Compare SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform vs. Tableau

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Most Helpful Review
Find out what your peers are saying about SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform vs. Tableau and other solutions. Updated: January 2021.
454,950 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Quotes From Members

We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:

"It is solid and stable.""The common metadata environment means that the entire organisation has the same definition of core measures rather than these being derived in spreadsheets or specific reports.""The solution's user security is extremely effective. You can profile very well. All the users and all the functionality is protected and that includes information and data segregation."

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"I work for clients. That is my business model. Business people really like to see Tableau. They love Tableau because it is very user-friendly. The platform provides an easy to use interface, which is what most people like about it.""One of the most valuable features is that the solution allows users to build interactive dashboards. This allows the end user to modify the criteria or the filtering if need be. As far as for my personal use as a QA Engineer, I really value how extensive their API document support has been.""Scheduled extract and the multiple connectors are fantastic!""It has been the best tool to work with from a self-service point of view.""The most valuable features are data discovery and fine visualizations.""This solution has transformed us from an Excel reporting environment to one of visual exploration.""Good data flow and management.""The most valuable feature is the interface, which is user-friendly and intuitive."

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"Over the years, the product tends to rename and rebrand itself and change its direction. This is a deficit of the solution.""This solution is complex to configure and administer.""The self-service area, or dashboard, needs some improvement. While the reporting itself is great, the dashboard and Analytics Cloud are not user friendly."

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"From the developer perspective, the data connection handling the target data set is what most needs to be improved.""Improvements can be made in template support. The workbook file structure is really hard to version control. If there was some sort of version control support offered particularly for workbooks, that would help big time.""The performance could be better.""Licensing and pricing options could be made better so that more users would be able to use it.""The SQL programming functionality needs to be improved.""I would like Tableau to handle geospatial data better in terms of multiple layers and shapefiles.""Requires a lot of user training.""The charts in Tableau are quite limited."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
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"The initial cost that is set according to CPU cores is expensive.""Be careful with the Tableau Viewer's licenses, and stay with the right number of users.""The company chose to purchase a creator license for me, which was $70. With that license, you can also be an administrator. We also have 20-25 extra licenses and they cost around $20-$35 each. Those are for normal users who will be viewing the dashboards. Those are monthly charges.""Tableau's licensing is pretty straightforward and simple.""ROI is very high, but it requires a data preparation/blending tool.""The cost of the solution should be improved.""It is reasonable and cheap as compared to other major tools. It has a good price, and people go for it because of its pricing.""Pricing is not bad. It's competitive."

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Comparison Review
Guillermo (Bill) Cabiro
I do use both Tableau and QlikView. Although very different, I really like both solutions. They belong to the new BI generation known as Interactive Visual Analytics. In my opinion, QlikView has a more intuitive interface for regular users or executives that are not technical experts but the development side is a little more complex. Up to version 12 QlikView did not provide drag & drop features. If a user wanted to see something not included in the application the new object had to be created by a power user or developer because Qlikview's scripting has somewhat of a learning curve. On the positive side, QlikView's scripting is a great asset as it functions as an ETL allowing the integration of hundreds of different data sources into the same visual app. Another feature that’s extremely useful is Qlik’s proprietary Associative Model that allows the users to visualize data relationships that exist as well as those that do not. Tableau on the other hand is a lot easier to use for developers, analysts or power users who need to connect, manipulate and visualize data rather quickly. While this makes Tableau a better fit for the more analytical crowd, it may not be as appealing or intuitive to the regular or casual business users as QlikView is. Tableau has full pivot, drag & drop and drill down capabilities that are great for developers or power users. They can rotate measures and dimensions and graph them instantly using visualization best practices as suggested by… Read more »
Answers from the Community
Anonymous User
author avatarPaul Grill
Real User

Since at least 45% of BusinessObjects customers in North America also use Tableau, you would be a good company using both tools. BusinessObjects is used primarily for BI reporting and Tableau for power users wanting to do data discovery and visualization. Tableau is superior for visualization but really has no built-in BI reporting capability.

You should always choose the best tool for the job which is why so many BusinessObjects customers exist in a state of happy co-existence. There are also third party tools that allow you to integrate BusinessObjects and Tableau so you can leverage your BO investment in Tableau.

I would not advise even looking at Lumira since SAP announced its end of life a while back in preference to their new cloud based analytics platform SAC.

Full disclosure : I work for a BI solutions company that has partnered with BusinessObjects and SAP for 23 years and is also been a Tableau partner for 3 years.

author avatarreviewer1449702 (User)

Both tools have their positives and negatives. First, I should mention that I am relatively new to Tableau. I have been working on and off Tableau for about a year, but getting to work on it constantly very recently. Tableau is the best tool available in the market for data discovery and analysis. Creation of dashboards, and stories is as sample as it gets with Tableau. SAP has SAP Lumira that tries to rival Tableau but, in my opinion, its not there yet, assuming it will be at that level at some point in the future.

SAP BI has a number of tools that do very specific tasks and sometimes people new to SAP BI feel overwhelmed by them. A tool commonly used in SAP BI suite is Web Intelligence which is very powerful, sometimes for its own disadvantage. Also, if you have SAP BW, SAP HANA, or SAP ERP in your organization, the go to BI tool will be SAP BI. SAP BI doesn't have any dashboarding tools that are easy to use as Tableau. I worked with Xcelsius for 6 years and I can do a lot of things with it but never created a dashboard I like with in 20 minutes like I can with Tableau. Now SAP brought in something called Design Studio to replace Xcelsius and I think it is a new bad idea from SAP.

Rather than trying to replace BO with Tableau, I would suggest using Tableau in conjunction with BO and select a tool based on the usecase (structured reports vs dashboards)

Regards : Tableau training in pune

author avatarPaul Grill
Real User

I agree with Larry Keller's first comment that you should not be comparing Tableau with BusinessObjects - it is like comparing apples and oranges. BusinessObjects is a fully mature Business Intelligence suite which includes powerful analysis and data visualization tools.
You could certainly compare Tableau to Lumira but Tableau would probably come out ahead since Lumira is still new and catching up.

author avatarit_user75519 (BI Expert at a tech services company)

I think you have quite convincingly answered your question. IT made an
investment in Business Objects but has seen limited use/acceptance. Your
department went with an agile solution that meets your needs for quick
turnaround and excellent visualization and you want to expand that solution
much to the chagrin of IT. How dare you business users go around IT or even
think about not using the

Make friends with IT and have them buy and host/administer the Tableau
server; and if they don't agree use the hosted version in the cloud!

author avatarJhornber
Real User

I'm reiterating what has been said in one way or another but: We currently use BO for end user generated ad hoc reporting, which it works well for, but I wouldn't even consider it for use in the way one would utilize Tableau or other similar data visualization/exploration/dashboarding tools (though admittedly I've never looked into Lumira). Likewise, I wouldn't use Tableau as a primary canned and/or ad hoc reporting tool as this is not where it shines.

author avatarH.Emre Arıkan
Real User

Sure, if you have the desktop, you need the server product to publish your results. Then considering Tableau server is absolutely legitimate.
Using Tableau desktop should be able to free up IT-resources already. You can ask the BO fans in the company, - in the case of choosing BO as the only platform- if they are ready to adopt the work on Tableau-desktop, and are they going to be able to provide on the fly reports/analysis as your team does with Tableau at the moment.

author avatarit_user85368 (Business Applications Manager at a construction company)

If your HR team feels happy with Tableau and at the same time you can get their active involvement and their promise to develop and support it today
and future managers of information systems, go for the Tableau server solution. My past experience is that using Tableau at the users side, we as an IT team had no change request, users were self-serviced and happy. This was not the case at the same time with some other user communities at the same company using Business Objects. The second community never managed to be self-serviced. Engage IT Team in the areas of Tableau server to all
other Applications servers you need to get your data automatically (eg
HRIS , ERP) and leave your "specialists" and experienced HR users in the
areas of reporting. They know, they "feel" the data better

author avatarit_user3891 (Architect with 1,001-5,000 employees)

Given familiarity with the Tableau toolset, and assuming that it meets your current and projected needs the choice is clear indeed... e.g. if your needs are met by MS Access - why use full-fledged RDBMS such as Oracle? :)

Switching to BusinessObjects at this point would bring little to your specific environment (scalability, for one), and would gobble up your IT resources - not free them up.

Questions from the Community
Top Answer: There are many...It would rather depend what System BI architecture or Enterprise legacy you have at your end...I would recommend as follows:  1) If you have legacies of SAP, Oracle  - look for SAP… more »
Top Answer: Since at least 45% of BusinessObjects customers in North America also use Tableau, you would be a good company using both tools. BusinessObjects is used primarily for BI reporting and Tableau for… more »
Top Answer: It depends on the Data architecture and the complexity of your requirement. Some great tools in the market are Qlik sense, Power BI, OBIEE, Tableau etc. I have recently started using Cognos Enterprise… more »
Top Answer: There are platforms available that enable bridge between technologies. Tableau/Qlik is great visualization from performance and user interface as compared to SAS -
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Also Known As
SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform, SAP BusinessObjects, Business ObjectsTableau Desktop, Tableau Server, Tableau Online

The SAP® BusinessObjects™ Business Intelligence (BI) platform is a flexible, scalable information infrastructure that helps you more easily discover and share insights for better business decisions. The integrated, unified infrastructure enables scalability from one to many tools and interfaces on premise, in the cloud, or as a hybrid approach.

Tableau helps people and organizations become more data-driven as the trusted leader in analytics.

The Tableau platform provides the breadth and depth of capabilities to serve the needs of even the largest global enterprises in a seamless, integrated experience. Tableau is designed to fit, not dictate your data strategy, and adapts to your environment with unmatched flexibility and choice, while meeting the toughest governance and security requirements.

People love using Tableau because it is both powerful and intuitive—and offers a fundamentally different user experience by empowering people of all skill levels to explore and analyze data using visuals and natural language. Tableau has become the standard language of analytics for modern business users and continues to lead the industry with the most passionate and engaged user community in analytics, a customer base with millions of users at more than 80,000 organizations, and a deep commitment to customer-focused innovation

Evaluation Guide: How to choose the right BI & analytics platform

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Sample Customers
SRAM, Kennametal, Fairfax Water, British American Tobacco, Velux, and FedEx.Accenture, Adobe,, Bank of America, Charles Schwab Corp, Citigroup, Coca-Cola Company, Cornell University, Dell, Deloitte, Duke University, eBay, Exxon Mobil, Fannie Mae, Ferrari, French Red Cross, Goldman Sachs, Google, Government of Canada, HP, Intel, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Macy's, Merck, The New York Times, PayPal, Pfizer, US Army, US Air Force, Skype, and Walmart.
Top Industries
Manufacturing Company13%
Healthcare Company13%
Energy/Utilities Company13%
Consumer Goods Company10%
Computer Software Company34%
Comms Service Provider14%
Manufacturing Company6%
Financial Services Firm14%
Healthcare Company8%
Manufacturing Company7%
Computer Software Company30%
Comms Service Provider13%
Media Company8%
Financial Services Firm7%
Company Size
Small Business32%
Midsize Enterprise18%
Large Enterprise50%
Small Business26%
Midsize Enterprise20%
Large Enterprise54%
Small Business24%
Midsize Enterprise6%
Large Enterprise70%
Find out what your peers are saying about SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform vs. Tableau and other solutions. Updated: January 2021.
454,950 professionals have used our research since 2012.

SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is ranked 6th in Business Intelligence (BI) Tools with 5 reviews while Tableau is ranked 1st in Business Intelligence (BI) Tools with 25 reviews. SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is rated 8.8, while Tableau is rated 8.2. The top reviewer of SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform writes "Once you are stable on a BusinessObjects release, it is worth staying there for a while". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Tableau writes "Lets me train new users quickly, easily, and intuitively". SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is most compared with SAP Analytics Cloud, Microsoft BI, Oracle OBIEE, Qlik Sense and Google Data Studio, whereas Tableau is most compared with SAS Visual Analytics, Microsoft BI, ELK Kibana, Oracle OBIEE and IBM Cognos. See our SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform vs. Tableau report.

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