Looking forward to 2020, there are five things I think we’ll see happen more.
1. More consolidations
We’ve seen a ton of consolidation this year and we’ll see more next year. There are about 75 front-end vendors in the BI space and the reality is that they can’t all survive in the market as it is today. Salesforce purchased Tableau recently and a lot of smaller vendors have already been bought.
If smaller vendors aren’t purchased by mega-vendors, they’ll become part of roll-up strategies by private equity firms. This is where they buy small vendors and roll them up into something valuable around specific domains, whether it be financial services or health, for example. This means eventually we’ll have a handful of bigger vendors focused on a particular subject domain.
2. Packaged application
We’re going to see fewer organizations wanting to spend money on horizontal BI applications. Instead we’ll see more pre-packaged solutions that can be highly complex. Part of this is being driven by consulting firms who are trying to move away from selling services and into recurring revenue streams. They want to own a bigger piece of the analytics space and combine a variety of data sources and models with their deep knowledge about particular verticals. These packaged solutions will be seen more in the market, particularly at the top end of town.
3. Analytics that is not analytics
Analytic software that is not being sold as analytic software is on the rise. A good example of this is Gainsight. They’re a customer success management company but they're selling you a dashboard and have an integration partner who gets all your data and integrates it for you. So really they're selling customer success metrics. I believe more standalone vendors will come up that focus on niche areas and essentially sell you analytics under the guise of something else. These organizations are trying to cut through the complexity by delivering data-driven products under another name.
4. Swap outs of legacy BI
The end of life for SAP’s BusinessObjects is coming and Oracle BI is probably not too far behind. This means that 40,000 SAP BusinessObjects customers need to make a choice whether they go to SAP Analytics in the cloud or choose something else. This has triggered the modernization of legacy BI because organizations have to move to another platform creating opportunities for companies to sell into that space.
5. Actionable analytics
It will no longer be good enough to deliver a dashboard. You've got to be able to deliver a workflow around it as well so people can take the next step. So I believe we’ll see a rise in applications that can do this. More platforms will embed workflows into dashboards which means people can do more directly from their dashboard. They won’t just go there to look at a number, they’ll go there to take action whether that’s contacting customers or updating records. This will enable users to close the loop on decision making or take an action directly from their dashboard.
The BI industry has been undergoing significant change in recent years. In 2020, these five trends will see that change only accelerate.
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