Our Blog

6 Quick Fixes for Reporting using Pentaho

22 May 2017 – Posted by Manikandan Anbalagan

GrayMatter‘s experts address customers’ Pentaho Reporting related needs and challenges on a daily basis. Starting from data integration using Pentaho Data Integration to dashboarding using dashboard designer, reporting using report designer, best-in-class custom components, we have done it all for 200+ projects around the globe.

Tagged : 2017

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Principles of Analytical Dashboard
Design

31 Jan 2017 – Posted by Vikas Gupta

Appropriate Dashboard Design is critical to the effectiveness of business insights offered to the audience. BI consumers, especially key executives need dashboards that convey the root cause of any occurrence or trend, at a glance.

GrayMatter’s UI strategy is based on the 4 Ws principle of What, Why, When and Where to enable the user to have the complete picture on any particular analysis. The dashboards are designed in such a manner that lead the user from one question to the next and by the end of the navigation the user has comprehensive information on the subject. The purpose is to enable the user to understand what the opportunity or issue is, where and when is the trend observed and why it is happening. Such thorough analysis leads to follow-up action to leverage the opportunity or address the root cause of the issue.

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Car Park Revenue Optimization – How it is different from hotel revenue optimization

01 Nov 2016 – Posted by Vikas Gupta

Hello Again! Hope you are enjoying reading the GrayMatter blogs! In this blog I will jot down my thoughts on comparison of key drivers that determine car park revenue optimization vis-à-vis those that determine hotel revenue optimization. Why did I think about this?! Good question! Well recently we started working on a revenue analytics project for a car park. I was of the opinion that there would be a strong similarity between bookings and occupancy utilization at hotels compared to car parks; however as we started to get in details of car park business, I realized we were wrong with our assumption. Car Park business is quite different than hotel business, even though they might sound similar conceptually.

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Utilize Manufacturing Analytics
to steer businesses ahead!

13 Oct 2016 – Posted by Sandeep Bhatt

In most of the Manufacturing industries data bank is large, complex, and often fast-moving, and so it becomes difficult to process using traditional database analysis and management tools. The sources of data include CAD models, sensors, instruments, internet transactions, simulations—potentially, records of all the digital sources of information in the enterprise. These set of information are basically large sets of heterogeneous information which require an efficient and dynamic tool/ technology to process the relevant information.

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Balancing triangle of Productivity
Profitability and Quality of Service
with real time analytics

21 Sep 2016 – Posted by Vikas Gupta

They say that you can’t have your cake and eat it too! Well that holds good for most things around us. Take for instance, productivity, profitability and service quality in any resource intensive business. Wouldn’t it truly be a magic triangle if an optimal balance were to be achieved on all three parameters?!

In this context, I recall a recent experience with a large ground handler providing services to Airlines. Ground handling is a very people and high value machines intensive business.To add to the complexity, only specific skilled people can operate specific machines and operations run almost 18 hours per day. Every time flight get delayed, whether inbound or outbound, it has a severe impact on the ground handler’s profitability and quality of services. Contracts are hard bound with services level assurance (SLA) and any breach leads to financial losses. So it becomes very critical to balance the magic triangle.

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anupam dasgupta

Listen to your Airport Passengers
– are they happy?

04 Feb 2016 – Posted by Anupam Dasgupta

Some food for thought. Surveys are a key channel to gauge customer satisfaction in any business and airports are certainly not an exception. Collection of surveys data and its analysis is increasingly becoming a key need for airports. As per a recent report (Airport IT Trends Report, SITA) 89% of all airports will use Business Intelligence (BI) to conduct service quality data analysis by 2017. Some of the key airport surveys include the ACI ASQ Survey, Skytrax and others.

Automated survey data collection brings in the boon of saved efforts that could be expended in doing manual data consolidation. It is not just a question of efforts but also about getting the insights fast so that the trends are recent and relevant. Once the data collection is done, the complexity involved in analyses needs to be tackled e.g., large data volumes, difficult to compute KPIs, different types of surveys and so on. This is where a pre-built airport analytics solution like GrayMatter’s AA+ brings in tremendous value through its survey analytics module.

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Pawan

Optimize your data archival strategy:
Adopt Near-Line Storage

22 Dec 2015 – Posted by Pavan Mulpur

Near Line Storage (NLS) is a concept that describes intermediate type of data storage that represents a compromise between online and offline storage used for data archiving which is rarely used to access. The near line data is stored in compressed form with fewer backups and offers reduction in costs for the data that is accessed less frequently. Let us take a situation of a client with 50 terabytes of data in their entire data warehouse. Say client identifies that 25 terabytes of their entire data is historical and that they do not need to access this data on a daily basis. So instead of storing 25 terabytes of data on their regular database which occupies a huge amount of database space, if they can compress this data its storage space will also come down thus bringing down the cost of storage.

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Improved Airline Marketing using
Airport Analytics

20 Dec 2015 – Posted by Krishnamurthy S K

Airport operators handle a tough business! One would say that all businesses are complex, why just airports?! Well yes, and NO! Let me illustrate.

Airports have to allure passengers, but that’s just one part of the story. Modern times have brought in an evolved business landscape and airports can no longer expect airlines to knock on their doors requesting their permissions to commence their flight operation. Airports have to attract more airlines to operate from their airports, to step up the number of flights of already operating airlines and to add more destinations to the existing network at their airports

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Custom Component Development using Design Studio SDK

06 Aug 2015 – Posted by Abhishek Srivastava

Executives’ demand for compelling visualization, intuitive analyses and engaging insights with a seamless user experience necessitates the need for BI custom add-ons or custom components. GrayMatter’s SAP Design Studio custom components address various BI needs like KPI indicators, metrics comparison, collaboration, rich visualization, enhanced slice & dice capability , superior UI features and so on.

What is the Design Studio SDK?

The Design Studio SDK is a Software Development Kit that allows developers to develop third party components, known as SDK extensions.

 

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What is the need for airport analytics?

17 Jul 2015 – Posted by Mikko Sjöberg

Airports business has assumed gigantic dimensions over the last couple of decades or so. Changes in legislation and investment policies allowed private ownership in airports and consequent enterpreneurial spirit and drive. At the same time technology took giant strides to be able to meet the business needs of airports.

Talking of business needs of airports, increasing passenger volumes is a fundamental trend. Airports need to adjust their operations to accomodate higher passenger numbers, increased air traffic and commercial services. This burgeoning demand at airports means need for growth in infrastructure, staffing while ensuring productivity and service quality levels. And of course all this with an eye on the bottomline!

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Why did Chelsea win EPL 2014-15?!

24 Jun 2015 – Posted by Sateesh Jonnalagadda

How many times have you stared at the television screen, rooting for your favorite club to top the charts in the coveted English Premier League?! How often would you have cursed the goalkeeper for misjudging the trajectory? Or maybe fretted over the lack of form of the most prized defenders, or forwards for that matter. I am sure a lot of “what-if” or “only-if” runs through your mind after every single match. Now then, SAP Lumira can be used to demystify the conjecture around such possibilities.

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Enhance your Airport Car Parking Revenues using Airport Analytics!

18 Jun 2015 – Posted by Jarno Nousiainen

Being the Head – Commercial of a leading global airport, John has a keen sense of the pulse of non-aeronautical revenues. He is always on the hunt for smarter ways of increasing business and achieving or in fact exceeding the planned numbers! One of his favorite topics of discussion revolves around research to determine smarter ways of increasing non-aero revenues. No wonder then that he had instructed his team of managers that bright, young trainees be given opportunities to research on similar topics and come up with substantial findings. Presently John browsed through a write-up put together by a trainee. 

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Boost non-aero revenues through smart advertising

09 Jun 2015 – Posted by Muhaimin Saidu

A focus on non-aeronautical operations and revenue growth is crucial for airports today. Developing this area of airport operations has become even more important during economically challenging times. Although airport revenues are a function of number of passengers there are some areas of an airport’s non-aeronautical operations that can still generate a high percentage of earnings, despite a decline in traffic figures. Airports know that they can’t increase fees for Airlines, and thus they need to find innovative ways of increasing non–aeronautical revenues. The future of Airports is to build Airport cities cum malls, where not only passengers, but the whole city the Airports serve can come for an outing into the malls, cinemas and entertainment areas.

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Turbo Charge your SAP Design Studio Applications!

29 May 2015 – Posted by Sateesh Jonnalagadda

Executives want to gauge their business through well-organized metrics and KPI’s to make timely, clear and consistent decisions. Key decision makers expect to view their dashboards depicting real-time data with minimal loading time, irrespective of type of device. In this blog I want to discuss how to design SAP Design Studio Applications (containing Pagebook or Tablets) to reduce load time and improve performance.  

 

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R You Ready for R?

25 Feb 2015 – Posted by Tarun

With terabytes of data at hand, every business is trying to figure out the best way to understand information about their customers and themselves. As the volumes of data continually grow, organizations of various domains around the world like financial, manufacturing, health care, retail, research – need powerful analytical models to make data-driven decisions.

In the year 1996, R came into existence at the University of Auckland in New Zealand by statistics professors Ross Ihaka and Robert Gentleman and the code was a free software package. R is open source program. Most companies increasingly rely on the open-source MySQL database to store their critical information.

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Motor Insurance Pricing strategy using Advance Analytics

28 Jan 2015 – Posted by Naushad Khan

Today insurance companies are attempting to improve the bottom-line by containing cost which has very limited scope. While continuing driving the cost insurer must focus on innovative product pricing which is more market driven than the regulator. Some of the product segments are highly price sensitive, especially motor segment; profits are eroding and it has become practically unsustainable business if not for the size. However, with the ‘internet of everything’ and ‘social media’, insurance players can look at innovative pricing strategies and products if they adopt analytics. For example, there are multiple sensors and GPS devices that are fixed to vehicles today that gives much information related to vehicle performance, speed, braking and accelerometer information on acceleration.

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Decoding the Fundamentals Of Dashboard Design (FODD)

16 Jan 2015 – Posted by Ankit Patni

Ankit Patni, Our UI/UX Expert looks at every dashboard / Design with “Good, Bad and Ugly” perspective only. In his blog he explains about fundamental requirements in any given dashboard.  He says “Good Dashboard design is important to increase user adaptation and also to prioritize the way information is being presented to the users. But the real challenge for a Designer, comes when one has to create a concoction of design with Fundamentals Of Design (FOD), Business and Technology, in a way that the simplicity of design is never lost and the motive of design is supplied in a way that user needs not to spend much effort in understanding the design rather, they can focus on Business.”

Tagged : -

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Clustering Pentaho BA Server 5.0.x version

14 Nov 2014 – Posted by Gangadhara Boranna

Clustering means that 2 or more instances of Pentaho share a common repository. Pentaho 5.0.X now uses the Jackrabbit Content Repository (JCR) for the BA Repository. Pentaho stores content about reports that you create, examples we provide, report scheduling data, and audit data in the BA Repository. The BA Repository resides on the database that you installed. The BA Repository consists of three repositories: Jackrabbit, Quartz, and Hibernate.

– Jackrabbit contains the solution repository, examples, security data, and content data from reports that you use Pentaho software to create.

– Quartz holds data that is related to scheduling reports and jobs.

– Hibernate holds data that is related to audit logging.

Tagged : Pentaho

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PDI best practices – Why avoid insert/update step

25 Sep 2014 – Posted by Sandeep

When we are looking at a transformation designed to use insert/update step to perform the data load on the target table. PDI step Insert/Update technically works as below

Let us take an example of loading a target table. Assume that there is a daily load of 100k records into a target table with 10million records and every incoming row from the source table looks up against all the 10 million records in the target table. This process continues for all the 100k input records.

Insert/Update step involves multiple round trips to the database depending on the commit size.

Performance of most steps depends heavily upon the number of round trips, speed of round trip which is a combination of speed of network, the latency on the network and the performance of database. 

Find below the wiki link to explain the Insert/Update step

 http://wiki.pentaho.com/display/EAI/Insert+-+Update

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Competitive Advantage for an ANALYTICS Company

25 Sep 2014 – Posted by Anant Narayan

What are the key elements an analytics company must possess to be differentiated competitively, in the market? Needless to say, they need to be able to cater to end-to-end analytics. Be it simple reporting or intuitive analytics, through interactive dashboards or all sorts of analysis of OLAP nature i.e. pivoting, drill-downs, drill-through, drill-ups, slice-and-dice analysis and so on. These are just the elementary items of analytics, in the current times. More important for any analytics organization is the ability to integrate data from various sources into a common repository (otherwise called as Data Warehouse), for analytical purposes. Thus, Data Warehousing forms an integral part of the Analytics capability, for any organization in this business; besides the ability to handle and work with any kind of databases, including columnar, graph, NoSQL etc. databases. Further, role-based data access for dashboards / reports / analytics is a fundamental capability any global customer would be looking for as a differentiator.

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6 Key features which can be reasons to Migrate to Pentaho 5.0

10 Jul 2014 – Posted by Gangadhara Boranna

We strongly encourage you to move to Pentaho’s latest environment that provides advanced Pentaho features. Listed below are 6 top reasons why Pentaho 5.0 could be your ideal solution.

1. Integrated Administration in PUC & Merge of enterprise console into Pentaho user console

This aspect gives a completely fresh look to the user console. The 5.0 version has improvised navigation through perspectives and home page with integrated administration. The user console also simplifies the permission control mechanism using ‘Manage Control’ interface.

2. New Scheduler Interface & Rest API interface for OEM integration

The new simplified scheduling on Pentaho emphasizes on the power and ease-of-use for end users. It gives the user, the ability to specify output location, full parameter support, extracting the reports optionally via Email and also provides the scheduled block times.

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Need customized performance tuning of Pentaho dashboards? Know How

20 Jun 2014 – Posted by Gangadhara Boranna

There are several Performance tuning methodologies in Pentaho. However, Dashboards are a combination of individual components such as reporting and analyser. Any performance tuning would need to impact all such components. Two such areas are
1) Size of Data to be transferred from server to client environment (To optimize network bandwidth)
2) Rendering of Static content such as images etc.There are several Performance tuning methodologies in Pentaho. However, Dashboards are a combination of individual components such as reporting and analyser.
 

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BI also as a Decision Measurement System (DMS) – Part 2

20 May 2014 – Posted by Anant Narayan

This is in continuation of the previous blog on “BI also as a Decision Measurement System (DMS)”. We saw in the previous blog that BI as a decision measurement system is something the CXOs would like to see. As a DMS, I would like to see how a particular decision / action has contributed to changed performance of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). I would, thus, like to see pre and post decision date, the various KPIs. Likewise, I may have made multiple decisions in a year and I might want to see the KPIs before and after each decision.

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Crosstabs De-mystified in
Pentaho Reporting

29 Apr 2014 – Posted by Gangadhara Boranna

Crosstabs have been on the horizon for several years now. They lived a happy, undisturbed life along with the unicorns and gnomes guarding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Crosstabs are an easy and relatively easy way to visualize tabular data along two or more axis. They are an indispensable part of a modern report engine.

Tagged : Crosstabs

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Pentaho and Big Data

21 Apr 2014 – Posted by Suresh Narayanappa

Pentaho provides open source reporting, data mining, and analysis, workflow and dashboard capabilities. The company’s CEO, Quentin Gallivant, made a few predictions relating to Big Data for 2014. In my next blog sometime in May am going to share a unique use case for a Big Data implementation.

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Predictive Analytics and its rapidly increasing Importance

11 Mar 2014 – Posted by Rajeev Arora

Predictive Analytics is having a massive impact on all the aspects of business globally. For example, Google is tweaking its Google Analytics platform and also a significant number of algorithms and search guidelines. This will definitely have a huge impact on the functions of all content creators this year. The current value of Predictive Analytics and its potential for the future is a subject of excitement and discussion within the IT industry.

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Open Source BI Expert

Introducing – FINANCE ANALYTICS Re-defined, FA+ 3.0 on SAP

04 Mar 2014 – Posted by Lokesh Narasimha

Nearing the launch date of the Finance Analytics FA+ 3.0 on SAP platform on 7th March 2014, it seemed like the right thing to do to give a quick pre-view of what FA+ 3.0 on SAP is all about. Also an insight into why we decided on Finance Analytics. While our solution engineering team gives the final touches to the much awaited global solution, it is heartening to see the response from our existing and some prospect customers who have seen the power of FA+ 3.0 on SAP in last week’s preview session. It only re-affirms our belief that we are on the right track.

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Trends in Analytics that will make a difference

21 Feb 2014 – Posted by Stanny J D

The analytics industry is going through a number of changes recently and rapid transformation is inevitable. This is driven by the never-ending quest for higher revenues, improved customer service and rationalization of costs. Analytics is also the flavor of the decade across industries and those who have got the long-term BI & data management strategy right will stay ahead.

Tagged : BI market

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Airport Analytics (AA+) – A game changer
for International Airports

14 Feb 2014 – Posted by Krishnamurthy S K

GrayMatter Software Services (Pvt.) Ltd, Bangalore has developed and rapidly enhanced the Airport Analytics solution (AA+) incorporating the relevant KPIs in respect of different areas of airport functions like Operations, Commercial, Finance and Infrastructure maintenance. AA+ has been implemented for the GMR airports some time back. The SAP software that GMR has been using is SAP ECC 6.0, BI 7.3 and BO 4.0 SP4. The AA+ solution has been developed on BO and uses all of these underlying SAP modules as well. Airport Analytics AA+ solution is a comprehensive ‘one of its kind’ Airport BI solution in the world considering varied and complex Airport Operator’s business model globally. The analytics solution is enterprise wide and gives insights into every inch of the Airport Operators business with its unique cross-linking capabilities.

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Gartner’s Rules for Leveraging Big Data

07 Feb 2014 – Posted by Suresh Narayanappa

Before you can leverage big data, you must guard against making these two leadership failures. That’s the valuable advice coming from Gartner Inc. The technology research consultancy says that big data strategy failures stem from two mistakes committed by an organization’s leadership. One is not understanding the business benefits of collating and mining data sets, and second, underestimating business and IT changes that can help realize big data goals.

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Vertical (Industry) Specific BI Products

29 Jan 2014 – Posted by Vikas Gupta

I strongly believe that vertical specific BI products is the future of business intelligence in the software development industry. As we experienced in the ERP space, when ERP started to emerge in the market in early 90’s. The ERP software used to be a horizontal platform like SAP R3 and these platforms were deployed on specific industry vertical with 1-2 years of deployment cycle with a large team of functional consultants along with technology experts. Today most ERP systems are closely aligned to verticals and have captured all business nuances specific to industry.

Tagged : BI products

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Big Data Stack Could Emerge in 2014

23 Jan 2014 – Posted by Suresh Narayanappa

A big data equivalent of LAMP stack could emerge in 2014, according to Richard Daley, chief strategy officer of Pentaho, the specialist company dealing in business intelligence. He is of the belief that a stack may be built as consensus will develop around a few big data architectures. The stack’s upper layers may contain more number of proprietary elements when compared to LAMP.

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Predictive Analysis in the Insurance Industry

15 Jan 2014 – Posted by Naushad Khan

The application of predictive analytics to the core insurance functions of marketing, underwriting and claims can provide meaningful benefits to insurers. The greater availability of data, technological advances, and pressure to maintain competitive advantage has seen insurers leverage predictive analytics to make informed decisions. Read Full Blog

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Out-of-box Insurance Analytics IA+

08 Jan 2014 – Posted by Hemashree Sateesh

IA+ is out-of-box “Management Reporting solution” which covers complete spectrum of insurance business such as Sales & distribution, Marketing, Claims, Operation, Underwriting, Finance, Re-insurance and Actuarial. IA+ offers vast repository of KPI’s and metrics for various roles and responsibilities – running into several hundreds. The solution come with pre-built dashboard and management reports for all department heads. This role-based analytics application is designed to help middle and senior management of Insurance companies across departments to take corrective actions, decisions based on trends and evaluate performance periodically.

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BI also as a Decision Measurement System (DMS)

07 Jan 2014 – Posted by Anant Narayan

When we say Business Intelligence (BI) or Analytics, normally, we mean presenting facts or data in a very meaningful, simple, visual / tabular representation. BI is usually intended to provide various types of insights; including trends, comparisons, growths / declines, analysis by various dimensional variables, geographical representations of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) etc.; into a vast ocean of data. Then there is what-if analysis, predictive analytics and more advanced statistical analytics or BI areas. All of these are intended to be a Decision Support System (DSS). BI / analytics is generally viewed as a set of tools or an application, including but not limited to, interactive analysis; aimed at assisting in better and informed decision making.

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Pentaho Launches Community Edition 5.0

31 Dec 2013 – Posted by Suresh Narayanappa

Pentaho Corporation recently announced the immediate availability of its Open Source Pentaho Community Edition 5.0. It is the latest version of business analytics and open source data integration platform. The launch event also included the Pentaho Marketplace, where members of the community can download and explore all available plug ins developed by the Pentaho Community. It has extended the capabilities of the open source platform and permits community members to work together, share feedback and submit or create new plug ins to broaden Pentaho functionality.

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Open Source BI Expert

Open Source BI (Business Intelligence) Adoption-Fact v/s Myth

12 Dec 2013 – Posted by Lokesh Narasimha

While Open Source Business Intelligence (OSBI) has been around since 2005, it has evolved rapidly over these years and has nearly comparable features with the Best commercial BI products today. There is a learning curve, as with any other software, to be able to successfully implement a BI solution. While there is a vibrant online community of users as observed on the number of registered users globally, the numbers of right trained resources that can be engaged on short notice are relatively fewer when compared to other commercial tools. Having said that, there is a growing pool of resources and considering the significant cost savings on license fees, the same is being invested by companies to avail required training for their internal teams.

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Market Trends In Business Intelligence – 2014 And Beyond

01 Dec 2013 – Posted by Vikas Gupta

This blog is dedicated to all my friends and associates at GrayMatter who have been part of our long journey earlier and continue to tread the path of collaborative innovation leading to best-in-class analytics solution for global adoption. The BI and Analytics industry has suddenly burst into the mainstream today with large and medium scale organizations trying to derive business value from it. This business value is synonymous with driving higher revenues, reducing costs, improving compliance and enhanced customer satisfaction.

Tagged : BI tools

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