IT Central Station is now PeerSpot: Here's why

Top 8 BI (Business Intelligence)

Microsoft BITableauSAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence PlatformSAP Analytics CloudIBM CognosOracle OBIEEMicroStrategyTIBCO Spotfire
  1. leader badge
    The most interesting feature of Microsoft Power BI is that it's very user-friendly.The most valuable features in Microsoft BI are the analysis using the feature drag and drop function. It's very easy to load and use different data sources.
  2. leader badge
    I consider Tableau to be the best analytical tool available. It's really handy to use and can be used by non-technical people.The feature that is currently most valuable is the import feature where I can link to an Excel data source. I'm not using it with any other data source, such as SQL Server. I directly link it to an Excel sheet, and if I change anything in that Excel sheet, the changed data immediately gets reflected in the virtualization. This is something that is very convenient for me as of now.
  3. Buyer's Guide
    BI (Business Intelligence) Tools
    August 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about Microsoft, Tableau, SAP and others in BI (Business Intelligence) Tools. Updated: August 2022.
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  4. The ability to merge dimensions in a report is great.The web intelligence reporting tool and universe designer are the most valuable aspects of the solution.
  5. Easy to use.It is scalable.
  6. IBM Cognos is an excellent solution for tax, planning, budgeting, profit and loss statements and balance sheets.The three IBM Cognos features I find the most valuable are Dynamic Cubes, PowerPlay, and Watson.
  7. I like the cloud deployment feature. There are about 20 new features, and they are available on mobile and more. I haven't used any of them, but these features are highly attractive.
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  9. The most valuable features of MicroStrategy are user-friendliness and integration with the different data warehouse systems.MicroStrategy has powerful data security features, which are crucial these days. For example, when users view data in MicroStrategy, they're only allowed to see a portion based on the permissions. When we evaluated other solutions like Power BI or Tableau, we found the security is very poor. They can't help us secure access to the data.
  10. The most valuable features of TIBCO Spotfire are visualization. It's very nice, clear, and, flexible. You can analyze many data types and the user interface is very good.

Advice From The Community

Read answers to top BI (Business Intelligence) Tools questions. 620,600 professionals have gotten help from our community of experts.
it_user91872 - PeerSpot reviewer
Senior HR Analyst at a financial services firm with 501-1,000 employees
Our HR workforce analytics and process management team have been using Tableau desktop for over a year and found a great deal of benefits from its various features.  Our teams deal with a lot of MS Excel and Access files but also have to push data out of key HRIS systems like Workday into Tablea...
Read More »
Stephan Schaumburg-Lippe - PeerSpot reviewer
Stephan Schaumburg-LippeIn my opinion, Tableau is "best of bread" answering "one type of question"… more »
18 Answers
Charles C - PeerSpot reviewer
Charles C
Investment Director at a non-profit with 1-10 employees

Hello, I'm checking Business Intelligence solutions for an industrial company and I'm looking for your inputs on whether Board is better than Anaplan.

Thanks.

Gene Hammons - PeerSpot reviewer
Gene HammonsWe've had several FP&A departments include Anaplan in their analytics… more »
6 Answers
Miriam Tover - PeerSpot reviewer
Miriam Tover
Senior Delivery Ops Manager
PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
May 27 2022

As Big Data is playing a large role in decision-making and planning, even on the Executive level, are there certain solutions that are especially easy for non-technical users?

Syed Fahad Anwar - PeerSpot reviewer
Syed Fahad AnwarHi, in my opinion, Both Tableau Desktop and Power BI are easy to use, you can… more »
8 Answers
Evgeny Belenky - PeerSpot reviewer
Evgeny Belenky
PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)

Hi community,

What augmented analytics software or platform would you recommend to an organization with 1000+ employees? 

Alan Sutton - PeerSpot reviewer
Alan SuttonAnyone who recommends software based solely upon the size of an organisation is… more »
6 Answers
M_V - PeerSpot reviewer
M_V
CSRA at General Dynamics
Hi, I am using SAP BO Enterprise and running on Oracle. I'm looking for a much less expensive solution. It's not enough to use MS SQL instead of Oracle.  I'm still profiling the SAP BOE implementation but would like to head towards a DWH implementation that users can report off. Various users ...
Read More »
Gene Hammons, MBA - PeerSpot reviewer
Gene Hammons, MBASo, operating with a segment of our client base, mostly commercial stage… more »
9 Answers
Evgeny Belenky - PeerSpot reviewer
Evgeny Belenky
PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
Hi community, Here are the rankings reflected in this MQ: 3 Leaders: Microsoft Tableau Qlik 7 Visionaries: ThoughtSpot Tibco Software Oracle Sisense SAS SAP Yellowfin 3 Challengers: Google (Locker) Domo MicroStrategy 7 Niche Players: Amazon Web Services IBM Al...
Read More »
Claudine Beron - PeerSpot reviewer
Claudine BeronGartner is pay to play. In other words, if you don't pay Gartner a fee, they… more »
8 Answers
Zhan Geng - PeerSpot reviewer
Zhan Geng
Chief Technology Officer at ECMS

Hello, I'm looking for a Business Intelligence solution that's not so heavy - mostly reporting with drill up/down/across functions, dashboard, chat... 

Can anyone suggest a good option?

Djalma Gomes, Pmp, Mba - PeerSpot reviewer
Djalma Gomes, Pmp, MbaMy suggestion is for those who don´t require much coding such as Tableau, Power… more »
8 Answers

BI (Business Intelligence) Tools Articles

Evgeny Belenky - PeerSpot reviewer
Evgeny Belenky
PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
May 02 2022
Hi peers, We're happy to share our new bi-weekly Community Spotlight with you. Here you'll find recent contributions by PeerSpot community members: questions, articles and trending discussions. Trending See what your peers are discussing at the moment! What to choose: an endpoint antiviru...
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Evgeny Belenky - PeerSpot reviewer
Evgeny Belenky
PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
Apr 04 2022
Hi peers, This is our new Community Spotlight that includes recent contributions (questions, articles and discussions) by the PeerSpot community members. Trending Is RPA beneficial for a healthcare organization? With the increasing risk of cyber attacks in the west, due to the war in Ukra...
Read More »
Evgeny Belenky - PeerSpot reviewer
Evgeny Belenky
PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
Mar 18 2022
Hi community members, Here we go with a new Community Spotlight. We publish it to help YOU catch up on recent contributions by community members. Trending What open-source HCI solution do you recommend? How much time does SSO save? What are the main technical differences between Microso...
Read More »
Evgeny Belenky - PeerSpot reviewer
Evgeny Belenky
PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
Mar 04 2022
Hi community members, Here is our new Community Spotlight for YOU. We publish it to help you catch up on recent contributions by community members. Do you find it useful? Please comment below! Trending Top HCI in 2022 What are the main differences between XDR and SIEM? Articles Top ...
Read More »
Shibu Babuchandran - PeerSpot reviewer
Shibu Babuchandran
Regional Manager/ Service Delivery Manager at ASPL INFO Services
What Is Intelligent Process Automation? Intelligent process automation (IPA) refers to tasks that are automated or optimized in part by artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms. IPA tools can reduce human intervention in a variety of business processes. IPA solutions go beyon...
Read More »
Data Sleek - PeerSpot reviewer
Data Sleek
Owner at a consultancy with 1-10 employees
Over the past week, I had an opportunity to study Metabase quite extensively. I am pretty confident about my opinions. As a use case, I tried to recreate daily reports, that have already been published through Tableau . Here are some advantages of Metabase:1) It is fairly simple to use, and lear...
Read More »
Ariful Mondal - PeerSpot reviewer
Ariful MondalThis is very helpful. Thank you for sharing you views on Metabase. 
Ariful Mondal - PeerSpot reviewer
Ariful Mondal@Data Sleek you are most welcome. Microsoft Power BI, Tableau, Qliksense are… more »
2 Comments

BI (Business Intelligence) Tools Topics

What are business intelligence tools?

Business Intelligence tools are tools that gather all the business intelligence data together into easy-to-understand reports and summaries. They can be found in dashboards, charts, visualizations, maps, and more. These insightful, valuable tools can be found in a significant offering of software solutions available on the market today. The software tools will break down all of the historical performance data of your business and create logical, user-friendly reports, analyses, and summaries to better facilitate decision-making to course-correct problem performance or to better invest in successful profitable business trends. These software solutions can deliver all of this information instantly through easy, user-directed selections available through dashboard choices or visualization. The ability to gather all of this critical user data instantly and create informational reports to enable the best possible business decisions creates improved business processes throughout your entire organization.

When choosing a business intelligence tool you will want to consider the nature of your business, the industry, and how you want that information delivered back to you - either via dashboard, visualizations, reports summaries, etc. You will also want to consider your current organization’s ecosystem and ensure the business intelligence tool you select will successfully integrate with all your operating systems, and also decide whether an on-premises, hybrid, or cloud solution is best for you.

Finally, the last tool to consider is employing a business intelligence analyst team. This team would be directly accountable for getting all of the information accessed by the business intelligence tools to the appropriate departments, highlighting the areas for improvement and celebrating the areas of success so that the organization can maintain the highest levels of profitability. This business intelligence team will also maintain that the data being gathered for the reports are accurate and correct and ensure that the tool is performing appropriately.

IT Central Station (soon to be Peerspot) reviewers want to know how little training is required for a BI tool to get non-IT end users going. They want BI to be easy to implement. Users want tools to enable easy report building and administration as well.

The desire for BI tools to be easy to use flows from a trend in the technology over the least few years. BI has gone from being complex discipline reserved for highly-skilled people to being something the general knowledge worker can use every day. It’s not an either/or scenario. An organization might have some BI workloads that are reserved for data scientists, with others available to everyone. Regardless of where BI is deployed, however, continued support of end users and technical training for the support team are critical for success.

In addition to security, performance, scalability and stability, users emphasize the importance of BI’s ability to integrate with other systems. BI is not a standalone technology. It works in concert with database management and business applications. For example, BI must integrate with OLTP databases with minimal footprint. BI also needs to integrate easily with graphical tools and reporting software. A business intelligence toolset ought to integrate with visualization tools - with ability to produce visually appealing, value added dashboards, charts, and standard reports. Mobility also counts, with workers wanting to be able to do analytics on mobile form factors such as tablets.

Given that the “B” in BI stands for business, the business use case is considered highly relevant in choosing the right business intelligence toolset. BI should meet business needs. The total cost of ownership (TCO) should be well thought-out. And, any initiative to undertake BI should have clear executive management approval and a business plan for success. A thorough business needs analysis is essential.

According to IT Central Station members, the best BI tools support multiple file output options and publication options. For instance, can the tool produce interactive files (e.g. Xcelsius output) that are shared externally via .pdf, Excel, etc.? A business analytics solution should easily access multiple types of data sources, with data blending capabilities.

What are the types of business intelligence tools?

There are numerous types of business intelligence tools. Listed below are just a few to help you gain a better understanding of business intelligence.

  • Data gathering - The ability to gather data from various locations within your ecosystem and correlate that data into logical reporting and data analysis.
  • Find inefficiencies - The data gathered will highlight areas that are not meeting productivity and profitability goals and show the areas where the business process is weakest.
  • Compliance awareness - The tool can be used to track compliance and report any compliance anomalies to ensure all standards are being met in accordance with local, state, and federal guidelines.
  • Customizable - Reporting can be created to satisfy customer and changing business needs as desired. Business trends and various areas of focus can be broadened or intensified based on changes in season or market.
  • Security - Business intelligence can also perceive areas of potential risk, threat, or fraud within your organization.
Benefits of Business Intelligence Tools

The benefits of using business intelligence tools include:

  • Speed of service - Gathering critical data and correlating the data quickly into viable, easy-to-understand, actionable information.
  • Improved data standards - Consistent reporting will create trends of better reporting compliance and improved standards of data-gathering to ensure productive, efficient results.
  • Increased satisfaction - Better reporting means better results and increased satisfaction with clients and consumers. Accurate reporting allows for real-time adjustments to best capture the highest-performance capabilities and ensure the greatest return on investment (ROI).
  • Increased profitability - The appropriate use of business intelligence will give you the ability to transform every business process within your organization to ensure the highest level of productivity and profitability. The ability to discover loss or ineffective processes quickly and course-correct immediately will help ensure your organization can continually meet or exceed your profitability goals.
Features of Business Intelligence Tools

Features to look for when choosing BI tools include:

  • Personalized dashboards - This has been ranked as the number one most desirable feature. The ability to have you or your clients design a dashboard with the data most relevant to the business’s needs is critical in choosing a business intelligence software solution. This information should be correlated in easy-to-understand reporting, mapping, or summary. Users can choose the most relevant information to track and receive real-time reporting on a chosen designated basis to make decisions quickly and clearly and to keep the business functioning at the highest levels of productivity and profitability.
  • Ranking reports - Ranking reports can be specific to any and all areas of the organization: productivity, sales, employee performance, department, compliance, etc. The ability to view the top 10 best (or worst) performers in a specific area of your business can provide a quick snapshot of the areas of the business to follow more closely.
  • What-if scenarios - After gathering your data, you may want to consider all the possibilities of how a new decision or change might affect your organization. Using historical data, your business intelligence tool can run what-if scenarios to logically predict the impact of what those changes can represent on the trajectory of your organization and to ensure the organization stays on target to achieve your business goals and achieve maximum ROI.
  • Tailored security - The BI tool should give users the ability to set security parameters based on specific business needs. You should have the ability to limit who has access to which applications and how information is displayed to users based on department, group, or individual status.
Buyer's Guide
BI (Business Intelligence) Tools
August 2022
Find out what your peers are saying about Microsoft, Tableau, SAP and others in BI (Business Intelligence) Tools. Updated: August 2022.
620,600 professionals have used our research since 2012.