Dell is expanding its long-time partnership with enterprise software maker SAP with the launch of an innovation lab designed to give businesses the tools they need to assess, develop and test workloads for SAP's HANA in-memory analytics offering.
Dell Services' SAP HANA lab will enable customers to put as much as 30 terabytes of data onto configurations of Dell data center hardware for prototyping projects or proofs-of-concept (PoCs) and run workloads to get a better understanding of what they can gain by using a combination of technologies from both vendors.
"The lab environment for SAP HANA offers our customers the ability to test their current and future SAP applications and benchmark their performance to facilitate rapid adoption within their organization," Simon Spence, global director of the Dell SAP practice for Dell Services, said in a statement.
Dell Services' Innovation Lab for SAP HANA is the latest offering from a partnership between the two companies that goes back more than two decades, according to officials with both vendors. Dell offers a broad range of SAP software and services that can be deployed on Dell infrastructure products or in the Dell Cloud.
Dell also offers application and platform modernization services that are designed to help enterprises adopt new SAP applications and platforms like SAP HANA into their infrastructure environments. In addition, Dell's managed services for SAP environments touch on everything from domain expertise and methodologies in SAP technologies to a global service delivery model and cloud computing capabilities.
With the innovation lab, Dell Services officials said SAP HANA offers enterprises a lot of benefits, including the ability to collect and process massive amounts of data in seconds and giving users almost immediate insights that they can use to make business decisions quickly. Such capabilities are increasingly important in a business world that is moving to the cloud and generating huge amounts of data that need to be managed and analyzed.
Dell last year began reselling SGI UV 300H servers to help bring SAP HANA to more scale-up environments, and in May SAP officials said that Dell was one of a number of partners in its HANA Cloud Platform program.
At the same time, businesses that want to move to a SAP HANA environment will need to spend money to get it going, and officials must be able to justify the expense by proving the business value, Dell officials said. That's where the innovation lab comes in.
The SAP HANA in-memory platform is the foundation of the lab, and customers can use it to create a personalized experience that touches on such mission-critical workloads as sales, finance, manufacturing and procurement. They can work on solutions, benchmark performance results and fuel adoption within their own environments, and can use it to accelerate applications like analytics and enterprise resource planning (ERP), officials said.
With the innovation lab, Dell Services invests in all the SAP HANA licenses and underlying hardware infrastructure, giving customers the necessary tools to access and evaluate a SAP HANA solution before they decide whether to buy it. In addition, in part of the lab, customers can develop and test their own solutions in the environment for short periods of time. In addition, they use it temporarily for upgrading solutions or rolling out projects.
Dell Services officials also will offer consulting services through workshops that are designed to help customers on such steps as identifying potential value in a SAP HANA deployment, creating a business case for it, provide specific industry solutions and develop plans for an easy migration, Dell Services officials said.