Our team at Theobald Software has recently partnered with Snowflake to build a showcase for integrating SAP ERP data into a Snowflake cloud data warehouse. The solution was based on an actual customer case and is described in this blog.
The customer was looking to replace an existing on-premises data warehouse and analytics toolset with primarily cloud-based services. Critical business data would have to be sourced from SAP ECC (on-premise), in addition to data stored in various databases or flat files.
The customer was also looking for a fully automated process to bring data from different sources together in a Snowflake cloud data warehouse. The data load process had to be fast and support incremental data loads, to ultimately enable near real-time insights for the business users.
SAP Data Extraction
The customer used our Xtract Universal product to extract data from their SAP ECC system. Incremental data feeds are enabled with the built-in Table and DeltaQ components in Xtract Universal. The Table component is easy to configure and delivers performant data extraction from even the largest SAP tables. The DeltaQ component provides reliable delta feeds, based on SAP’s native DataSource extractors.
Once the data is extracted from SAP, it can be directly stored in one of currently 20+ supported target environments. It’s a direct pass-through of the data from SAP into the target. In the process, SAP data types are mapped to the data types of the target environment. While Xtract Universal can write SAP data directly into a database or data warehouse table, a Blob storage was chosen in this scenario for fast transfer of the data into the cloud. The DDLs to create the proper tables in Snowflake can be auto-generated in Xtract Universal. An initial, full data load from the Blob container can be done in Snowflake with the COPY command. Subsequent, incremental data loads can be done with a MERGE statement.
The SAP data extracts and the load process in Snowflake can be fully automated, using utilities like the Windows Task Scheduler or Cron, or your scheduling tool of choice. This can also work in conjunction with an existing ETL tool for centralized monitoring and management of all data movement processes.
Feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in more details of this solution or send us your questions and comments.