Birst Review

Provides ETL, connectivity, report, and dashboard tools.


What is most valuable?

  • 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: (The ability to share data marts/stores/ERP/CRM/RDBMS data, etc.) 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.

How has it helped my organization?

We are a vendor/partner, so we have been able to create a valuable business model for migrating our customers from legacy systems to this cloud BI platform. Internally, we are gradually introducing this product enterprise-wide to support various operational divisions. As a partner we host our own Appliances for the SMB market in the Benelux area.

What needs improvement?

  • Release management and version control are poor or not available. As a partner you have to organize your own version control and release management system.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been running our own Birst cloud for five years.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

No, the support is very good.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We had a few issues relating to older versions, but these have long since been eradicated.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not encountered any scalability issues. Just follow the guidelines on hardware/software requirements and this will scale fine.

How is customer service and technical support?

Customer Service:

The level of customer service is very high. Every customer has it's own CSM (Customer Success Manager) which is taking care of open issues. The CSM contacts the customer on a regular frequency and is the single point of contact for the organization.

Technical Support:

They excel in this area as the technical support is truly outstanding.

Which solutions did we use previously?

We were not using a previous solution. We were looking to enter the market with a cloud based offering. We wanted to differentiate ourselves by providing consultancy and support for a multitude of traditional BI legacy systems.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was pretty straightforward. Our time to market was impressive.

What about the implementation team?

We implemented Birst with our own specialized team.

What was our ROI?

Our ROI is based on reselling subscriptions and providing professional services to our customer.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing and licensing structure is based on a subscription model. Comparing pricing with other tools is difficult, because hosting costs are included in the total package. Always calculates the TCO over three years and then you'll see that the subscription model is 40% - 65% cheaper.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at QlikView, Tableau , and Birst.

What other advice do I have?

If you are serious about a cloud-based BI solution, then Birst has great value. This option will help your enterprise reduce costs and create a ‘one version of the truth’ report and a data warehousing solution.

If you are looking for a solution that replicates the creation of thousands of lists/reports, then Cloud BI is not really the solution.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: We're partners in the Benelux, but also using Birst internally.
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