1. QlikView Scripting - Takes some time to learn, but it is very powerful. Not as a total ETL replacement tool necessarily, but as a supplement to load and join data sources, perform additional transformations, add supplemental inline tables, and even at times, output a final .txt/.csv for consumption by other tools (even Tableau!). I've combined as many as a half dozen data sources including data from multiple SQL Data Marts, Teradata Data Marts,Source System DBs, XLS, CSV, and Google Big Query.
2. Design Flexibility - While other products may do drag and drop, ad-hoc reporting analytics better. (Including Tableau, and Qlik's new product QlikSense) I've not come across one that better supports the creation of a polished, packaged, custom dashboard, that supports what I'd consider "guided exploration", and best meets the needs of our user base. The customization can be taken even further through in-house built, or borrowed, extensions (e.g. Custom D3 Visualizations).
Improvements to My Organization
We have gradually reduced laborious manual reporting in Business Units and "spreadmarts". We now have some executive using QV dashboards in weekly review meetings, in place of spreadsheets and PowerPoints. While it does take some time and IT involvement to initially develop and deploy a solution, the payback is immediate. In one particular case we were able to eliminate a days worth of manual work with a QlikView solution that required a few days of development effort. We also previously had no way for end users to routinely and easily analyze larger (100 Million+ rows) data sets, which now can be done through QlikView.
Room for Improvement
No out of the box mapping capabilities (Extensions/Plugins available).
No auto-scale for different display resolutions/dimensions, but the trade-off here is the much greater design flexibility than one gets with a Grid based product.
Would like to see a few more visualizations available out of the box (e..g Bullet Graph)
Very rudimentary report creation and PDF capabilities No scheduling or distribution without Publisher product.
Use of Solution
None thus far, but have a relatively small scale implementation (30-40 Users to date), on a single server (196GB RAM, 15 Core). Our largest data sets are in the 100-200 Million rows. Dashboards deployed to the server perform very well, but working with data sets that large locally (on QlikView desktop) may start to lag, depending on your hardware. Being a in-memory tool, desktops and laptops should have at least 8GB RAM, though even more is preferable if working with very large data sets.
Customer Service and Technical Support
Customer service was/is excellent. Technical Support
Our need for technical support has been minimal, but when needed it has been great. The overall Qlik Community is phenomenal. Many problems can be resolved through the community channel. Users often provide example files one can reference or reverse engineer.
Previously used an older Domo product (Centerview). The product was no longer supported. It was very flexible, but also very labor intensive. Data had to be fully prepared outside of the tool ,and every interaction had to be defined. Development time was weeks vs days in QlikView.
Currently also using Tableau, depending on the particular use case.
Straightforward setup. Connected to Active Directory to manage users.
In-house with some set up assistance provided by the Qlik sales support team.
Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing
Server is Apprx $35K initial cost, plus 20% annual maintenance/support cost
User licenses are $350 or $1500 depending on license type(plus 20% annual maintenance/support). This can get costly if you have a very large user base.
Other Solutions Considered
I would never propose QlikView, or any other single tool, as THE definitive data visualization and dashboard tool for every organization, but it did best meet our particular needs. Organizations with more data-savvy, self-sufficient business users may find a product like Tableau, or Qlik's other product, QlikSense, to be a better option.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Feb 23 2016