Comparing business intelligence and analytics solutions

The business intelligence and analytics landscape

Business intelligence and analytics have evolved over time, and in a world of growing data complexity, Sisense occupies a unique spot within the business intelligence (BI) landscape.  

Organizations started with legacy Bl tools, which have strong data-crunching capabilities but a process that is cumbersome, IT-centric, and slow. The next incremental improvement of BI and data discovery tools is much easier to use, but adoption of analytics remains a challenge, because the growth of data threatens to outstrip the capacity of some current platforms.

As data sizes are expected to continue increasing at a jaw-dropping 19,000% by 2025, many existing solutions buckle under the pressures of such big or disparate data, forcing users to rely on additional third-party tools to ensure steady and accurate results. Furthermore, most current solutions require users to change the way they work and get out of their standard workflow to find data, hope a dashboard exists that answers their question, and go back to their workflow.   

Organizations already understand that they need to be data-driven, because all of this data holds so much untapped potential. However, they know they cannot rely on adoption-dependent analytics to be successful, and they need to embrace innovation. Optimizing analytics, maximizing its use and its benefits, involves a fresh approach that makes analytics a natural part of everyone’s day-to-day work. This is achieved by infusing analytics directly into workflows, processes, and applications so that intelligence is automatic, seamless, and unavoidable. 

The future of analytics will see the robust, end-to-end scalability of business requirements found with legacy tools, combined with the agility and self-service capabilities of modern data discovery, in a new way that infuses analytics at exactly the right place at the right time to optimize results and maximize usability.

By leveraging technology like Sisense, organizations will be able to process large volumes of disparate data while dramatically simplifying its preparation so that everyone, regardless of skill level, can analyze, explore, and augment their intelligence with machine learning to uncover powerful forward-looking insights.  

Sisense goes beyond business intelligence to market disruption with AI-driven technology that instantly infuses analytics everywhere.

Sisense Bl and analytics software overview

At Sisense, we think about analytics differently. We go beyond standard business intelligence to help organizations of all sizes achieve their business outcomes. As an innovation leader in the agile BI and analytics market and a complete business analytics platform, we  future-proof your evolving data strategy by fusing your use cases, business objectives, and technical requirements together, regardless of your existing or future tech stack.  

One platform for all skill levels and use cases

  • Connect data from anywhere with access to your data of any size or location. Easily combine and clean data to leverage every important variable.
  • Analyze and explore data, with or without code, to allow everyone to visually explore and interact with data in their own way — all in one platform.
  • Augment every analysis with  AI and machine learning in our patent-pending technology that powers built-in natural language capabilities and predictive analytics to ensure anyone can understand the impacts and reasons in the data.
  • Infuse intelligence everywhere with unique actionable intelligence that goes beyond standard dashboards and reports — although we have that too — that can automate multiple steps in a workflow and make analytics a natural and intuitive part of the process. 

What you can achieve: Scalable insights and value

Connect your data and get up and running instantly. Get fast results with an ROI of weeks or months. With our highly flexible platform, available on-premises, on the cloud, or in a hybrid format, you have accessibility and mobility of data and dashboards to everyone, everywhere. Skip the expensive IT investment and choose a subscription plan that gives you everything you need to succeed, with no surprises, ever.

Key criteria when considering BI and analytics platforms

BI and analytics evolution comparison

ArchitectureWhich components of the Bl stack are provided:
ETL, analytical database, visualizations
Supported DataSimple: One data source and a few tables
Complex: Multiple data sources and multiple tables
ScalabilityThe volume of data a single server can process and the number of concurrent users
Time to DeploymentThe time it takes to launch the Bl solution
Data Model DevelopmentHow is data accessed and processed for queries and visualization
Extensibility & EmbeddabilityJavaScript, JS libraries, REST API, white-labeling options, iFrame, custom plug-ins
Data Preparation ResponsibilityThe ability to clean, structure, and join data sources for analysis
Solution Deployment: ServerOn-premises, private or public cloud, multi-cloud and hybrid, desktop or web-based, managed services
Maintenance CostsVaries: Based on the number of steps, resources, and time to make data performant and accessible to users
Reporting and Analysis MaintenanceThe effort needed to produce reports and analysis on an ongoing basis: low, medium, high
AI and Machine LearningThe ability to infuse AI and machine learning into analytics, dashboards, and reports

1. Data visualization tools


These tools will help you understand patterns, trends, and insights by transforming data into a visual context. They can connect to multiple data sources, both cached and live, cloud-based and on-premises, however large or small.

They enable you to conduct ad hoc analysis, and, as more data is introduced from multiple data sources, tools, and capabilities such as ETL, data blending, and SQL, they enable you to handle the dramatic increase in data volume and ensure that you optimize the impact of your analytics.

CriterionData Visualization ToolsSisenseBusiness Benefits With Sisense
ArchitectureSeparate tools, or modularized:
ETL, analytical database, visualizations
All-in-oneFlexibility to connect any existing infrastructure, lower TCO
Supported DataSimpleSimple and complexLower IT burden to manage data model, views, and performance; ability to gather more value from more data
Data Scalability (Tables/Data/Users)Optimized for 3-5 tables/2 GB/per desktopOptimized for up to 25+ tables/500 GB/1000s users per serverBroaden business user audience who can explore data without increasing costs
Time to DeploymentDepends on complexity of data and project scope
Days/weeksFaster ROI, instant insights
Data Model DevelopmentVaries by vendor:
API, SDK, JavaScript, iFrame
API, SDK, JavaScript, iFrame, JS libraries, RESTNew revenue-generating product or service streams; increased customer value proposition
Extensibility & EmbeddabilityVaries by vendor:
API, SDK, JavaScript, iFrame
API, SDK, JavaScript, iFrame, JS libraries, RESTNew revenue-generating product or service streams; increased customer value proposition
Data Preparation ResponsibilityIT, OBA SQL expertMin. SQL experience/analystLower operational costs leveraging existing skill sets and without additional training or consulting
Solution Deployment: Reporting & AnalysisVaries by vendor: desktop, web-basedWeb-basedFlexible deployment, faster time to insight
Reporting & Analysis MaintenanceMedium to high, depending on IT requirements to make data performant and availableLowLower cost, lower IT burden
AI and Machine Learning (ML)Limited AI and ML depending on the platform, may require additional products or programsAI throughout with patent-pending technology that automatically highlights insights, built-in predictive analytics, deeper data exploration, and moreInfuse AI and ML into analytics, dashboards, and reports for a deeper exploratory environment and more ways to engage with data, leading to faster time to insight, action, and impact, and predictive analytics capabilities

2. Legacy Bl tools


Legacy Bl tools are pieces of large-scale enterprise software that aim to provide a comprehensive solution to all of an organization’s data needs, from storage to reporting.

These solutions are powerful, robust, and rich in analytical capabilities and reporting functions, and the typical Bl project owner needs to be technically oriented.

 There may be a long wait time for results as the expert will need to devote days or weeks to generate new reports or make changes to the underlying data model.

Legacy Bl tools are a good fit for larger enterprises and environments in which predefined production reports are built to support business processes and operational reporting.

CriterionLegacy BI ToolsSisenseBusiness Benefits With Sisense
ArchitectureAll-in-one: ETL, analytical database, visualizationsAll-in-oneAgility and flexibility to adapt to changing business conditions
Supported DataComplexSimple and complexLower IT burden that does not need to support OLAP technology
Scalability (Tables/Data/Users)Optimized for up to 25+ tables/500 GB/1000s users per serverOptimized for up to 25+ tables/500 GB/1000s users per serverBroaden business user audience who can explore data without increasing IT resources
Time to DeploymentMonths/yearsDays/weeksFaster ROI, instant insights to changing business conditions
Data Model DevelopmentOLAP technologyData mashup — ETL; create relationships among unaggregated data within many tables that are combined at time of query
Direct query of data warehouse
Custom views (SQL)
Increased agility and speed to integrate and explore data, lower IT maintenance and dependency on new reporting requests, IT has more time for value-driven activities
Extensibility & EmbeddabilityVaries by vendor: API, SDK, JavaScript, iFrameAPI, SDK, JavaScript, iFrame, JS libraries, RESTFaster time to revenue, stronger value proposition in ease of use
Data Preparation ResponsibilityIT/DBAMin. SQL experience/analystLower operational costs, lower IT burden
Solution Deployment: ServerVaries by vendor:
on-premises, managed service
Private or public cloud, on-premises, managed serviceFlexible deployment, extended value of infrastructure investments
Solution Deployment: Reporting & AnalysisVaries by vendor: desktop or web-basedWeb-basedFlexible deployment, increased user adoption due to more accessibility
Reporting & Analysis MaintenanceHighLowLower cost, lower IT burden
AI and Machine Learning (ML)No AI or ML available, requires separate product or platformAI throughout with patent-pending technology that automatically highlights insights, built-in predictive analytics, deeper data exploration, and moreInfuse AI and ML into analytics, dashboards, and reports for a deeper exploratory environment and more ways to engage with data, leading to faster time to insight, action, and impact, and predictive analytics capabilities

Why Sisense

Sisense goes beyond business intelligence by providing organizations with the ability to infuse analytics everywhere, at any time: in both business workflows and new analytics products. Our radical innovation redefines every aspect of business analytics to make it easy for you to discover business insights from complex data — any data sources, any size. You will get up and running rapidly, so you can discover answers on the fly and deliver ROI in just weeks or months.

Our dedicated Customer Success Team will be with you at each stage of your Bl journey — from onboarding to launch and expansion — helping you develop a data-driven culture.

Sisense’s end-to-end, agile Bl platform is built to help you make smarter, faster data-driven decisions:

AI-powered analytics continuumEnd-to-end governanceHighly extensibleCloud flexible
Unlock insights with code-free, AI-driven, or code-driven analytics.
AI-powered throughout to augment data prep, minimize human errors, and deliver insights automatically. 
Scale across all skill levels and use cases for an integrated analytics experience in ONE platform.
Keep your organization secure with fine-grained control across all interfaces and users through multi-level security, extensive governance, and performance monitoring.Highly extensible with best-in-class embedding and a fully customizable analytics platform via 450+ APIs, embed SDK and JS libraries that integrate analytics into internal business applications and customer-facing productsCloud flexibility lets you scale on demand with cloud, on-premises, and hybrid architecture. Deep partnerships with AWS, Snowflake, Azure, and Google as well as our own managed cloud service.

With our innovation and ease-of-use, we have gained recognition from peers and market analysts:

Our customers talk about Sisense as a game-changer

From innovative startups to Fortune 500 enterprises, thousands of customers worldwide leverage the power of Sisense to get the insights they need.

“We say ‘Sisense it’ now, when someone wants the answer to a question.”

– Brent Allen, Director of Infrastructure and WebOps

“When I could go from concept to being in production with over 100 users in just 75 days, that was just something unheard of! That was probably my biggest excitement over the whole project.”

– Malinda Jepsen, Business Intelligence Specialist

“The biggest win [with Sisense] is really allowing our clients to have a new way of interacting with data that they’re very familiar with.”

– James Tickner, Head of Data Analytics for Corporate Solutions

“The teams at Luma Health were able to use data from Sisense to analyze, recognize, and address the unpredictable swings in patient behavior that COVID-19 produced, harnessing insights to create a surge of innovation for good.”

– Aditya Bansod, Co-Founder and CTO
Luma Health Logo

“It’s all about what you do with the data you collect. Unless you have a clear method of slicing and dicing that data, and presenting it to users, it’s not really useful. With a tool like Sisense, it changes the game altogether.”

– Shaul Shalev, Safety Analytics & Innovation Manager
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