Sometimes you don’t want to read the glowing pros or vicious cons about how vendors address 1433 separate business intelligence software criteria. I think it was for those times that my colleagues came up with the idea of writing a short type of report (the vendor showdown) that graphically demonstrates how different enterprise products stack up, based on a few key high-level criteria.
The recently published BI showdown garnered some strange scorn from readers firing comments at the article. A few thought it was talking about the top three vendors as opposed to three of the top vendors. Some, like in the following comment, thought it needed more detail.
“These ‘results’ offer no information that would give a decision maker any tools to help in the selection process. I guess you get what you pay for. “
In the showdown however, my colleagues write “Your company has distinct needs and priorities that need to be supported by any enterprise solution you adopt.” They’re referring to what you’d want from those 1433 criteria we use to analyze the BI software. They’re recommending you actually do go further than just the showdown and examine the functionality in a way that makes sense for your requirements (in other words, use the BI Evaluation Center). I suppose we need to make this point more clear in future reports.
Still, I’m not sure why some people discounted analyst Lyndsay Wise’s insightful examination of why the vendors scored as they did. She brought up interesting points that you wouldn’t know just from looking at rating scores (or say, a Magic Quadrant).
The showdown offers an overview type of analysis, which is based on 1433 criteria without asking you to consider each one. While it is useful for an idea of the functional areas on which the products tend to focus, its graphs are a product of our evaluation tools, not the tools themselves.