SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform Review

Comparison of SAP BO, Tableau, QlikView, Cognos, Microsoft, OBIEE and Pentaho


Valuable Features

1. SAP BO/BI

  • Enterprise scalability
  • Security
  • Ease of use
  • Semantic layer

2. Tableau

  • Visualization
  • Data discovery
  • Turnaround time

3. IBM Cognos

  • Enterprise scalability
  • Security
  • In-memory feature

4. MS BI - Flexibility

5. Pentaho - Open source but still enterprise grade

6. QlikView

  • Data visualization
  • Turnaround time.

7. OBIEE

  • Enterprise security
  • Semantic model

Room for Improvement

1. SAP BO/BI

  • Visualization

2. Tableau

  • Scalability

3. IBM Cognos

  • Ease of use

4. MS BI

  • Visualization
  • Ease of use

5. Pentaho

  • Ease of use
  • Semantic layer

6. QlikView

  • Scalability

7. OBIEE

  • Visualization
  • Database connectivities

Use of Solution

  • I have used SAP for almost 12 years
  • Tableau – Rate 6/10 overall but 9/10 for visualization. I have used it for three years
  • IBM Cognos - Rate 7/10 and I have used it for three years
  • MS BI - Rate 5/10 and I have used it for two years
  • Pentaho - Rate 5/10 and I have used it for over five years
  • QlikView- Rate 7/10 and I have used it for two years
  • OBIEE – Rate 7/10 and I have used it for five years

Customer Service and Technical Support

Customer Service:
  • SAP BO/BI - Below average
  • Tableau - Good
  • IBM Cognos - Average
  • MS BI - Average
  • Pentaho - Average
  • QlikView - Above average
  • OBIEE - Average
Technical Support:
  • SAP BO/BI - Below average
  • Tableau - Good
  • IBM Cognos - Average
  • MS BI - Average
  • Pentaho - Average
  • QlikView - Above average
  • OBIEE - Average

Other Advice

There is no perfect solution or one size fits all. Be clear on the requirements that you are trying to meet with the tools and solutions and do a POC and thorough evaluation. Also most of the time a single vendor works better than using best of the breed solution.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
14 visitors found this review helpful
13 Comments
GaryMReal UserTOP 5POPULAR

Additional advice...considerations on selection should include: Need to integrate with applications (e.g. MS Dynamics requires SSRS), self-publishing BI, data exploration verses canned reporting, cost (there's world of difference between the tools here from free to 7 figures), level of complexity to implement, level of support needed, deployment/end-user constraints, mobility support, existing organizational knowledge, vendor direction and expected longevity, customer base...just to name a few.

05 February 15
Fundoo_BI_007Vendor

Hi Gary,
Thanks a lot for your reply and the suggestions. I agree with you that
evaluation process is not as simple as what I have pointed out but what I
have tried listing here is a very high level differentiator between the
various tools that I am hoping can act as a good starting point to narrow
down the tools for people who are looking for these. I also have a very
detailed evaluation (at the feature level) across these and other tools
that I will be posting soon.

Hope this helps.

Regards.

05 February 15
UserUser

Hi

Do you have any comments about SAP Lumira?

One of my customers needs to choose between Lumira vs the other tools.

I appreciate your feedback.

Thanks

Roberto Salazar
Servicios Analiticos Empresariales SC

05 February 15
DirectorReal UserTOP 20

In general the assessment maps to my experience with the tools, but I don't have recent hands-on experience with Cognos. No experience with SAP Lumira.
One way I have done cross-product comparisons in the past is on a scale of 1 - 10.
0 = feature doesn't exist or not supported.
1 = Basic functionality or difficult to use
10 = Class leading functionality or very easy to use

As the report says, there is no single perfect tool (in the BI & Analytics space) but this approach does take some of the subjective evaluation out of the picture. If your user community already has experience in one of the tools, don't discount the 'tribal' knowledge they have.

06 February 15
Developer at a tech services companyReal User

Hi there, where can I get an overview of SAP BusinessObjects?

18 February 15
Fundoo_BI_007Vendor

Hi,
The below url could be a good resource for you to get all the information
about SAP Busines Objects, please remember not all the documents here might
be accessible if you do not have an SAP support account but hopefully this
will get you the information that you are looking for :).

http://help.sap.com/bobip41/

18 February 15
Developer at a tech services companyReal User

Thank you. Much appreciated.

19 February 15
Alan YvesConsultantTOP 5LEADERBOARD

I would like to add another comment about how hard it is to find documents and manuals on SAP BI products if you don't have a support account, or even a simple document or if you need to do an evaluation, a proof of concept of the product you need to pay, whereas if you think of any Oracle product and tries to evaluate you can download the product, install it and on top of that you have access to an extensive learning library where you find step by step tutorials on how to set up and use the products you are interested .
Click view is another example, besides of having a great visualization resources their skills enablement is just great similar to what oracle does, you will have access to most of their trial products for evaluation and learning resources.

03 November 16
Carlos Mardinotto JuniorConsultantTOP 5LEADERBOARD

Hi there, could please comment about each aplication BI is OLAP Desktop or Web Based or bouth, because we know cube aplication its more fast cache memory acess like IBM Cognos Transfomer or TM1 .

08 November 16
Fundoo_BI_007Vendor

Hi,
If I understood your question correctly you are trying to understand if BO/BI is OLAP based desktop or web based. The answer to this is that BO is more of a ROLAP and not a traditional MOLAP like TM1 etc. In BO suite lumira has some level of in-memory capabilities but again not comparable to TM1. But today because of the nature of the backend like hadoop etc.. do we really need a MOLAP engine, at least in most scenarios? And especially when we want to make BI pervasive and self service. In my opinion MOLAP has specific role to play but now with in-memory databases and BI tools their role is reducing further.
Hope this helps, please let me know if I did not understood your question correctly.

08 November 16
Carlos Mardinotto JuniorConsultantTOP 5LEADERBOARD

Perfect, this is the point, Thanks very mutch.

09 November 16
Carlos Mardinotto JuniorConsultantTOP 5LEADERBOARD

Hi,

The ROLAP systems are able to access data in a given DBR, however, it is clear that the MOLAP base will be much faster.

The question and doubt whether as Desktop OLAP tools can "run" MOLAP cubes, as this occurs in the Congos, there is a local access layer desktop OLAP in BO ?

I appreciate if you can complement your answer.

10 November 16
Carlos Mardinotto JuniorConsultantTOP 5LEADERBOARD

Hi,

The ROLAP systems are able to access data in a given DBR, however, it is clear that the MOLAP base will be much faster "in-memory".

The question and doubt whether as Desktop OLAP tools can "run" MOLAP cubes, as this occurs in the Congos, there is a local access layer desktop OLAP in BO ?

I appreciate if you can complement your answer.

10 November 16
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