By Mack Coulibaly, CEO, Jighi, Inc.

I am not sure if anyone really needs another market trend prediction but here I am. Since this is my business, I cannot help but to forecast where the technology we build is heading. From what I see, hear, and experience, I am confident that the following 5 trends will continue to solidify over the coming years.

1. SaaS BI usage will grow faster than traditional on-premise BI applicationsBusiness Intelligence (BI) and more specifically Software as a Service (SaaS) BI is experiencing an unprecedented growth. Industry-watchers expect the trend to grow steadily in the coming years. As businesses become more comfortable with the SaaS model and as they seek to lower capital expenditures while improving effective decision-making process, the on-premise BI tools will have to contend with their emerging SaaS sister applications.

 2. Managers and Self-employed business people will be the fastest growing segment of the SaaS BI users It is expected that managers and mobile business users seeking to accelerate informed decision-making will take it upon themselves to sign up for SaaS BI tools. This new category of users is expected to be the fastest growing segment of the overall SaaS BI users. Managers, leaders and self employed business people seeking to become more independent will empower themselves with SaaS BI tools even if those tools are not provided by the enterprise. Companies like ours (Jighi athttp://staging.jighi.com) allows individual managers to upload excel, link to corporate database using the user’s credentials, to build reports and analytics on the fly. The simplicity and the collaborative nature of these tools, in combination with their affordable price make them a no-brainer addition to any manager’s toolbox.

 

3. Analysis or Reports without Benchmark will not be credible As SaaS BI provide the ability to unify company data from behind the firewall with company data distributed in other SaaS applications to provide end-to-end business visibility and reporting, leaders will refuse to admit as evidence any report built from a single data source. A non mash-up report or a report without normalization benchmark will have less credibility.

 4. The Definition of “Send me” a report will change Collaboration technology as shown by the adoption of social media has changed the definition of “Send me a report or send me an analysis”. Jighi along with most emerging SaaS BI tool heavily leverages collaborative technologies. “Embed”, “share”, and “publish” are out-clipping the word “Send me”. A SaaS analysis or report can be securely embedded for the viewing of only the intended audience. Moreover, with embed, the data is updated dynamically and in real-time so that the decision maker is not making decision based on past information.

5. Price will drop, barrier to entry will be lowered and ease of use will be the difference between winners and loosers The more SaaS BI tools come to market, the fierce the competition and the lower price will go. Traditional measures of application performance will matter less. It is my belief that ease-of-use will be the biggest differentiator. The individual user or the manager who needs information to make a decision can care less if you are running the most sophisticated ETL, OLAP and or some very advanced technology. What matters most is how fast and how easy it is to get intelligent insights out of the tool.

____ Mack Coulibaly is the former Director of Smart Services Technology at Cisco Systems, Inc.  He is now CEO of Jighi, Inc., an innovative SaaS BI platform company based in Santa Clara, CA. http://staging.jighi.com

Tue, 03/29/2011 – 17:00