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    Phocas vs. Sisense in BARC's The BI Survey

    Learn how Phocas compares to Sisense in the world's largest independent review of business intelligence products.

    There are a variety of trends that are critical to the successful implementation and adoption of business intelligence (BI) software. If you want your team to embrace your BI solution of choice, then evaluating your selection across relevant KPIs can improve how quickly data and analytics become part of your decision-making process.

    BARC’s The BI Survey 18 conducted by BARC Research invited more than 3,000 BI software users to evaluate their software across 30 KPIs, including business benefit, business value, project success, customer satisfaction, innovation and competitiveness. For the past several years, Phocas has continued to improve its ranking in the survey. In 2018, Phocas finished as the top-ranked software in 28 categories and as a leader in 25 categories.

    For this blog, we will compare Phocas’ performance with Sisense, a Tel Aviv-based software company that is recognized among the leaders in the BI industry.  We will consider two major trends in the industry, mobility and self-service, and then highlight how the two software solutions compare in overall product satisfaction.

    Mobile BI

    For this KPI, BI software users were asked to rate their BI solution based on how many of them use the software on their mobile device.  Mobile access to data is no longer an option. Whether your users are business executives, remote salespeople, or inventory and logistics managers, location should no longer be a factor. Analytics needs to be mobile so users can draw insight in real time wherever they are. While many BI software providers say they offer mobile BI, all solutions are not created equal.

    In 2018, users gave Phocas a score of 9.3 out of 10 while Sisense users gave their software a score of 4.1. For Phocas, mobility started from its origins by understanding hardware and software trends and the need to make BI available on whatever platform users need. Phocas offers the same functionality on mobile devices as it does on a desktop or laptop computer. BARC suggests, “Tablets offer the best view of Phocas visualizations, but standard smartphones still enable business users to keep a finger on the pulse of their organization.”

    Mobile is no longer the back-up device when it comes to BI.


    The ability to access and manipulate data in a BI solution regardless of skill level and training is an important trend as data has become important to everyone’s role. Driven by consumer technology, which has reduced steps, buttons and barriers for a variety of daily tasks, businesses are looking for more self-service options that allow their workers to quickly and easily solve challenges and improve performance. Among the solutions that are becoming more accessible to the masses is BI. A recent Phocas eGuide suggested: “User friendly and self-service are no longer an option when it comes to business intelligence. Simple is now a requirement that is shaping how we use data and technology, and perhaps more important, who.”

    In this KPI, which is based on how many sites currently use self-service features with their BI solution, Phocas scored a 9.7 while Sisense scored a 3.3, well below the vendor average. In fact, Sisense was second to last among its peers.

    BARC’s commentary on this KPI: “Phocas is built for the non-technical business user. Its analysis and visualization modes enable anyone to build, view and filter visualizations and dashboards, explore and drill down into data in a tabular format, and even set up security and access control. IT or advanced business users only need to play a limited role, primarily while implementing the platform and loading and transforming data.”

    Product and customer satisfaction

    What users score on mobile BI and self-service, in an era when these two features are in demand, can provide an indication of how they will also score their software on the product satisfaction and customer satisfaction KPIs. In BARC’s The BI Survey 18, the product satisfaction KPI was based on the frequency of problems encountered with the product. The fewer problems users had, the higher the score. Phocas users gave Phocas a 9.5 in this KPI. Sisense users gave their software a 2.2.

    Customer satisfaction combines a number of KPIs, including price-to-value, vendor support and product satisfaction. Phocas received a 9.6, and Sisense received a 6.0.

    Phocas delivers and supports a high-quality data analytics solution, which is why Phocas has a 96 percent annual customer retention rate. BARC noted, “Phocas offers its platform at a fair price, supports the customer during and after implementation, and provides a smooth user experience with few reported problems, all of which contributed to a top-ranking among data discovery-focused products and Americas-focused vendors.”

    Phocas makes BI simple and accessible, which increases user adoption and widens the pool of prospective users of data and analytics. As a result, more people can find answers and opportunities using your data, helping to create a more data-driven culture.

    For additional insights about how Phocas compares to Sisense across additional KPIs, download Phocas’ highlights report.


    Written by Phocas Software
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