar
Define access key to two or three search engines you use most extensively. To add a keyword to Firefox browser enter the site with the search engine, right click on the search form, choose Add a Keyword for this Search... choose a name, keyword and confirm the choice. Now you can use the search engine by entering the key and then your search terms in the address bar. I use keywords to SAP Forums, SAP Help and to this blog

To search data loading in this blog, I enter: bwa data loading in my Firefox address bar.

4. Learn by using multiple channels
Learning in multiple ways create more interconnection in your brain, is more efficient and effective. So listen to podcasts, read articles and blogs, discuss topics on-line and with your co-workers. Take notes, draw pictures and mind maps. All of this engage different senses and improve your memory. Taking tests will also help you to improve your learning. Find on-line tests and certification books to organize your knowledge.

5. Practice
You may gain practical experience by performing step-by-step scenarios and how to guides. The more exercise you do the more practical solutions you will have. If you do not have an access to a training system, you can find some commercial access.

6. Teach what you have learned to another person
Teaching is one of the best ways of learning. You remember and understand the subjects you have presented or explained to someone else much better then other topics. Start by describing what you have learned on SAP BW to your colleagues, creating a presentation and answering on-line questions.

7. Start a blog
Share your knowledge by writing a blog. Not like this one, but professional one. Start small, grow and have fun with sharing your experience! My favorite sites about writing for the web are A List Apart and SitePoint. Popular publishing platform that can help you to start blogging: Blogger, WordPress, TypePad.

1 comment:

Nancy Garero said...
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