A common feature among R/3 reporting systems is that they all collect data in special data tables. This is a preferred method for operational reporting due to real-time data acquisition from linked SAP modules. Several reporting systems derive data based on update rules.
External data can also be imported in the reporting information structures for consolidated information view.
These information systems use a variety of tools for presentation and analysis such as ABAP, ABAP Query, Report Writer/Painter, and LIS.
All information systems require in-depth R/3 configuration knowledge.
This is the most important reason that reporting requirements must be a part of overall OLTP business workflow-business rules.
Using linked SAP modules requires absolute integration with process configuration teams. The process requirements must be stable, because the workflow determines what data is captured based on a variety of states and conditions defined to meet business operations and analysis requirements.
SAP R/3 is primarily designed for a high transaction rate. Information processing in an OLTP and a data warehouse are very different. A few differentiating characteristics between an OLTP and a data warehouse are listed in Table 2-1. Data warehouses require a very different configuration due to large data volume and unpredictable data navigation schemes. It is impossible to configure an OLTP system as a full-featured data warehouse without having an impact on OLTP operations. Therefore, the nature of reporting on OLTP systems must be limited to support real-time operations and not historical reporting. The next section addresses reporting issues associated with R/3 information systems.
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