Reviewed Edition: Business

About the Reviewer

User Review: "SiSENSE as web service platform."

10 of 0 - 10 | updated 8/22/2015

TrustRadius Review Summary

SiSense is great at mashing up data from multiple sources, easy to deploy, easy dashboard and report preparation, and low hardware usage. It is ideal for companies who are limited in money and time to deploy. A few areas for improvement include easier ETL tool configuration and the data context interface could be easier to use.

Overall Satisfaction with Sisense

From my point of view it is perfect tool for any company which just starts with its first BI solution and are limited with money. Also great for companies which do not want to have a time consuming project to deploy. It depends on how large your data sources are, but probably you wont need to invest in any new hardware.
I was using Sisense Prism as platform supporting our own www service. Our service provided a complex info about public contracts around Poland and we used Prism as BI platform to generate Dashboards. Those Dashboards were used by our costumers to analyze situation on public contracts market and support them in decision to start with a given contract. Overall I see Prism as a great tool, which requires not so much IT knowledge to operate and is not time consuming in terms of deployment and report or dashboard preparation. It is also very low on Hardware resources consumption.
  • Great at mashing up data from multiple different data sources.
  • Easy deployment, ETL process, Dashboard or Report preparation and distribution to end users.
  • Very low hardware usage so you probably wont need to invest huge money on new servers.
  • JS Extensions engine which allows to create really powerful tailored features.
  • Plug-ins in ETL tool are powerful, but configuration could be a little easier. Also JS extension in Prism Web is powerful but could be a little more clear how to use.
  • Need to catch up with several common features for BI platform.
Less resource consuming and faster deployment. Also very extensive embeding capabilities, that make it a perfect tool for OEM customers.
The main factor is flexibility of Sisense and that is enhanced pretty often. Also extension engine allows to produce a lot of powerful features perfect for given use of Sisense.
Sisense is used as OEM solution which prepares a data, and then disaplys it in embeded dashboard in current web based system. It is mostly used by non-technical users, mainly from mobile devices and outside of company's network. Dashboards are also embedded the way that end users do not need to log in and can use them by single click.
Since Sisense is using its' own data engine it does not have the usual issue tied to merging multiple data sources. It has many built in connectors including NO SQL data sources. Mashing-up data is very easy and it is easy to connect MS SQL with Mongo for examples which is very powerful. ETL contains almost everything you can expect from it.
Reports/Dashboards are easy to share. It is done through native server with quite easy configuration. 
  • We're able to finish our web service which we could not with our previous BI vendor.
  • We could use our own product in a matter of 2-3 months after deployment which was quick.

BI Standard Reporting

Customizable dashboards

Ad-hoc Reporting

Drill-down analysis
Formatting capabilities
Report sharing and collaboration

Report Output and Scheduling

Publish to Web
Publish to PDF
Report Versioning
Report Delivery Scheduling

Data Discovery and Visualization

Pre-built visualization formats (heatmaps, scatter plots etc.)
Location Analytics / Geographic Visualization

Access Control and Security

Multi-User Support (named login)
Role-Based Security Model
Multiple Access Permission Levels (Create, Read, Delete)

Mobile Capabilities

Responsive Design for Web Access
Dashboard / Report / Visualization Interactivity on Mobile

Using Sisense

4 - They are creating Dashboards and support our customers.
3 - One need basic knowledge on BI as general, some SQL knowledge, an analytical mind, ability to know how use script languages (it is not required but it is useful to have a general knowledge how scripting works; it helps a lot at some point). One also should have a basic taste for composing a color palette and Dashboard layout planning.

  • Final Dashboards used as IFrame on our web service.
  • Ability to mash-up multiple different data sources
  • Speed - even with lot of text to analyze.
Mainly as a platform integrated with our web service that allows an innovative approach to analyzing public contracts market.

Evaluating Sisense and Competitors

Yes - We replaced InForum BI solution for following reasons:
- Support for WWW was weak
- Slow
- Mashing up different data sources was near impossible
  • Price
  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
Product Features - mash up from different data sources and support for WWW were most important factors.
I would definitely be more thorough in terms of evaluating a specific features required for our own product.

Sisense Implementation

Quick and simple. If we had run into some issues they were solved pretty quickly.
Change management was a big part of the implementation and was well-handled - Always use a separate environment to test new release. Always make a back up of each ElastiCube before each upgrade.
Some issues with IIS, when implementing earlier versions of Prism Web.

Sisense Training

  • Online training
  • In-person training
  • Self-taught
Easy and free training that allowed us quickly understand basics in Sisense and start using them. More advanced features requires some browsing through Sisense forums, but there is always support to help, and Sisense support is one of the best whith which I worked so far.
Many examples, videos and scenarios which you try on your own right away. This combined with in-person training gives you enough to utilize most of Sisense's power.
It is quite easy to learn on your own, but before doing so you need to identify your needs and if some of those needs are not met easily, conntact suport to learn more about it. 

Configuring Sisense

There maybe some features missing but overall configuration is flexible and quite powerful. Plus there is rebranding which is quite unique
Do not use IIS Express if you're going to use mobile platform since it has some issues. Other then that installation and configuration is easy and standard settings fir most cases.
Some - we have done small customizations to the interface - We needed to embed the solution as well as align coloring scheme to web page it was embedded in. All in all it was not that challening, although documentation for that requires some upgrades still.
Yes - we have added extensive custom code - Based on already available solutions it was quite easy. Tweaking and modification of already existing pieces of code is a little bit challenging but not that complicated. Creating your own plugins is difficult mainly due to high technical requirements and small amount of hints how to begin.

Sisense Support

Support is very good. Quick response, timely delivered solutions and those are exactly what is required.
Quick Resolution
Good followup
Knowledgeable team
Problems get solved
Kept well informed
No escalation required
Immediate help available
Support understands my problem
Support cares about my success
Quick Initial Response
Yes - Yes, it was solved in timely fashion (usually in next release but sometimes I've receive a special hotfix for certain issues) and to my full satisfaction.
Since solution is only in English, fact that they allowed us to translate some parts of Web Interface to Polish was something exceptional.

Using Sisense

Excellent, easy to use, end2end solution. It requires almost no it knowledge and is ready from day one to be used by end users.
Like to use
Relatively simple
Easy to use
Technical support not required
Well integrated
Quick to learn
Feel confident using
  • ETL
  • Dashboard preparation
  • Dashboard distribution
  • Plugins in EC Manager.
  • Context

Sisense Reliability

Product is quite easily scalable. The whole installation can be easily moved to stronger machine if needed.
There are very few situations when there is unexpected downtime. Mostly during development, new dashboard implementation and during upgrades. other then that there were very few crashes.
Sisense is usually performing better then other solutions even if going for complex reports/dashboards(of course within reasonable frames). I haven't noticed any bad influence on other systems, usually if something happens it stays within Sisense.

Integrating Sisense

Internal web application
Embeding dashboards in web application + merging user rights from Sisense with web application current users. There were some hurdles mostly due to the holes in documentation for such cases.
  • File import/export
  • Single Signon
  • API (e.g. SOAP or REST)
  • Javascript widgets
  • ETL tools

Relationship with Sisense

Quick responses and flexible approach allows to get to agreement quite quickly.
Support and Success team keep in touch since day one, they reach to you by themselves from time to time to check how things are going. Also they respond very quickly when contacting support team.
Mostly pricing and number of users, but also some additional features outside regular license.
Be prepraed in term of your needs to avoid dissapointment. 

Upgrading Sisense

Yes - Update is quick. It is recommended to back up before doing upgrade mostly due to behind the scenes changes that may affect system, mainly if Sisense is used as OEM embeded in another system. Unexpected impacts are very rare and usually quickly fixed with help of support team.
  • Hierarchies
  • New filtering system
  • Memory consumption enhancments
  • Improved iPad experience
  • Improved role configuration
  • Better documentation for extending Sisense.
Yes - Change is quick and painless and was done after finishing PoC and going for regular license.