April 11, 2012 – Expectations with BI over the last year are leading to a greater need for diversity and agility among vendors and their offerings, according to a new report from independent research firm Ovum.

Ovum’s “Decision Matrix: Selecting a Business Intelligence Vendor,” scopes BI trends during the last year and ranks responses and releases from a select list of the top vendors.

The report indicated that strained budgets are hitting up against wider nets cast over maturing BI capabilities with analytics, visualizations, data volumes and governance. This conflict has given enterprises new levels of expectations with BI, which has benefited those vendors and offerings with more agility and personalization, according to Ovum. 

Ovum Senior Analyst Surya Mukherjee says that a review of top business intelligence vendors along with the general market place shows increasing evidence that enterprises expect BI implementations to do much more than just speed up infrastructures.

“To keep delivering even the same level of insights as a decade ago, BI vendors and their solutions need to be more agile and adaptive than ever,” says Mukherjee. “It must also encompass elements of self-service, mobility and collaboration.”

Overall, the BI market is undergoing “healthy growth rates” in defiance of financial fears in Europe and other industry spaces. That BI growth has come partially from new license revenue over the last year, as enterprises update analytics expectations and investments, according to the report.

Ovum held a broad definition of BI for the report, including reporting, data management and performance management. Citing core market consolidation, the research firm ranked only eight vendors’ range of solutions under three categories: leader, those “widely accepted” as best-of-breed; challenger, the solutions with good market position and sales; and follower, ones with less broad applicability. IBM and SAS were the two vendors to fall under the “leader” ranking, with MicroStrategy, Oracle and SAP in the “challenger” segment. Microsoft, QlikTech and Pentaho fell under Ovum’s “follower” category.

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