What is our primary use case?
I am the Executive Manager in the CEO's office and we partner with TIBCO. We deal with Spotfire, and also with TIBCO Business Works. Within Africa, we have the largest consulting group that focuses on TIBCO tools. We use the solution at the First National Bank, where they need it in conjunction with one of the other TIBCO tools that deal with data analytics. We incorporated it for live data to deal with fraudulent activities occurring within the bank. There is a niche team that focuses on the project, probably around 20 people. They get the job done. The team includes IT managers and admin staff. They focus on the back aspect. There are also integrators who liaise with DBA, ensuring the entire system is connected gently. Finally, there are the business users, they're after the reports. If they require something extra then the team provides that for them.
What is most valuable?
What is most valuable is the fact that you're able to set things like email groups. The idea that you don't have to generate reports each day but they are sent automatically is great. In our case, we set it on a daily basis. Each morning an email goes out to relevant parties informing them of reports that have been generated and would be of interest to them.
What needs improvement?
I would have to say the installation process could be improved. In Spotfire, for example, there are parts that you have to install in terms of getting the data from the database, then there's the Spotfire web aspect to it and the Spotfire desktop portion. It requires three different applications in order to achieve what you need. A single installation file would be a big improvement.
For additional features, I would like more templates. The templates we get are more focused on specific fields but they don't include, for example, a template for the mining sector. Additional templates would help to get things moving more quickly in terms of getting the report out.
For how long have I used the solution?
I've been using the product since 2010.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
It's quite a stable product. The bugs we found were not necessarily to do with TIBCO Spotfire itself. The DBA can change the credentials, or location of the database, and then we're unable to generate the report. But this is something they should have communicated with us internally.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
It is definitely easy to scale. Even when moving between the different versions, you have the ability to export your previous setup of reports and import it to the new version. And if you want to set up on different nodes, it's actually quite easy.
How are customer service and technical support?
The technical support is fine. Initially, we try to solve an issue ourselves, if we can't we will go to the TIBCO support site, and log a ticket. Most of the time they will send us a link to a solution that has been provided before to others. If that's not the case then we will have a WebEx where they remotely connect to our systems, and assist in solving the issue. The only snag for us is the time difference, because the support people are normally overseas. We are in South Africa, they are in the US, so it requires coordination and one of us will have to stay after hours in order for the issue to be solved.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
We previously used IBM Cognos.
How was the initial setup?
The initial setup was quite complex. I did it by myself. Between 2010 and 2012 I was working for TIBCO South Africa and those are the tools that we were using. Then I moved to other companies but still continued the implementation process.
What other advice do I have?
It's a very user-friendly solution, generating the report is also quite easy, which wasn't the case when we used Cognos and weren't able to get the information we needed. We found that TIBCO Spotfire was actually the better tool for our needs. In this sector of the market, it is indeed a better tool than the other data analytics tool, such as QlikView, for example.
I would rate this product an eight out of 10. There's still some room for improvement.
Which deployment model are you using for this solution?