MicroStrategy Review

I like MSTR architect resembles data modelling for attribute relations/hierarchies; MSTR web has numerous options for end users.

Valuable Features

MicroStrategy has a lot of features. If the developers and end-users know how to use it in depth, it is one awesome BI tool.

MicroStrategy Architect is kind of a data modelling tool available in the MicroStrategy Desktop. It is used to maintain the relationships among the attributes. It is a really useful tool, especially when you have to modify the relationships/hierarchies; you do not need to go to the database to do the changes. Instead, you can use this architect to define them.

MSTR generates SQL automatically for every object you pull on to the report. It has many options available in the VLDB properties where you can optimize the SQL.

Web is an amazing tool for end users. You can customize the reports, create new ad-hoc reports, modify the existing static reports and apply sorting, filtering, pivoting, etc. Admins can define the access levels to the users based on their right to view/modify the sensitive data. Access levels can be defined at many levels; at project level, folder level, report level to the developers, standard users, project owners/directors.

Improvements to My Organization

The security filters concept was very useful for our requirements. It was like we had to use same database tables (backend) and report structure (frontend) for different countries but each country should not see the others’ data. In this case, we can apply security filters in the web environment to the user groups specific to the country.

Data blending is also a good feature. With this, you can insert objects from more than one dataset in a single grid or graph in the dashboard. This allows users to create their own custom dashboards from multiple datasets.

Room for Improvement

The visual insight tool can be improved further. When I tried with Tableau, it has a wide variety of graphs to generate quick and easy.

The graphical interpretations developed from the reports are not directly usable for dynamic analysis and formatting takes longer. the graphs do not indicate trends on their own. Whereas in Tableau, developing dashboards from the scratch is easy and super fast and dashboards look great without formatting.

But I heard MSTR version 10 has come up with many features; yet to try.

Use of Solution

I have used it for five years.

Stability Issues

I have not encountered any stability issues so far.

Scalability Issues

I have not encountered any scalability issues so far.

Customer Service and Technical Support

I am not really a great fan of tech support, because my project’s issues didn't get solved or the response was not quick.

However, there is a discussion forum on the MicroStrategy Community site. You can post any technical/tool-based questions and you will get a fast response. It also has a knowledge base, which has many posts/tech notes written to provide solutions to the different kinds of problems. This community is really awesome, with many blogs/articles on MSTR.

Previous Solutions

MicroStrategy was the first tool I worked on in five years. But I would probably switch to Tableau if I needed to work on visual insights and utilize a variety of graphs.

Initial Setup

Initial setup was quite straightforward and easier to me.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

The price is too high. They could at least increase the software evaluation period.

Other Solutions Considered

We didn't evaluate any other tools; the requirements we received from customers instructed us to work with MSTR.

Other Advice

MSTR is a great tool for reporting. Especially for big organisations, it is very stable. Training is a must for the developers who want to play with the options available in and out of the tool.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
1 Comment
author avatarOrlee Gillis

Anusha, until these features are (hopefully) updated, what is preventing your reports from being directly usable? Are these findings that you were able to derive easily when using Tableau? I'd love to hear your feedback.

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