IBM Retail | SAP retail solutions on IBM infrastructure


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The Retail Trilogy provides SAP retail solutions on IBM infrastructure, which can assist in all phases of your business. Read this PDF to find out more on efficient POS data management, supply chain planning, and retail information analysis.

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IBM Retail | SAP retail solutions on IBM infrastructure

  2. 2. Table of Contents 3 Introduction 4 background to the Retail Trilogy Project 9 Test design and Scope 15 Results: Highlights of Proof-points 21 Choice of IbM Infrastructure for Retail 26 SAP for Retail: A Comprehensive, Integrated Solution 27 Conclusions
  3. 3. Introduction Many leading retail companies have recognized the value of implementing an SAP Retail solution on IBM infrastructure. IBM and SAP have responded to the needs of the retail industry by completing a comprehensive proof of technology for the latest versions of the mission-critical SAP Retail applications on IBM infrastructure. The results are relevant for small to very large businesses. High volume point-of-sale data, combined with the increasing requirement for transaction data to be turned into actionable business information, represent ongoing challenges for retailers of all sizes. These challenges demand extreme performance and scalability from the supporting applications and IT infrastructure. Additionally, retailers are looking for reassurance that they can match the application with the infrastructure that best meets their performance, reliability, and cost requirements. Together, IBM and SAP initiated a rigorous, multi-month, multi-million dollar proof of technology project for the industry. Our overall aim was to demonstrate the fusion of application with infrastructure in a combined solution for the retail industry. Until now, comprehensive and up-to-date performance and configuration information has not been readily available. Without this, retailers have not been able to optimize their investment for the core time critical elements of the SAP for Retail portfolio spanning multiple systems on a choice of platforms. These documented tests enable our customers to optimize their investment in SAP for Retail running on IBM platforms. We conducted this extensive project, fusing application and infrastructure, to: • Prove the scalability of defined SAP Retail industry processes on IBM technology • Optimize the architecture and conduct tests that would provide guidance for detailed sizing and configuration • Optimize the application configuration for common high volume retail scenarios. This solution brief and the accompanying white paper lay out the background, approach, and results of the study. The results convincingly demonstrate the viability and value that the fusion of SAP and IBM technology brings to the retail industry. IBM and SAP are ready to support your organization in assuring your technology investment. 3
  4. 4. Background to the Retail Trilogy Project A trilogy of SAP components to prove Every retailer is unique in terms of their data volumes and specific implementation choices around an SAP application footprint, and yet remarkably similar in many respects. They are confronted by the same requirements to meet deadlines and service level agreements, and to do so within the constraints of cost-effective IT configurations. Until now, comprehensive and up-to-date performance and configuration information has not been readily available. IBM and SAP have now provided concrete proof points using industry relevant business volumes. SAP provides retailers with industry-leading solutions to assist in all phases of their business. For this set of performance tests, we focused on the highest volume, most compute-intensive portions of the solution. These are the functional components that produce the greatest time-critical processing demands, and as a result are where our largest customers most desire extensive testing of the latest versions of the solution sets from SAP and IBM (Figure 1). Insight Into All Areas Of Your Business Streamline Supply Chain Operations Anticipate Shopper Needs Ensure an Inspired Shopping Experience A Solid Foundation for Corporate Operations Figure 1: SAP Retail: a comprehensive, integrated solution The tests focused on three areas that present time-critical and scalability concerns for our clients, and exhaustively exercised the related “trilogy” of components of the SAP solution to discover or confirm configuration best practices that we can now share with our customers: • SAP® Point of Sale Data Management application (POS DM) manages the flow of information between store devices and servers in store, and back office • SAP Merchandising for Retail, which is the Retail version of SAP Enterprise Resource Planning application (ERP), is the core solution for corporate data and business processes, within the SAP for Retail solution portfolio • SAP Forecasting and Replenishment application (F&R) is the powerful engine that manages the retail supply chain. Note: This Solution Brief will use the abbreviations indicated in parentheses above for sake of limited space in graphics. One additional abbreviation to be used: BW = SAP NetWeaver Business Warehouse (SAP NetWeaver BW) 4
  5. 5. daily prerequisites to success IBM and SAP recognize that retailers are looking for a series of operational assurances in three focus areas at the core of retail IT processes: • Efficient management of POS data • Effective overnight store replenishment cycles • Timely order management and consistent data. In order to realize the benefits of your SAP Retail solution, there are a series of daily operations that need to be executed in an effective and timely manner across different integrated SAP functional components (Figure 2). Insight into Shopper demand requires: • Efficient POS Data Management • Validated consumption data for supply chain planning • Provision of data for analysis. Anticipate Shopper Needs presupposes: • Control of accurate data and synchronization across systems • Up to date inventory management • Consistent management of prices, promotions and assortments • Timely ordering, including orders from warehouse/distribution centers. Streamline Supply Chain Operations with: • Daily forecasting for trends, events and seasonality • Automated replenishment based on stock information, supplier restrictions and factors influencing demand. POS DM Insight Into Shopper Demand  Efficient POS Data Management  Validated consumption data for supply chain planning  Provision of data for analysis ERP Anticipate Shopper Needs  Control of accurate data F&R & synchronization across systems Streamline Supply Chain Operations  Up to date inventory  Daily forecasting for trends, management events & seasonality  Consistent management  Automated replenishment based of prices, promotions & on stock information, supplier assortments restrictions & factors influencing  Timely ordering, demand including orders from warehouse/distribution centers Figure 2: Daily prerequisites to success 5
  6. 6. goals of the Retail Trilogy joint project Together IBM and SAP initiated a rigorous, multi-month, multi-million dollar proof of technology project for the retail industry. Our overall aim was to demonstrate the fusion of application with infrastructure in a combined solution for retail-specific applications. The overall goals were to: • Prove the scalability of defined SAP Retail industry processes on IBM technology • Optimize the architecture and conduct tests that would provide guidance for detailed sizing and configuration • Optimize the application configuration for common high volume retail scenarios. The capacity requirements In order to measure capacity requirements the test scenarios were monitored and scaled up incrementally to ultimately represent a retailer with five distribution centers, 2,385 stores, up to 75,000 articles per store and two years of historical sales data. POS Inbound consumption data represented up to 34.86 million unique article/store combinations, resulting in 17.43 million purchase order lines. Retailers come in many sizes and forms. The Trilogy project took this variety into consideration. Different store types and profiles were created, from small shops with an average of 2000 Stock Keeping Units (SKUs), up to hyper markets with tens of thousands of active SKUs. Figure 3 recaps the distribution of number of articles (SKUs) included in each of the 2,385 stores. Distribution of Stores via Articles 120 100 Number of Stores 80 60 40 20 0 0 10000 20000 30000 40000 50000 60000 70000 80000 Number of Articles per Store Figure 3: Distribution of articles over 2,385 stores 6
  7. 7. Focus on the store replenishment cycle Given the challenges outlined above, the tests were defined around specific processes. Figure 4 shows the main sequence of steps involved in managing the store replenishment cycle. Consumption data from stores is aggregated for processing. To exercise the critical overnight processing, all three major SAP Retail components needed to be tested for scalability and performance: • POS DM • ERP • F&R. The most demanding aspects of each of the components were tested individually, then an integrated scenario was tested with high volume, concurrent processing throughout the entire time-critical replenishment cycle. Capture Trigger Store consumer data: Replenishment POS DM POS Data Planning F&R processing & Upload Update stocks Start order across supply fulfilment: chain: Post Create store goods orders for receipts internal & external supply Update stocks across supply chain: Start supply chain Post goods issues execution: Create ERP in Distribution deliveries and Centers transport orders Figure 4: Demand-driven supply chain in retail – full cycle Centers 7
  8. 8. Critical time window processing The substantial workload must be executed within a defined production time window, with system resources optimized to run at peak efficiency, handling maximum volumes. During this critical phase of processing there is synchronization between POS DM, ERP and F&R. There is no margin for degraded performance or a system outage that would impact next-day deliveries. Figure 5 illustrates the processing steps (in orange) that typically take place during the critical time window. Time-critical Not Time- Release and send Order Proposals from F&R to ERP Send Consumption data from POS DM to F&R Process Consumption data in F&R Not Time-critical critical Create Outbound Deliveries in ERP Send IDocs from POS DM to ERP FRP-Run in F&R Create IDocs in POS DM Create Orders in ERP Summarise non- Summarise non-aggregated sales data in POS DM aggregated sales data in POS DM Write non-aggregated Write non-aggregated sales data to sales data to POS DM Tlog tables POS DM Tlog tables Post Warehouse Post Store Update Process IDocs Post Warehouse Goods Issues in Goods Receipts MD, Stock, Goods Issues ERP in ERP OP in F&R in ERP in ERP 06.00 12.00 18.00 24.00 06.00 12.00 Figure 5: Critical time window overview 8
  9. 9. Test Design and Scope It is possible to conduct performance “benchmark” tests in laboratory conditions that do not reflect realistic customer scenarios. This was not the case for the Trilogy project. Customers can be very confident in the results of this proof of technology as standard application configurations were used that represent normal, real life, very high volume retail business processes. The testing confirmed and augmented SAP best practice configuration and system sizing guidelines, which are available to all customers. Optimized SAP Retail components Real life scenarios monitored by experts A cornerstone of the joint proof of technology tests was the direct involvement of SAP expert application staff to monitor the application behavior, and IBM experts to monitor the underlying architecture to identify and correct potential bottlenecks in the application. This streamlining activity ensured optimum application throughput while maximizing the utilization of the features of the supporting infrastructure. It is important to note that the components and configuration throughout our testing represented authorized and supported elements of the SAP and IBM solutions for retail and were consistent with our joint understanding of best practice for large-scale retail. This was a test of practical application of the SAP software under common but large scale business conditions not an abstract to prove scale alone. Choice of IbM infrastructure Allowing customers platform choice The SAP architecture is flexible and runs on all IBM platforms. In practice, retail landscapes often include a mix of different complementary applications and infrastructure that must be accommodated. Many retail customers are running their SAP solution on UNIX platforms. Often these UNIX platforms are combined with mainframes, so it was vital to provide valuable insights and guidance to customers of both. This proof of technology spans both the major IBM infrastructure platforms. demonstrating how IbM technology delivers results The IBM servers and infrastructure deployed were critical to meeting the extreme challenges of these tests. These leading IBM technologies also provide the most complete capabilities to meet customer non-functional requirements, such as high availability, continuous operations, accounting compliance, security, automated administration and more. Showing the inherent scalability of the database Regardless of platform, IBM database management systems are highly tuned with SAP software for high performance, high availability and scalability for SAP applications. This tuning is an ongoing activity by IBM and SAP development teams, who provide a wealth of expertise in matching functionality to application requirements for new industry challenges such as these. 9
  10. 10. Test infrastructure deployed For Phase One of the tests, all three SAP components were installed on POWER6 595 (see Figure 6). The database DB2 on AIX shared resources with the application servers. This allowed tests to take full advantage of all the functionality benefits of the solution stack, notably resource sharing on POWER6, plus data compression and multi-dimensional clustering functionalities using DB2 LUW database technology. PowerVM enables the flexible allocation of resources to dynamically adjust server capabilities from small to very large environments. This was the ideal basis for testing the individual component scalability and performance during the Retail Trilogy project and ideal for load consolidation in production environments. The high-end IBM System Storage DS8300 storage server used high speed disks and fiber infrastructure. For Phase Two of the tests, the overall capacity was increased with the addition of an IBM System z server as database server (Figure 7). The application servers remained on POWER6 595, while the databases were migrated to System z, using the same storage technology. This enabled scale-out of the application by freeing resources for additional application server capacity and consolidating the database servers on System z. This step increases capacity as well as adds further protection through the continuous availability capability of the System z. System z workload management provides the means of consolidating distinct workloads and ensuring service levels for the individual SAP application servers. This functionality was exploited to achieve increased scalability of the integrated solution in the final massive scale out, using multiple high-end application servers. POS DM ERP F&R Application Servers on POWER6 595 Phase 1 DB Server POWER6 595 IBM System Storage DS8300 turbo Figure 6: Phase one test infrastructure Figure 7: Phase two test infrastructure POS DM ERP F&R Application Servers on POWER6 595 Phase 2 DB Server System z IBM System Storage DS8300 turbo Figure 7: Phase two test infrastructure 10
  11. 11. Proof point testing To gather the information necessary to address industry requirements for different size retail customers and verify results for the end- to-end, integrated SAP solution, a variety of technical tests were defined and executed: • Establish scalability by component: Good scalability means that processing time can be reduced by increasing infrastructure capacity, while limited scalability means that processing time is constrained. • Ensure consistency and linearity by component: Ensure that when increasing data volumes, the volumes are processed in a predictable way with regard to time and resources. This verification helps ensure ample room for customer growth and reduces potential production risks. • Test high-load capability by component: Measure the high volume and massively parallel capability of individual components. This establishes the maximum throughput given all test resources. • Integrate all components on the critical path: Test target volumes for critical path steps in a real business context by running all process components within the available capacity as in production environments. A trilogy of components to be tested first individually As the project name reflects, this proof of technology covers three key components of the replenishment cycle. The project focuses on each solution individually and then looks at the interaction of all three solutions and the overall replenishment business process. POS dM As shown in Figure 8, POS DM receives sales data, executes master data checks for stores and products to ensure that only consistent data is processed downstream, then prepares and aggregates sales information for ERP and F&R. SAP POS Data Management is specifically designed for high-performance upload of POS data and enables subsequent analysis of the data. The key steps selected for the test scope were: • Processing of non-aggregated sales data • Creation of aggregated sales Intermediate Document (IDoc). An IDoc is a “container” for exchanging data between SAP components, and between SAP and non-SAP systems • Sending IDocs to ERP • Sending consumption data to F&R. POS DM IDocs ERP POS Inbound BAPI Transaction database Aggre- Consumption Standards Sales gate data Transactions VMI F&R XML Access Module BW BW Masterdata Figure 8: POS DM architectural overview 11
  12. 12. ERP ERP holds the master records of products and suppliers, prices, locations, and assortments. It also holds all transactional information required for retail core processes, such as product lifecycle management, assortment control, sourcing and ordering, inventory management and valuation, order fulfillment and logistics execution. Figure 9 illustrates the process flow for inbound POS data, then how purchase orders are created and transformed into logistical documents, which will be processed in external warehouses to ensure products arrive on time and stocks are updated. The defined test scope covered those tasks which must be processed during the critical path processing window: • Processing of IDocs • Creation of purchase orders from Forecasting and Replenishment order proposals • Creation of outbound deliveries. ERP POS DM Receive sales IDocs Inbound Process sales IDocs from POS DM POS -> inventory update -> FI posting Receive order F&R proposals from F&R Process Orders Create purchase orders Standard Stock transfer order: order: Create outbound Send info Send info about delivery to external outbound delivery External Vendor vendor Create outbound delivery Management System External Warehouse Post warehouse goods issue Get info about goods issue Post store goods receipt Delivery Send info about goods receipt to stores Stores Delivery to stores Figure 9: ERP architectural overview 12
  13. 13. F&R Supply chain planning solutions need to help retailers to strike the ideal balance between minimizing inventory ownership and maximizing customer service. SAP Forecasting and Replenishment uses sophisticated algorithms and automation technology to accurately forecast sales, including promotions and events which influence demand (Figure 10). Specifically designed for retailers, F&R is made to be scalable, reach a high degree of automation and reduce user intervention for critical business situations with its inherent alert system. Scalability and performance testing was performed for all relevant store replenishment tasks which must be processed during the overnight critical path processing window: • Process consumption data • Run forecasting and replenishment including exception handling, and create order proposals • Transfer of order proposals to ERP F&R Master Open Stock DIFs Sales POS DM Transfer of data Orders relevant data PIPE Forecast and Requirement Calculation POS DM ERP Requirement Exception Quantity Optimization Handling Automatic Order Proposal Release Transfer of Management Order Proposals into Orders Manual BW Replenishment Vendor Provision of forecast & other data for cooperative scenarios Figure 10: F&R architectural overview 13
  14. 14. The trilogy tested as an integrated solution The objective of the integration test was to demonstrate the ability of the complete application and infrastructure solution to handle the critical time window for very high volumes. This scenario proved the end to end solution, including the interfaces and flow between solution components. It confirmed the high-volume processing with the concurrent load requirements of each component, consistent with what is found in a customer production environment. Figure 11 shows the logical sequence of the integrated process steps and their integration points. The numbering indicates the sequence of the steps within the replenishment cycle of the integrated retail scenario (including the solution components of POS DM, ERP and F&R). POS DM collects and aggregates sales data, and transforms it into IDocs (1) that will be sent to the ERP system (2). There, the necessary stock and value updates will be performed to keep consistent inventory information (3). At the same time the sales data information will be fed into F&R as consumption time series (4) to form the basis for the forecast calculation and to adjust the stock information so the replenishment calculation can begin (5). The processing of sales data IDocs in ERP and the processing of consumption data in F&R run in parallel. Once the replenishment run is finished, the order proposals are fed back into ERP’s relevant buffer tables (6), where they will be converted into purchase orders to suppliers and Distribution Centers (7). Once this is completed, the logistics execution is kicked off with the creation of the outbound delivery documents (8). The critical path ends with the processing of the so-called ‘delivery due’ list. Steps 9-11, outside of the critical path, complete the full cycle necessary for follow-up inventory postings in the distribution centers and receiving stores. POS DM 225 mil sales transactions Write non-aggregated sales data to inbound queue Write non-aggregated sales data to TLOG 1 Aggregate sales data from TLOG 35 mil line items Create sales IDOCS from aggregated sales data 2 Send sales IDOCS to ERP Send consumption to F&R 4 F&R 35M Line Items Process consumption data 80 mil prod/loc 5 ERP FRP-Run 35 mil line items 3 Process IDOCS (update inventory, post FI) Send order proposals to ERP 6 17 mil line items 10 mil purchase order items 7 Create Purchase Order (NB & UB) External Vendor 7 mil line items 7 mil delivery items 8 Create outbound deliveries External WMS Post warehouse goods issues 17 mil line items Post store goods receipt = Sequence of execution with focus on critical path Figure 11: Integrated test scenarios 14
  15. 15. Results: Highlights of Proof-points Summary of results • IBM and SAP have jointly demonstrated the applicability of our solutions for high volume retail. In each area of the Retail Trilogy project we have significantly exceeded (by factors of 2-3x) previously published or supported volumes. • We demonstrated performance for the current versions of the SAP application – not only the performance of the individual application components, but through our integrated scenario, the viability of the complete store replenishment cycle for large scale retail. • Results were not just demonstrated on a single technology, but on a choice of platforms that retailers find relevant and commonly use. • Utilizing best practice configuration of the SAP application and the features of the IBM database, storage, and platform we have optimized the joint performance of our combined solution. • Most importantly, we demonstrated this with common, large-scale business conditions using only authorized and supported elements of our combined solution. Sales data into insights Consistent with the volumes of very large customers, 225 million sales line items were aggregated into ~35 million consumption line items for processing by other SAP Retail components, other SAP applications, and/or use by other applications, in only 31 minutes. That consumption data was transferred to F&R, where it was processed in 25 minutes. Thus, both aggregation and processing of the aggregated ~35 million store location products in F&R was completed in less than an hour. This represented nearly triple the result of the most previously released information by SAP for POS DM and its integration with ERP. Hardened transaction processing The processing within ERP, including the data flows between POS DM, F&R and ERP, represented nearly triple the volumes previously tested. Forecasting and replenishment to the extreme Our results demonstrated peak nightly processing of 80 Million item-store combinations (also referred to as product-locations) in less than 4 hours. This allows large retailers the flexibility to evaluate all store/Distribution Center/item combinations to be executed in a nightly process if desired, or to continue to segment the processing to support even higher volumes of item/location. This doubled the volumes previously validated by SAP for the forecasting and replenishment processor run (FRP). 15
  16. 16. Results from the independent component tests During the independent component tests, each SAP application workload was tested on a dedicated server with the full volumes of data, in order to establish the maximum throughput possible on a single server. These results are shown in Figure 12. While providing valuable information about portions of the solution, individual component testing excludes the actual inter-system dataflow, coordination, concurrent load, and other effects as these cannot be tested in unitary tests. Hence, testing of the complete business process was accomplished during integrated scenario testing. Process FRP Run Consumption Send consumption Data data 80M product/locations 225M Line Items 34.8M Line +Create Order Proposals F&R Items 17.8M Line Items 31min 25min 3h 56min Create Create Create Sales IDocs Purchase Order Process IDocs 34.8M Line Orders Deliveries Items 139402 IDocs 17.42M 6.97M ERP 3h 26min 3min 2h 03min 1h 6min POS DM Figure 12: Independent Component Tests Additional benefit to retailers As part of the individual component tests, we captured information for estimating the system size requirements for the SAP Retail environment. While carefully and incrementally scaling the volumes and applied optimization capabilities of the IBM infrastructure, we also monitored and documented the performance of the application environment. This enabled us to construct the most comprehensive information for the sizing of the SAP Retail application ever available. 16
  17. 17. Results from the Integrated Solution In the integrated scenario, we demonstrated the viability of the critical path for the complete Trilogy solution for large scale retail, taking into account the inter-system dataflow, co-ordination, concurrent load and other effects inherent in actual retail environments. We demonstrated the end-to-end process with the same data that we used to demonstrate the scale of the individual Trilogy components. Our results in Figure 13 showed that we could process the same high volumes we demonstrated individually, in a stable, scalable, integrated environment. Importantly, we demonstrated that this could be achieved in a window well within the nightly processing requirements for most retailers. In the integrated scenarios, concurrent processing of the critical path delivered the following results: • POS Sales data, aggregated into approximately 35 million consumption line items, processed concurrently by F&R, and by ERP (for inventory update and financial posting) in under 5 hours. • The final steps of the integrated scenario were the transfer of the optimized order information from F&R to Retail- centric ERP transactions such as purchase ordering and delivery creations. • The order proposals from F&R received by ERP were converted into 17+ million order line items and nearly 7 million delivery lines in just over 3 hours. This large scale processing enables retailers to have confidence in the scalability and stability of the combined SAP and IBM solution. Process Consumption FRP Run Consumption Data data 80M product/locations F&R Prepare and send 34.8M Line +Create Order Proposals 225M Line Items Items 17.8M Line Items 22 minutes 48 minutes 3 hours 46 minutes Transfer Order Summarizati Proposals on Transfer IDocs 17.8M Line Items Create Sales IDocs 139402 IDocs ERP 4 hours 22 minutes Create Purchase Create Outbound 22 minutes 34.8M Line Orders Deliveries Items Process IDocs 17.42M 6.97M 6 minutes 139402 IDocs 2h08 mn 1h04mn 34.8 MLine Items POS DM 3 hours 43 minutes Figure 13: Integrated scenario processing times 17
  18. 18. Optimized infrastructure enables unrivaled results The proof of technology aspects of the Trilogy project have demonstrated that the careful choice of the right infrastructure is critical for optimal results. In particular, the underlying database and the virtualization technology deployed have a huge impact. db2 – the optimized database for SAP DB2 database features played a crucial role in achieving the performance results. F&R in particular made direct use of the DB2 database features for partitioning and clustering, which played a crucial role in improving SAP parallelization of the workload and enhancing the performance of huge block insert and delete operations. The benefits were significantly increased throughput and shorter runtimes. In addition, benefits of features such as automatic storage management, memory self-tuning and software or hardware compression reduced hardware requirements, which result in an overall better/price performance ratio. This was demonstrated in DB2 LUW by improved runtimes in our testing with: • 56% less database space required, so fewer disks and reduced DB administration time for backup and restore • Up to 66% less Input/Output (I/O) requests, so faster data access • 57% less database memory utilization, so hardware cost savings Optimized total cost of ownership through virtualization and resource sharing The more the infrastructure footprint can be reduced, while still meeting the application requirements, the less investment is required and the lower the total cost of ownership (TCO). The PowerVM shared processor pools allowed multiple SAP systems to be housed on a single server. For the integrated retail scenario, all three systems share the processor resources according to the requirements of their processing load and according to a defined priority scheme. The graph below (Figure 14) depicts the peak requirements of all three systems during an integrated run. This shows the processor capacity which would be required for dedicated systems. As these peaks can occur at different times, PowerVM allowed us to meet the workload requirements with only 48% the total number of processors required on non-virtualized systems. This is a tremendous saving in hardware and software resources. Physical resource sharing allows the optimal use of infrastructure investment. Physical Resource Requirements at High Load per Solution Component 60 ERP; 63.7 50 Physical CPUs 40 POS F&R 30 F&R; 36.5 POS; 32.7 ERP 20 10 0 Peak Requirement per SAP System Figure 14: Peak requirements on dedicated servers 18
  19. 19. On the database server, System z, we demonstrate the resource sharing for the three concurrent databases. In this design, POS DM and ERP shared the same virtual machine, as their peak loads occur at different stages in the processing chain. Again, we demonstrate how the peak requirements of nearly 20 Central Processors (CPs) are met by sharing just over 12 physical CPs (Figure 15). Since the average load on these resources was very low, at any given point in time the remaining processor power was available for other active work. Work Load Manager (WLM) and Processor Resource / System Manager (PR-SM) ensured the system’s priority scheme matched the company’s Service Level Objectives (SLO). As a result we were able to over-allocate processing resources, confident that we would be able to meet critical response time and batch run time targets. The combined System z database and POWER6 595 application server architecture demonstrated how the integrated retail scenario could be implemented to satisfy the strenuous retail industry business SLOs. With this architecture we were able to apply the best technical characteristics of each system to specific business requirements of the retail solution. SAP Retail DBs LPARs - CPU utilization - Integrated run 14 12 10 8 # CP 6 4 2 0 Max Avg Max Avg POS DM & ERP F&R Figure 15: Peak requirements with resource sharing 19
  20. 20. Proving scalability and stability of the integrated solution Stability under test One proof of stability is to answer the question: “what happens as the volume increases?” Does the solution remain stable as the requirements increase? Here in Figure 16, we proved that the resulting processing times, for the complete integrated business process, remain stable over time and volume. We started with a medium retail volume and then doubled this volume; achieving this in somewhat less than double the run-time. The latter also proved the integrated process stability; executing an extended volume over nearly 13 hours. Stability: Volume vs Time - Double Volume = Double Runline 40 Million Store/Articles 80 Mill Store/Articles 14:24 Processing Window (Hrs) Integrated End to End 12:00 09:36 12:55 07:12 04:48 06:46 02:24 00:00 Volumes 1x to 2x Figure 16: Stability over time and volume Scalability under test As the volumes of data grow, the processing window allowed by the business is most likely to remain fixed. We need assurance that the solution is able to handle increasing volumes of data in the same processing time by scaling out over more resources. In answer to scalability, we proved that by using additional resources we can reduce the longest running processing steps. During the window of load, where both ERP and F&R are concurrently processing the two highest load requirements, we showed that by using double the application server resources we can cut both the runtimes in half (Figure 17). This demonstrates that the required volumes can be handled in the business’s required window by applying additional resources. Scalability - Resources vs Concurrent Load Runtimes 80Mil Product/Location Volume 09:36 Highload Runtimes in Hours 08:24 08:52 07:12 07:39 06:00 64CPUs 04:48 128CPUs 03:36 03:46 03:43 02:24 01:12 00:00 FRP 1 to 2 servers ERP 1 to 2 servers Figure 17: Double resources to halve the time 20
  21. 21. Choice of IBM Infrastructure for Retail The Trilogy testing spanned several IBM infrastructure platforms to address the requirements of multiple retail sizes. These included two POWER6 infrastructures, for small and medium business requirements, and two high-end infrastructures, for the large and very large, which combined the strengths of the IBM System z with POWER6. This huge investment in infrastructure and effort allows us to provide results which are relevant to retailers of many different sizes and with different requirements. Scaling up to the IbM mainframe (System z) Following the complete series of individual tests on POWER6 595, the test included the migration of POS DM, ERP and F&R databases from POWER6 595 to System z. This is the potential situation that some existing customers might find themselves in if they are not able to meet: • Security demands • Availability requirements • Batch window constraints • Scalability requirements. All existing POWER6 595 application servers were connected to the System z database server and all resources were retained to support the scaled-up configuration. Moving distributed databases from UNIX, Linux, or Windows is a safe process for customers, which is supported by SAP and IBM. In practice, using SAP standard tools built on DB2 for z/OS capabilities, it was possible to import, reorganize and compress each database in one step, then proceed rapidly with the next phase of testing. Verification of storage demand By adding a layer of storage virtualization, using the SAN Volume Controller (Figure 18), we demonstrated a flexible growth scenario and determined the optimal storage requirements for the different retailer sizes. The real life storage requirements are not so much determined by the amount of data on the disks, but by the behavioral requirements of the application. By scaling out the I/O footprint in relation to the growing demand of the increasing application load, we were able to verify the I/O requirement for throughput and performance. This proof point demonstrates a non-disruptive growth scenario for fiber storage environments and provides the basis for very precise storage sizing, which reduces risk and aids planning. Size1 Storage Virtualization Create 10 LUNS Layer: SAN Volume Controller Size 1 Size 2 Database Create 20 LUNS Server Virtual Size2 Disks Size3 Size 3 Create 40 LUNS Increasing IO Storage Virtualization with LUNs on Physical Storage Server added requirement Non-disruptive scale-out as required As DB scales up to meet increasing load Figure 18: Storage virtualization 21
  22. 22. Infrastructure that best meets requirements Incubation test configuration The “incubator” is an IBM hardware landscape installed within the SAP development computer center in Walldorf, Germany, for ease of access by SAP development. The architecture shown in Figure 19 was based on a midrange POWER6 system and a midrange storage server to provide a reference architecture for small- to medium-size retail customers. This is where the systems were first implemented and functionally tested. Each solution was similar to a customer implementation insofar as the data design and layout was intended to replicate real-life business processes. Data loading was to prepare for high- volume tests and historical data was generated for two years of sales data on a weekly level, 30 days on a daily level. Phase One Mass test configuration Following validation of the test scenarios on the incubation system in Walldorf, the complete test environment was transferred to the IBM Customer Solution Center in Montpellier, France. The Phase One Mass test architecture is shown in Figure 20. This high-end POWER6 landscape consisted of the newest model of the IBM UNIX servers, POWER6 595 64-core 5GHz with 512GB of memory in collaboration with a high-end storage server DS8300 with 128GB cache and 384 available disks, configured in RAID 5. In this configuration, where the application servers and DB servers are all housed on a single 595, POWER6 processor sharing is used to allow the system resources to follow the processing load across the integrated landscape. POWER6 supports multiple shared processor pools which were used to implement a firm priority system and controlled distribution of resources, so that the databases and SAP central instances had priority. virtual Ethernet Backbone POS DM SAN POS DM DB2 CI+DB V9.5 POS-DM F&R F&R CI+DB SAN DS5100 18TB virtual Ethernet Backbone DB2 DB2 DB2 ERP CI+DB DB2 ERP V9.5 V9.5 V9.5 V9.5 ERP POS DM ERP F&R POS DM AS DB2 V9.5 F&R F&R AS ERP AS DS8300 Turbo Dual Frame POWER6 570 80TB 16 CPU 3.5GHz POWER6 595 64 CPUs 5GHz Figure 19: Incubation Figure 20: Phase One Mass test configuration 22
  23. 23. Integrated test configuration For the high-end critical path tests, the architecture was extended to the heterogeneous configuration shown in Figure 21. The databases were migrated to DB2 for z/OS using workload management to enforce a further priority scheme, while the resource sharing implemented for the pure POWER6 landscape was carried forward into the final tests. Maximum test configuration This final test represented the very high-end volume for an extremely large retailer with a tight processing window for store replenishment activities, so for the high-load phase of the parallel processing an additional 595 application server was added as shown in Figure 22. Two POWER6 595 64 CPUs z10 E56 50 CPUs DS8300 Turbo 40TB DS8300 Turbo 40TB z10 E56 50 CPUs POWER6 595 64 CPUs POS DM CI POS DM DB DB2 POS DM CI POS DM DB DB2 SAN POS SAN POS POS DM AS POS DM AS ERP CI F&R AS ERP CI DB2 ERP F&R AS DB2 ERP F&R CI ERP CI ERP AS F&R AS DB2 DB2 F&R AS F&R F&R ERP CI F&R CI ERP AS Figure 21: Integrated test configuration Figure 22: Maximum test configuration 23
  24. 24. delivering unique capabilities with IbM technologies This project is another example of the shared goal of enabling efficient integration between SAP applications and the IBM Dynamic Infrastructure. POWER6 System IBM Power System servers are the leading choice for enterprise SAP customers on UNIX because of their built-in performance and virtualization features, as well as their reliability, availability and serviceability (RAS) characteristics. This platform is the leading RAS solution within the distributed server community. Processing demands continue to grow, so performance matters. IBM Power systems deliver leading benchmark results for SAP solutions with fewer processors than competitive systems. The ability to concentrate more SAP instances onto fewer servers while absorbing increased workloads without corresponding increases in server capacity, offers the potential to achieve new levels of cost effectiveness. Virtualization is the key technology trend in SAP system infrastructures and this project demonstrates just how IBM Power systems meet scalability demands while delivering exceptional performance. IBM PowerHA for AIX® (formerly High Availability Cluster Multiprocessing – HACMP™) provides a mature clustering solution, commonly used in SAP implementations to protect the SAP databases and application servers from outages; planned or unplanned. System z System z delivers extreme business value through industry-leading security, availability, scalability, virtualization, and management capabilities, components of which have been inherited by POWER6 595. System z can simplify and reduce costs through consolidation with a high degree of automation, and also offers leading high availability solutions to limit the business impact of SAP downtime, resulting in reduced profits and lost productivity. System z is able to consistently maintain high levels of system utilization (90-100%) while ensuring that high priority business processes meet service level objectives (SLO). This characteristic reduces power consumption, and footprint requirements, and allows an enterprise consolidation which reduces operational requirements thereby reducing total cost of ownership (TCO). By running the SAP databases on System z for the integrated retail scenario, we were able to demonstrate the vital role of System z for very large scalable SAP databases based on these features: • Hardware data compression • System offload with the z Integrated Information Processor (zIIP) for database processing • Extended accounting capabilities • Workload Management (WLM) enabled a higher priority for database processing of defined processes. This project is another example of IBM and SAP working together to achieve their shared goals of enabling efficient integration between SAP applications and IBM’s Dynamic Infrastructure, with each component playing a crucial role in delivering the target results. IbM storage IBM System Storage DS8000™ solutions are designed to deliver robust, flexible, highly available, reliable and cost-effective disk storage to support continuous operations for large enterprise and mission-critical workloads. They offer improved data protection through striped disks with dual parity (RAID 6) which can recover from the loss of two disks. IBM products help organize and manage a storage environment that can better accommodate explosive data growth while simplifying administration and addressing rising costs. IBM offers traditional hard disk storage as well as solid state disk storage for hot spot data structures. 24
  25. 25. SAN Volume Controller (SVC) SVC is used to virtualize the storage, which increases utilization, handles peak loads and avoids performance bottlenecks very efficiently. It also reduces total cost of ownership (TCO) with reduced power and cooling expenses while streamlining administration. In this project, we used SVC for the most throughput-demanding portion of the trilogy, F&R, as shown in Figure 23. SVC made it possible to easily and quickly move data online between different sized groups of disks. We determined the number of disks sufficient to handle a given load and also created a precise storage sizing profile. Besides deploying SVC to better manage growing data volumes associated with normal operations, customers enjoy increased flexibility in migrating the production environment to newer storage technology without disruption or down time. db2 IBM database systems on each platform are always specially optimized for SAP software by joint IBM and SAP development teams as part of the normal delivery process. Benefits of this collaboration include: • Simplified and tailored setup • Performance gains at lower cost • Data compression (software or hardware) • Index compression • DB partitioning • Online backup • One stop service and support via SAP processes • Optimized setting for SAP • Integrated DB Administration. Parallel database with DB2 data sharing on System z is a unique SAP certified scale-out solution that allows zero downtime Figure 23: F&R mass test with SVC maintenance and upgrades of the DB management system itself. POWER6 595 64 CPUs 5GHz Few Disks SAN Volume Controller Small Managed Disk Customer Group 1 (80 Disks) Many Disks Virtual Ethernet Backbone F&R CI + DB Virtual Medium Managed Disk Disk load Group 2 (160 Disks) Max Load Managed Disk Group 3 (320 Disks) Lots of Disks F&R AS DS8300 Turbo Dual Frame Figure 23: F&R mass test with SVC 25
  26. 26. SAP for Retail: A Comprehensive, Integrated Solution The SAP for Retail solution portfolio enables you to get ahead, and stay ahead of your competition. By gaining deeper understanding of your shoppers and your operations, and leveraging superior operational control, you will maximize the effectiveness of your merchandising strategies. • Insight into all areas of your business: Enable an extensive understanding of all aspects of your operations – from shopper demand through all financial, merchandising, supply chain and store performance – that can be accessed and leveraged across your enterprise. • Anticipate your shoppers’ needs: Achieve profitable growth through timely execution of strategic merchandise decisions, including merchandise and assortment planning, lifecycle pricing (through inventory clearance) and promotion management. • Streamline supply chain operations: Ensure the right inventory is in the right location, and react faster to changes in the market through agility, transparency, and global capabilities throughout the supply chain. • Ensure an inspired shopping experience: Build a compelling and consistent shopping experience across all channels you serve to entice your shoppers to return again and again. Use best business practices to achieve unparalleled operational efficiency while maintaining security and minimizing risk. • A solid foundation for corporate operations: Streamline financial and human resource activities to maintain compliance, deliver shareholder value, exceed employee expectations and become a best-run business. SAP for Retail contains solutions that address the needs of all stakeholders and line-of-business owners across the entire retailing spectrum. The following is a representative, partial, list of solutions: • SAP Merchandising for Retail • SAP Merchandise and Assortment Planning for Retail • SAP Loyalty Program • SAP POS for Retail and SAP Enterprise POS for Retail • SAP POS Loss Prevention for Retail • SAP Price Optimization for Retail • SAP Promotion Management for Retail • SAP Markdown Optimization for Retail • SAP Multichannel Order Management for Retail • SAP Web Channel Enablement for Retail • SAP Extended Manufacturing for Retail • SAP Extended Warehouse Management for Retail • SAP Extended Procurement for Retail • SAP Centralized Electronic Funds Transfer • SAP Transportation Operations for Retail • SAP Workforce Management • SAP Learning Solution • SAP Real Estate Management 26
  27. 27. Conclusions The IBM infrastructure fusion with the SAP Retail application provides a solution for retailers of all sizes. Through a rigorous deep dive using the Trilogy components in a near real-life implementation, IBM and SAP demonstrated support for the most demanding of retail environments. Strategic clarity With its comprehensive set of integrated business solutions, the SAP for Retail portfolio gives you the means and tools to drive your strategy through to execution. It will help you understand your shoppers’ preferences and react to demand while providing real-time visibility across your organization to proactively manage your business. This project demonstrated that the SAP for Retail portfolio operating on a choice of IBM infrastructure supports the critical retail processes involving extreme data volumes that need to be processed during demanding overnight time constraints. Increased assurance The joint Retail Trilogy project demonstrates that retail-specific business processes are well understood. The performance tests and system landscape deployed accurately reflect retailer needs, while the high volumes and configuration options represent real requirements. As a result, sizing recommendations are validated for medium and large customers while allowing for growth; and customers can have confidence in well-justified total cost of ownership (TCO) scenarios for various IBM and SAP solution options. Maximum performance at optimum cost This project demonstrated that the time-critical overnight processing can be completed within defined time windows for both normal and extreme volumes on a cost-effective configuration. IBM technologies including virtualization, DB2 database and enterprise storage systems were essential to meeting these demands. The test results enable more precision in planning retailer configurations and take into account the optimal resource utilization achieved on IBM platforms. In addition, IBM platforms are designed to deliver the highest levels of reliability and serviceability, while offering solutions for the most demanding availability requirements. Operational excellence With their combined industry expertise IBM and SAP can ensure the business efficiency of your retail solution. SAP for Retail solutions provide the essential business functions across the entire value chain from manufacturers through suppliers and retailers to consumers, with optimized processes and controls. IBM has been part of every significant technology innovation in retail, including point-of-sale systems, bar code and radio-frequency technology, as well as e-commerce. Reassurance from SAP and IbM The results convincingly demonstrate the viability and value that SAP and IBM technology brings to the retail industry. IBM and SAP are ready to support your organization in assuring your implementation. 27
  28. 28. Contacts For further information about the Retail Trilogy project and a copy of the White Paper please email the IBM SAP International Competency Center via For SAP related enquiries or requests please use Useful links To learn more about the solutions from IBM and SAP, visit IBM Deutschland GmbH D-70548 Stuttgart For more information about SAP products and services for retail, IBM, the IBM logo and are trademarks of contact an SAP representative or visit International Business Machines Corporation, registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. A current list of other IBM trademarks is available on the Web at For more information about IBM products and services for retail, “Copyright and trademark information” at contact an IBM representative or visit Intel, the Intel logo, Intel Xeon and the Intel Xeon logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries in the United States and other countries. UNIX is a registered trademark of The Open Group in the United States and other countries. IbM and SAP International Competence Center Linux is a trademark of Linus Torvalds in the United States, other countries, or both. Microsoft, Windows, . . . combining our strengths Windows NT, and the Windows logo are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both. Two global players – one partnership Other company, product or service names may be The IBM SAP International Competence Center (ISICC) was trademarks, or service marks of others. jointly established by IBM and SAP in 1993 in Walldorf. In the This case study illustrates how one IBM customer uses ISICC, experts from both companies work together closely in IBM and/or IBM Business Partner technologies/ services. Many factors have contributed to the results order to produce synergies from the knowledge and skills of both and benefits described. IBM does not guarantee alliance partners, and to make available a uniform approach. comparable results. All information contained herein was provided by the featured customer and/or IBM Thus, when implementing SAP solutions in combination with IBM Business Partner. IBM does not attest to its accuracy. products, clients receive support that extends far beyond what All customer examples cited represent how some customers have used IBM products and the results the partners could offer individually. they may have achieved. Actual environmental costs and performance characteristics will vary depending on individual customer configurations and conditions. The Retail Trilogy project was conceived by the IBM and SAP This publication is for general guidance only. retail industry groups, based on ongoing input from customers. Photographs may show design models. The project was designed and led by the ISICC and SAP in © Copyright IBM Corp. 2009. All rights reserved. collaboration with the IBM Products & Solutions Support Center, and executed in the high-end benchmark center at IBM Montpellier, France. © Copyright 2009 SAP AG SAP AG Dietmar-Hopp-Allee 16 D-69190 Walldorf SAP, the SAP logo, SAP and all other SAP products and services mentioned herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP AG in Germany and several other countries. SPL03006-DEEN-01 (October 2009)