• David Kantz

Persona-Based Learning From Analysis Prime University

Updated: Apr 7, 2021

Determine Your Persona and Maximize Your SAP Analytics Cloud Learning

Understanding Personas

They say knowledge is power, and this certainly holds true when creating meaningful content for your audience. But if you don’t understand your target audience, your effort in reaching them will prove to be fruitless. That is where “user” (in our case learner) personas come in. What are personas? Simply put, personas are mere templates used to outline a realistic representation of a target personality, person, or conduct, and are widely used to paint a mental picture of a theme or lesson. 

Dating back to historic times, personas were often used in narratives to help the audience understand the archetype of the character. Some classic examples include "Hero," "Villain," "Teacher," or "Guide." Even the youngest listener could immediately empathize with a character once the narrator painted them with a known persona. In modern day psychology for example, personas are frequently used to gauge a patient's mental awareness. It’s common for patients to label themselves as a victim or project onto others as an “Instigator”. But the persona identification process is not black and white, in fact, many individuals identify with multiple personas. The same could apply to learning. Keeping that in mind, content should be designed to help each persona maximize their learning. 

Let’s look at how Analysis Prime University (APU) defines various learner personas to create and deliver a learner-centered approach to SAP Analytics Cloud training. 

What are the APU Personas - And Where Do You Fit In?

If you’re like most modern-day organizations, you probably have various types of users, each If you’re like most modern-day organizations, you probably have various types of users, each with separate business requirements. SAP Analytics Cloud (SAC) was built to meet all your business needs. Shouldn’t your team’s learning on SAC also meet and extend your business needs? 

At APU, we’ve defined and curated training content for the following three learner personas. 

The End User

These are the individuals who use or intend to use the application, software, or product. They can either have the most intimate knowledge of the application, depending on usage, or simply be consumers of reports and dashboards that others have built for them. End Users value user experience, prioritizing ease of use and reducing complexities. They are often Data Analysts, Finance Manages, Directors, and even the CFO. Users interested in learning how to build business intelligence (BI) visualizations, diving deeper into planning and table creation within SAC, can participate in APU’s 100-level End-User module.  

The Developer

Developers, on the other hand, are responsible for building the applications, dashboards, and models utilized by End Users. This group tends to be more technical with vast knowledge of the innermost workings of the core system(s). Conversely, Developers could also be Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) who understand the relationships within the data. 

"Job titles typically associated with Developers are Business Intelligence Manager, SQL Developer, and Data Scientist."

Developers can get started with foundational hands-on training in SAP Analytics Cloud with our 100-level module, advance their knowledge with the 200-level module and master SAC with advanced 300-level module. Learn more about these modules in our learning outcomes.

The Administrator

Administrators, a.k.a. Admins, set up and configure the application for use by the rest of the organization. These are usually security or IT related personnel, such as an IT Manager, Security Director, Data Architect, or Solutions Manager, who have the credentials to make the connections to the various data sources. As an Admin learner, you can expect the following learning outcomes from our 100-300 level modules.

Next, we will look at how knowing and differentiating between the personas can work in your favor. 

How Understanding APU Personas Helps Me

Analysis Prime University offers the most comprehensive curriculum on the market with dozens of interactive, hands-on lessons in SAC. But how do you determine which lessons are the right fit for your and your teams’ requirements? The short answer is all of our lessons are categorized by persona which are then grouped into modules

These same persona-based modules were used as a guide during the development of our cutting-edge curriculum. So you can be assured, that the needs, goals and challenges of your perspective, were the root consideration for all the building blocks that went into developing and maintaining our curriculum. 

Throughout every lesson, the outcomes constantly relate back to the persona. For example, if you are asking "Why should I take this course?" The Lesson outcome clearly states, "As an End User you will lean on [these fundamentals] more than any other in your pursuit of understand [the application]." Even each topic the lesson covers relates back to the persona of the learner attending the lesson. 

Now that you see why understanding personas is so significant to starting your SAP Analytics Cloud training journey, let’s look at what persona is a best fit for you. 

Determine Your Persona

Determining your and/or your team's persona(s) is the first step in your journey to mastering SAP Analytics Cloud with Analysis Prime University. Start by asking the following Yes or No questions to better align with the appropriate persona(s).

1. What work will I be completing in the application?

a. Am I creating and configuring data source connections?

b. Am I building models and dashboards for myself and others to utilize?

c. Am I viewing dashboards others have created for me?

d. Am I performing data entry, analysis, or reporting?

2. What is my technical aptitude?

a. Am I filtering a dashboard to find an answer to a business question?

b. Am I creating views or tables that will be utilized in another application?

c. Am I considering security architecture to avoid data accessibility issues for my organization?

Answering "Yes" to specific questions above, would result in the following personas:


1C, 1D, 2A


1B, 2B


1A, 2C

Now, I wish that I could tell you the world is black and white such that these are the only points you need to consider, but alas we live in a world of grey! A Developer on one project or use case may also be an End User for another. For example, I am the Human Resources Manager who is building a story for my team. Based on the question and answers above, that would make me a Developer persona. However, I may have to view data provided by Finance to understand Budget implications for my department. Viewing these dashboards would make me an End User as well.

In summary, to accurately align yourself with an appropriate persona, you must first determine the goals you strive to achieve though your primary functions within SAP Analytics Cloud. APU has done most of the legwork categorizing the modules and appropriate lessons for you. To get started with your learning journey, visit our course catalog and dive right into engaging content delivered by SAP experts today. Need help identifying your learning path? Contact us today for more information. 


About the Author: David Kantz

David Kantz is the Manager of Experts-as-a-Service and Lead Trainer for Analysis Prime University. David has a specialization with Analytics and Planning for SAP Analytics Cloud. His background includes expertise in Planning, Analytics, and Business Intelligence Visualization. He is an active contributor to APU’s thought leadership and curriculum development. In his spare time, David enjoys spending time with his family or jogging around his neighborhood.