Takeaways from Gartner BI & Analytics Summit 2016
A few years ago BI Builders had ambitions to both have a product that is ready for the international market and have the economy and resource opportunity be a participant and sponsor at a Gartner Group Summit, we reached this goal this year. We were excited about learning and participating on the Gartner presentations of market trends and developments, about meeting Gartner Analysts 1-to-1, and about meeting customers and partners.
The conference was arranged at two levels with Solution Showcase area (stand area) on both floors. As we walked up the stairs we saw our BI Builders stand immediately – so everyone walking upstairs will see us and pass our stand – Great!
The Solution Showcase was pretty quiet Monday morning because of Key note speakers in the main conference hall. Throughout the day and Tuesday, more and more people “discovered” the upstairs area and around lunch-time we had many visitors to our stand, interested in hearing about Data Warehouse Automation (DWA), and how Xpert BI could make all SAP data available for flexible analysis on MS SQL server.
BI Builders also had a sponsored session with speaker Lars Herman Løkkeberg, corporate business controller at Brynild Gruppen, who talked about how and why they selected Xpert BI and SQL Server as their data warehouse platform.
He did a great presentation and talked about important factors such as changeability, total solution life cycle cost, and avoidance of personal dependence.
It was exciting to market both Norwegian high-quality software and Norwegian high-quality candy.
We also got to attend a variety of Gartner speaker sessions. It is assuring to hear that Gartner, while promoting and encouraging companies to embrace new technologies, emphasizes that the “Four Pillars for Successful Business Analytics” has not changed and that minimum 80% of all the analytical activity is based on structured data, preferably from data warehouses, data marts and cubes etc. New technology does not eliminate, but rather increases the need for Data Governance, Strategy and Structure.
As an afterthought, it is quite fascinating that of all the exhibitors at the Summit all except 2 focused mainly on Data Analytics, Data Discovery, Advanced Self Service and/or Data Science tools – that is the new, emerging “hyped” technologies, included into what Gartner calls Mode 2 of the data warehouse and analytics architecture, when most of the customers and attendees still have issues with managing the structured and governed, enterprise data models and architectures. That is Mode 1.
So even though traditional data warehouse is no longer a “HOT” topic, it is still very relevant. And when introducing DWA tools such as Xpert BI into the Mode 1 architectures, the characteristics of Mode 2 to be agile, short cycle times and process-based – That is the “sprinter mode” – can also be transferred to Mode 1. Also, with the use of DWA tools the risk involved with implementing data warehouse projects is substantially lower.
Our takeaways from this Summit is firstly that DWA tools like Xpert BI are even more relevant now and in the foreseeable future with a very increasing and changing demand for “ALL DATA”, and that structure and governance for enterprise data is becoming even more important.
Secondly, another very valuable takeaway is the 1-to-1 conversation and consultation with key Gartner analysts in the data warehouse area. They gave us specific information and advice on how to fit Xpert BI into the current and future EDW architectures and to further expand our product to the future market for DWA tools.