BI for all
May 14, 2020

BI for all

Dimitri Strutt | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Sigma Computing

Our system's usage is captured in Snowflake. Sigma was perfectly tailored to access Snowflake and quickly allow us to build internal dashboards to monitor the usage, track the efficiency of our changes and produce reports easily and automatically communicated to our clients without any ETL/publish phase. The Excel-like UI is particularly convenient and the ability to embed public dashboards (with constantly refreshed data) without a complex licensing model is extremely valuable. We are now exploring other recently released functionalities and taking full advantage of the ability to work with semi-structured data.
We have also been working with clients willing to build their own dashboards and advising some to use it (though we'd deal with the proof-of-concept) to analyze data we don't own and potentially link it to ours.
  • Excel-like UI
  • Semi-structured data
  • Secured embedded dashboards
  • Data constantly refreshed (no need to publish)
  • Limited choice of visualization types
  • Limited customization of visuals (font in tabular charts)
  • Some functions behaving rather crudely (ranking)
  • Ability to respond to prospect/clients data queries beyond what our UI provides.
  • Ability to monitor the cost of our Snowflake usage.
For connections with Snowflake, we have been using SQL as the data source is relatively complex, and using SQL is no issue. But for a case where data has been imported from CSV it was crucial that the datasets could easily be refreshed. We have not as of yet had to link tables from non-SQL sources.
In addition to our own in-built reports, we have used Sigma to embed graphs within dashboard pages. The ability to pass parameters was essential in order to avoid the multiplication of worksheets and the pages are to be accessible on any device. So we have been able to propose embedded dashboards showing sales performance or system usage to targeted audiences.
We have only been with Sigma for a few months and are still assessing to what extent it is to be used internally. We are looking at using Teams to allows clients to access dashboards and have set some authors to have the ability to create dashboards themselves. We'd control the data source and partners or clients would exploit the data themselves. We're still thinking about our offer to our client base and how to best use the Snowflake data sharing option with Sigma.
We store our reporting data in Snowflake, and few non-technical people can use the console and SQL to query that data (and then export/manipulate). Sigma has allowed non-technical users to use volumes of data that were impractical in Excel.
Most other tools require a desktop instance to "develop," load data, and then publish. These desktop interfaces are usually meant for data analysts or at least specialists. They are mostly designed to companies with a dedicated (large) budget and personnel tasked uniquely with analytics. Sigma allows for significant deliverables being produced by multi-role staff without a rather unmanageable upfront cost. Most classic BI tools are also extremely costly when the outputs (with constant up-to-date data) are to be made accessible to a large audience, thus requiring some form of SSO
Suited to users with little BI but extensive Excel experience. It is best suited within companies that cannot afford the Tableau-like licensing model and don't have the need for large teams of report-builders but have a large audience for report-consumers.
The limited list of data sources and the fact that CRMs such as Salesforce are not accessible is a shame.

Sigma Feature Ratings

Pre-built visualization formats (heatmaps, scatter plots etc.)
Location Analytics / Geographic Visualization
Customizable dashboards
Report Formatting Templates
Pixel Perfect reports
Drill-down analysis
Formatting capabilities
Report sharing and collaboration
Publish to Web
Publish to PDF
Report Versioning
Report Delivery Scheduling

Sigma Support

The documentation is somewhat succinct and could do with more examples. However, support's response to questions has been perfect, with rapid replies and the availability to discuss matters on calls and help with initial setups.
There has also been a keen interest from support to learn about how the clients were using the tool.

Using Sigma

Very easy to use for anyone familiar with Excel, which is probably partly due to the limitations of the tool in that the user is not overwhelmed by "unnecessary" functionalities. Data can be processed using standard functions in columns and the levels are an intuitive way of replicating the grouping/sub-totaling in Excel. It is essentially "fit for purpose" for most requirements.