Reporting Tools Features

Read what people say are the most valuable features of the solutions they use.
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Yali Pollak
Data Analysis Team Leader at Viber
Uses Tableau
* Drag and drop: It's easy for beginners to use Tableau as it's very intuitive and simple to create insights. * Quick table calculations: There are some best-practice shortcuts for tables, which means Tableau can be implemented very quickly. * Data Connectors: Tableau has many different connectors for different databases. It's very easy to connect to MySQL, SQL Server, Amazon EMR, Presto, Redshift, BigQuery, and so on. Just name it and they have the connector; the work they do is very impressive. View full review »
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Scott Kaylie
Chief Data Officer at Mobivity
Uses Domo
Distribution of visualizations via a web portal is valuable, but really is basic table stakes. If you are looking for a true analytical tool, skip Domo. View full review »
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Gareth Crawshaw
Consultant at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses Tableau
Extraordinary ease of use, easier to use than any competitor product I’ve used in 15 years or so I’ve worked on MI/BI. Since I originally wrote this, I have found the mapping on Tableau has been extremely useful and easy to use, particularly that it includes very good geocoding for the UK. In terms of the UK, the support and community here is also exceptional and I know that I don't have to trawl through sites endlessly to find solutions, the community is one of the strongest I've seen thus far in BI View full review »
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Allan Evans
Director at a tech vendor with 51-200 employees
Uses Yellowfin
The breadth of features, compared to the simplicity of implementation and use. The product doesn’t try to do everything, for everybody – but it has a broad range of capability. As an implementer, the ease of installation, plus how quickly you can bring a customer up to speed is important. View full review »
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Josh Kragness
Director of Statistics and Analysis at a tech company with 501-1,000 employees
Uses Oracle OBIEE
Some of the most outstanding features of OBIEE is both its scalability and dependability. OBIEE is worthy of its ‘Enterprise’ moniker as it can handle any amount of end-to-end data thrown at it. But these strengths can only be realized if the business and engineering teams work diligently to define not only the various levels of data aggregation, but also clearly define the meta-data in order to establish efficient drill-down hierarchies and relationships. With proper table design plus good data governance, OBIEE can serve as the central delivery mechanism that brings insight into the business layer of almost any size of company. View full review »
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Jonathan Friesen
User at a energy/utilities company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses Tableau
Easily visualize data. View full review »
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Saravanan Ramaraj
Solution Architect at MIMOS Berhad
Uses SpagoBI
QbE(QueryByExample) using Hibernate Support for both Liferay and ExoPortal Data Mining using Weka View full review »
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Qlik Technical Consultant at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
Uses QlikView
E-T-L, The Extract, Transform, and Loading capabilities of QlikView make it a highly sophisticated self-service business intelligence tool for developers and analysts who desire much more advanced handling of dirty or unconsolidated data. QlikView scripting language has numerous transformation functions. View full review »
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Larry Keller
CEO at a tech consulting company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses Tableau
I have been using Tableau since 2006; 3.5 years as an employee of Tableau Software and 7 years as a trainer/consultant. The more robust features include improved geo-encoding. Shape content is a big winner, as is cluster analysis. Cross-DB joins are helpful, as well. A huge improvement is the ability to render DV to any device from phone to PC. View full review »
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Sr. Business Intelligence Consultant at Avantas, LLC
Uses Birst
1) Connection to external sources : Birst uses several connection methods to take data in from your data sources and stages it into its own “Data Mart” if you will. 2) Staging and Warehousing: This stages data from several sources makes Birst a fairly robust data warehouse solution. A lot of vendors can do that well and so does Birst. 3) Modeling: Birst utilizes a start schema for dimensional modeling of the data that is staged. 4) Visualization: In most vendors Data warehousing and then data modeling were two separate functionalities. The idea was to be able to sell visualization tools as a separate suite to users who already had an in-house warehouse. However, recently, several vendors have started combining the warehousing and visualization abilities into one stop shop. For example, for a long time, Tableau was and probably is the leading provider of visualizer tools but warehousing data through tableau is much more cumbersome and resource intensive. Birst, Qlikview etc. have not been able to provide the exact beautification and features in the visualizer for self-service dashboards as Tableau but they have managed to seamlessly allow data visualization and dashboard development from the warehouse on the go. This goes into the technical inter-operability of the warehouse with visualization, data understandability, query performance and render time. View full review »
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Akarsh Agnivesh (Tableau/Spotfire/R Enthusiast)
Manager, Business Intelligence at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses Tableau
The most valuable feature in Tableau Desktop developer version is the drag and drop feature of dimensions & measures in the view. Parameters and action filters are also great. View full review »
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Mike Bernaiche
Business Analytics Coach at a software R&D company with 51-200 employees
Uses IBM Cognos
IBM Cognos Analytics is a data discovery and reporting platform for your department or your entire enterprise. But it's much more than just managed reporting: It provides departmental users with the self-sufficiency they need to bring in their own external data, explore it, and even merge it with corporately governed data, all without needing to go to IT. With that ability, they can get fresh perspectives that are simply not available in their existing reporting environment. View full review »
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Jonathan Mc Knight
Business Intelligence Manager at Mspark
Uses IBM Cognos
We are able to combine data from multiple sources across the organization and report on the information as a single source. This allows us to provide insights we could not easily determine before our BI implementation. It is fairly easy to use provided you have a good data structure/framework under the hood. View full review »
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Oscar Barrientos ǀ ITIL V3, SAP BO
Business Intelligence Specialist at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses Tableau
I really like the design of the charts. The rapidness of the development is impressive. Its full set of options helps you reach the specific chart that you need and you can add any kind of additional data source. It gives the business user the power to analyze something new with his own datasources. View full review »
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Kathy Williams Chiang
VP, Business Insights at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Uses Tableau
The best features of Tableau include: * Freedom of connection: Its ability to connect to practically any database. There is no need to go through cryptic ODBC or other driver setup procedures. * Freedom of exploration: The ease one can explore a data table. With simple drag and drop, you can produce easily readable cross tabs and paretos on-the-fly to learn everything you need to know about an unfamiliar table. * Freedom of expression: You can pretty much build any type of analytic structure you need to analyze your data. * Built-in visual best practices: Interfaces are clean and simple. You have to work hard to produce an ugly chart in Tableau. View full review »
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Joop Moerkens
BI Engineer at a media company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses IBM Cognos
The jobstreams and the ways SQL-scripts can be effectively organized behind icons. View full review »
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Carlos Mardinotto Junior
BI Expert at Business Intelligence / DW Consultant / Scrum
Uses IBM Cognos
- We have worked with several reporting software products, and Cognos has a lot of flexibility and is very usable. It will perform most tasks that you would need. View full review »
Anonymous avatar x60
DHS HQ at a government with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses Tableau
It’s good for quick visualization and being able to quickly consume unstructured data to play around with. This is good way to show a demonstration/prototypes of dashboards and scenarios for design discussions on reporting requirements or to show what the data is telling us when it comes to features of data integration, OLAP services, data mining and extract, transform, and load (ETL) capabilities. View full review »
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Praveen Yalagandula
Sr Programmer Analyst at a construction company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses Tableau
Tableau's strength is visualization. If a report/dashboard is presented in visualization, the end user can easily connect with the data compared to a tabular format. View full review »
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Peter Birksmith
(2IC) Senior System Analyst at a insurance company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses Tableau
Operations Perspective: The most valuable aspect of this product is the ease of deployment from the Tableau Desktop to the server, providing the ability to either connect live to a data source or create a cached dataset that can be published and updated separately. The deployment of a Tableau Workbook can even be packaged up and sent to someone with a Tableau Reader installed. This makes the solution very agile and scalable. The ability to deploy is the added ability to centralise the Tableau repository for all Tableau Developers. We have initiated a central shared directory for each Tableau platform, Dev, UAT, and PROD with each containing subdirectories for each Tableau Site and Project. Being a financial institution we must provide data segregation to comply with legislation and Data Governance policies enforced by brand segregation. Development Perspective: Ease of use is the most common call out from the developers. There is a thriving user group online that provides any number of ways to build reports quickly and easily, but the most important ability is to allow the Developer to storyboard the information in a dashboard. Tableau provides the developer a means to provide captions and business information on the dashboard to tell the story of each Workbook. This ability to break down a complex Workbook into an easy to digest narrative provides the business stakeholder a way to really understand and discover the story behind the data giving them the necessary insights and metrics. View full review »
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Cognos Solutions Architect at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Uses IBM Cognos
Cognos Analytics, or CA for short, is an enterprise level reporting platform. At the most basic level you can use it to build reports. But taking a broader look allows you to see that it covers a vast amount of ground through many different modules. The basic platform comes with several meta-modelling tools. Framework Manager allows you to build relationships between physical database tables, and even a ROLAP solution. Great for detailed or minor aggregation. Transformer is a basic cube modeling software. Best for building dimensional models over smaller datasets (a few dozen GB), it works extremely well. Dynamic Cubes is a more advanced ROLAP solution that has intelligent aggregate, query, data, and result set caching. In my experience this works best with larger data, in the TB or PB ranges. Data Modules. This is an advanced user level modelling. It allows end users to build and cache datasets which they can then use in ad-hoc dashboards and reports. On the reporting side it, again, has a few tools. Report Studio is the professional reporting environment. This allows BI Developers to create advanced reports, dashboards, analytical applications. While it does take some training, the effort is well worth it. Dashboards work against the data modules. T allows advanced users to work with the data modules they've built previously to build dashboards. Users can quickly drag in fields directly onto the canvas to make graphs, prompts, data grids. Interactivity is automatically defined (but can be defined manually) to allow users to filter one group of objects by clicking on another. Story is a tool used to create presentations. You can use elements from other reports to make a slide show or "guided journey". There are a few other tools, like Event Studio which can be set to automatically perform actions based on query outputs. There is a graph building tool that allows you to build graphs that developers can use in their reports. View full review »
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John Laws
Manager Data Services at a logistics company with 201-500 employees
Uses Birst
ETL process is excellent as well as the admin tools to set it up. Creation of the meta-data layer has been well thought out by the Birst design team. Working with the front-end Dashboard, KPI and Dashlet tools is a snap. Easy to learn and use. The Mobile version is coming on strong in 2017. Just reviewed the product with the Product Manager and it's the way forward for being used on the go. View full review »
Anonymous avatar x60
Manager, Finance Operations at a tech company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Uses Tableau
The best feature of Tableau is the usability. It allows a business user to prototype something without going through IT and spending a lot of time and money trying to translate requirements. Going back and forth, it allows you to rapidly develop things that you need to analyze the data. I also think, as I used SAP Business Objects before that and built out the reports, that you can build almost anything you need to, but it's a little more complicated. I would say Tableau is more like Apple, it just looks nice. It formats things. It just gives it to you in one way, as it assumes that is the way that everybody wants it. So it might be frustrating if Tableau doesn't give it to you the way you want. But usually, it does give it in a good enough way. So, it saves you a lot of time. View full review »
Anonymous avatar x60
Business Intelligence Manager at a real estate/law firm with 501-1,000 employees
Uses Birst
The option to build and deploy analytical models quickly, within days rather than months. We use a variety of cloud applications such as Google Analytics. Birst offered us a solution that had built-in connectors which could be used to build a fact model. We can use this to perform the standard data modelling steps: extract, transform, load, and develop scheduled reporting within weeks. View full review »
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Freek Kamst
Director BI Services at a outsourcing company with 501-1,000 employees
Uses Birst
* Cloud based: One platform with all the ETL, connectivity, report and dashboard tools in one product. This allows for faster development and no integration problems. * Network BI: This is a unique feature for data virtualization in the cloud. It enables Enterprise BI in the cloud. * The ability to deploy DWHs at lightning speed. This affords 60% faster development than traditional BI projects. * Supports mobile connectivity and interaction. All the information, anytime and anywhere on your desktop, smartphone, or tablet. * It is a step towards self-service-BI because of the user-friendly interface. This is the best cloud based BI platform/solution out there. View full review »

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