SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is the #5 ranked solution in our list of top Business Intelligence Tools. It is most often compared to Microsoft BI: SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform vs Microsoft BI

What is SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform?

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.

SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is also known as SAP BusinessObjects BI Platform, SAP BusinessObjects, Business Objects.

SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform Buyer's Guide

Download the SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: August 2021

SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform Customers

SRAM, Kennametal, Fairfax Water, British American Tobacco, Velux, and FedEx.

SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform Video

Pricing Advice

What users are saying about SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform pricing:
  • "We purchase licenses through Epic. So, we get an Epic price as opposed to the SAP price. If we were going to use other products like Webby that they offer or exclusively use BI Launch Pad, it would cost a lot because half of our employees would touch it in some fashion. So, we use Epic-Crystal integration to keep the licensing cost down. I believe the BI Launch Pad licensing is something like $800 for each, and the Crystal Report licensing is something like $500 for each, but that's not what we pay."
  • "I have always found SAP BI to be expensive. It is expensive even when you compare SAP BI Cloud with Microsoft Power BI. Power BI is probably around $9.99 per month, and the cheapest SAP BI is around $20, which is double. In terms of price, Power BI is definitely a lot better. If you have budget issues, you may want to go for Power BI."

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Paul Grill
President & CEO at Infosol Inc
Real User
Top 5
Once you are stable on a BusinessObjects release, it is worth staying there for a while
It is true that there are often challenges when upgrading between releases of BusinessObjects but this has always been the case as it has been for all the other BI and software application vendors too. A few rules of thumb for BusinessObjects software are: 1. Never upgrade to an x.0 release - always wait for at least the x.1 release and even the first or second service pack of that release 2. Never attempt to perform a release upgrade if you have not done one before. Get training and experience first or use a reputable BO Consulting company 3. Experiment with the new release on a sandbox environment to become familiar with the changes and find any major issues before attempting a migration to production Once you are stable on a BusinessObjects release, it is worth staying…
JB
Manager Data Analytics and Interfaces at a healthcare company with 5,001-10,000 employees
Real User
Integrates seamlessly within our Epic environment, provides flexibility for numerous data resources, and operates efficiently

What is our primary use case?

We use it almost exclusively for our analytics for the Epic environment. So, a lot of healthcare-related reporting and financial reporting is done on it. It is not geared towards the operational world. It is geared towards the analytical world where we're looking at a month of data, a year of data, or a quarter of data. We try to use its current version.

Pros and Cons

  • "I like the fact that we can integrate it seamlessly within our Epic environment, but probably the best thing that Crystal Reports offers is the ability to do visualizations. They're simple to do, and they're catchy. So, it is a really great tool."
  • "It has got great flexibility. As a reporting tool, it has a great deal of flexibility for numerous data resources that you can bring into it. It allows you to write your SQL query directly within the product. So, it allows you to do server-side joins instead of pulling all the data into Crystal Report to aggregate that data. It has great visualization. For the most part, it operates quite efficiently."
  • "We're an Epic shop, and Epic is moving away from Crystal. It would be nice if it had tighter integration with products like Epic. It would be awesome to have better integration with third-party products."
  • "They could reduce the licensing expenses. There is nothing really wrong with the product in terms of what it does. It works well. If you are a part of BI Launch Pad, then you could run ad hoc reporting, but for the integration, you need access to BI Launch Pad, which is quite expensive. We're an organization with 18,000 employees. It is not really practical to give people access to BI Launch Pad. So, from a customer perspective, in terms of saturating our employee base, we don't really have great saturation because of the expense."

What other advice do I have?

I would advise others to get somebody who knows what they're doing when they install it. That's what we did. It is a complex product, and trying to fumble through all the bits and pieces and the nuances of it is challenging. It has been around for years. It has been there ever since I went to software engineering. It does what it does. It is built to do that every year. It just needs to get more efficient at doing it. It just needs better integration with third parties and maybe a price reduction for the licensing. I would rate this solution an eight out of 10.
Learn what your peers think about SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: August 2021.
535,919 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Paul Grill
President & CEO at Infosol Inc
Real User
Top 5
Using Xcelsius dashboard instead of Qlikview
When I first started presenting Xcelsius dashboards back in 2006, I said that it should carry a warning sign stating “May Cause Xtreme Xcitement”! Despite all the advances in technology and tools over the last decade that statement not only remains true today, but maybe should be changed to “Will Cause Xtreme Xcitement”. In the last month, I have both seen and heard stories from companies singing the praises of Xcelsius and hailing it as the savior of BI user adoption in their organizations. A company specializing in reporting and analysis of employee business travel was looking for a client facing BI application that would help sell their solution. The client showed me their current solution running in Qlikview bemoaning how rigid, limiting and unexciting it was…
MM
Data Science Manager at a comms service provider with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Very good dashboards and self-service BI

What is our primary use case?

We are only using the dashboards and promoting the self-service BI features. the usage is limited just to visualization. We integrated dashboards for monitoring KPIs. sending SMS' is used based on threshold in few dashboards. Otherwise, it's more used for visualization and not data mining because it requires some licenses that we didn't buy.

Pros and Cons

  • "The features that I have found most valuable are that we are able to build all dashboards with self-service BI and are able to provide our business users with self-service BI. We are building a repository on top of our data warehouse and building all the dashboards and KPIs."
  • "It would be good if they could integrate the possibility for end users to create end models for themselves that they can use, especially for site operators, and if they could provide the end user not only the self-service BI, but also the self-service analytics, based on a predefined model, the same way that Oracle did."

What other advice do I have?

SAP is a stable solution, but you need to have multi-experts to be able to maintain it. The biggest console that we implemented is using SAP as a self-service BI. It is an incentive for business users and different stakeholders, to be able to use the self-service BI and answer their questions instantly. This is conditioning that we as IT are using the right models, the right repository, and requiring all the data for them. On a scale of one to ten, I would rate SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform an eight.
DM
EAM Executive at a educational organization with 5,001-10,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
A scalable solution for large organizations

What is our primary use case?

Right now, we're using SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform for an in-house project — we don't have any customers. I work for an educational institute — in the main reporting area. I create different reports based on student performance using exam results and other data from various schools. In our university, we have around 20 different departments. One for Computer Science, one for Engineering, one for Audio Civil, one for Electronics, etc. I was planning to build a consolidated report that would show how our students are performing compared to other schools — a consolidated… more »

Pros and Cons

  • "SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform is definitely scalable."
  • "There should be more integration with other platforms."

What other advice do I have?

Although I haven't been able to use the BI portion, I would give this solution rating of eight.
Paul Kellett
BI Practioner - Consultant at KIS Ltd
Real User
Top 5
Good reporting and promotes a common view of information across the organisation

What is our primary use case?

I have several use cases, generally in more complex environments. These are typically corporate, requiring functionality such as strong data security, bursting, metadata-based support, scalability, fault tolerance, load balancing, support for high volume, breadth of functionality in one set of products, etc. It has been used in Retail, Construction, Banks, and Insurance organisations. It works well for organisations where a structured, common, and more disciplined view of larger, more complex information is required. This is generally with more complex and multiple source systems with larger… more »

Pros and Cons

  • "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."
  • "This solution is complex to configure and administer."

What other advice do I have?

I am a great believe in choosing a commercially successful product rather than technical best of breed as there is nothing worse than having an 'orphan' product. That being a product that is poorly supported, does not have a development path and limited availability of expertise. Business Objects is a commercially successful product and despite SAP's poor management of the product is likely to continue to be so.
Popoola Adams
Director at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
Real User
Top 20
Robust in terms of security and integration, quite scalable, and good for building well-formatted reports

Pros and Cons

  • "If I were to compare it with Power BI and I wanted to build proper well-formatted reports, BusinessObjects Business Intelligence does that much better. Power BI is just getting into that space. They've concentrated more on visualization, which is what the SAP Lumira does. With Web Intelligence, you are able to build reports that users can interact with. They can also do a lot of querying themselves. It is robust in terms of security and integration. It is also quite scalable."
  • "I don't like the fact that I have to use two tools. Web Intelligence is good for reporting and all kinds of stuff, but I would rather have one product. All the reporting features of Web Intelligence should be developed within Lumira. A lot of predictive abilities have been brought into the cloud version of SAP Analytics. It would be nice to see a lot of newer technologies and AI. Predictive capabilities are becoming a little more standard. Instead of having to get another model, we are just looking for one solution to deal with analytics including predictive."

What other advice do I have?

I will be a bit biased, and I would definitely recommend SAP BI. It is a bit more robust and mature as compared to Power BI. Power BI keeps changing every day, which is not a bad thing considering how old it is. For a serious setup, I would rather use SAP BI, but I look forward to having one tool rather than two. I would rate SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence Platform an eight out of ten.
MC
Business Intelligence Functional Manager BU SAP at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
MSP
Top 20
Easy to manage with good features for broadcasting information or scheduling reports

Pros and Cons

  • "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."
  • "The self-service area, or dashboard, needs some improvement. While the reporting itself is great, the dashboard and Analytics Cloud are not user friendly."

What other advice do I have?

We are working with an older version also well as the latest version of the solution. I would recommend this product to other organizations. It's a stable and powerful enterprise solution. Everything from the broadcasting to the scheduling, to the user management and the reporting, is very powerful. 90% of customers end up asking for a solid and consistent reporting solution. In these cases, I definitely suggest SAP Business Objects Platform. That said, the dashboard isn't the best with this product. It should be noted that SAP is working on their dashboards offerings in Cloud environment…
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Buyer's Guide
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