The 10 Coolest Business Analytics Tools Of 2021 (So Far)
The ability to analyze ever-growing volumes of data – data that’s increasingly spread across hybrid-cloud and multi-cloud systems – is critical for businesses to remain competitive today. Here are 10 business analytics tools that caught our attention in 2021 to help meet those challenges.
Businesses and organizations increasingly rely on data and data analysis to guide them in today’s competitive world. A major challenge is finding the right business analytics tools that can be used by a broader range of information workers and can work with data that’s not always neatly packaged or easily accessible.
Today’s business intelligence software goes far beyond the basic reporting capabilities of BI tools of the past. They incorporate AI and predictive analytics capabilities, may be embedded within widely used applications, and can work with huge datasets that may be scattered across hybrid-cloud/multi-cloud systems around the world.
Here’s a look at 10 business analytics tools, some from startups and some from established companies, that have caught our attention in 2021 – so far.
For more of the biggest startups, products and news stories of 2021 so far, click here .
Startup Cardagraph debuted its eponymous business productivity analysis software in March following two years of development and beta testing. The SaaS-based Cardagraph Platform is designed to provide business data and analytical insights to business managers, particularly those in operations, financial and marketing roles, with the intention of replacing legacy business reporting systems that no longer make the cut.
The Cardagraph software connects to systems such as Salesforce, Slack, Google, HubSpot, Workfront, Jira and others, then applies proprietary algorithms, artificial intelligence and machine learning to the collected data to provide managers with information about what the company calls “areas of focus, opportunity and improvement.”
Knowi Elevate, launched in January by unified analytics platform developer Knowi, is a fully managed SaaS data analysis system specifically for sales and revenue generation teams to use within the Slack collaboration application.
The idea is that sales personnel can access and analyze data – wherever it resides – from within Slack, rather than forcing them to log into a separate business analysis tool. Knowi Elevate allows users to ask natural language-based questions, generates automated reports within Slack and provides alerts for changing metrics.
Kyligence develops a high-performance, AI-enhanced analytics platform that can deliver sub-second response times against petabytes of data. The software is based on Apache Kylin, an open-source, distributed analytics engine for performing multi-dimensional analysis on huge datasets.
In January the company launched Kyligence Cloud, the first cloud-native release of the Kyligence platform. Available on the AWS and Microsoft Azure cloud platforms, Kyligence Cloud offers the elasticity of a cloud-native architecture and separate scaling of compute and storage functions. New in the cloud release is an AI-augmented engine that uses machine learning algorithms and auto-indexing to improve performance.
Ocient develops its eponymous data analytics software that’s designed to ingest, store and analyze massive volumes of structured data – tens of terabytes, multiple petabytes and even exabytes of data, according to the company.
The system is based on the company’s proprietary Ocient DAS (data analytics solutions) technology, including analytics software written for specific use cases and what the company calls an “ultra-large-scale” relational database with trillions and even quadrillions of rows and columns.
Sisense Fusion is an AI-driven system for building customized data analysis functionality directly into customer- and employee-facing applications with the goal of delivering analytical experiences to users in the context of their work and in easily consumable and actionable formats work – what some are calling “data stories.”
Sisense Fusion, which debuted in February, includes a high-performance, scalable engine to simplify complex data and analysis, a platform with APIs for building customized analytical experiences, and AI technology to automate actionable intelligence.
Startup Sisu’s augmented data analytics system helps users quickly scan and explore large volumes of cloud-based customer interaction and sales data for business intelligence tasks in customer acquisition, segmentation and retention; product optimization; and even risk analysis and fraud detection.
The Sisu system combines statistical analysis and machine learning capabilities to analyze millions of dimensions and trends in cloud-scale data and identify changing metrics. In February, Sisu unveiled a redesigned user interface to streamline the analytics experience.
Starburst, which markets a high-performance query engine for analyzing distributed data, developed Starburst Stargate that enables organizations to run cross-cloud analytics on data distributed across the globe.
Stringent data transfer and data sovereignty regulations are making it difficult for multinational companies to analyze data that resides across international borders. Starburst Stargate, launched in June, makes it possible to perform analytics on data across physical boundaries without moving data, ensuring compliance with data privacy and access control requirements.
Stargate also operates as the SQL-based query engine within IT environments built on distributed data mesh architecture.
Salesforce acquired data analysis and visualization software developer Tableau in 2019 for $15.7 billion. Recently Salesforce’s Einstein Analytics predictive analytics software was moved to Tableau, which has been operating as an independent subsidiary, and renamed Tableau CRM.
But Tableau CRM isn’t just a rebranding move. The two companies have been building links between Tableau CRM/Einstein Analytics and Tableau’s product portfolio, making it easier for businesses and organizations to collect and analyze customer and sales data from Salesforce and other systems.
Tableau CRM officially launched in January and Tableau followed that up in March with Tableau 2021.1, the latest release of the Tableau platform with Tableau CRM integrations. Business users can use models and calculations built using Tableau CRM/Einstein Analytics within Tableau and access Tableau CRM via a Tableau dashboard extension in 2021.1. They also can leverage Tableau CRM’s capabilities when using Tableau Prep data preparation tools.
ThoughtSpot has been one of the rising stars of the business analytics space. In May the company took a big step to bring its search-based business analytics technology to a wider audience with ThoughtSpot Everywhere, a low-code platform for developing interactive data applications and cloud services with built-in search and AI-driven analytical capabilities.
ThoughtSpot Everywhere, according to the company, goes beyond the static dashboards created by other embeddable analytics tools to allow users to interact with data through natural language searches. And the tool’s AI capabilities automatically monitors underlying data to flag relevant changes.
Veezoo Knowledge Platform
Maintaining that data exploration and deriving meaningful business insights from data is too difficult using today’s data analytics tools, Switzerland-based startup Veezoo in April debuted technology that provides a new way of modeling data and making it accessible to business users using natural language queries.
The Veezoo Knowledge Platform includes Veezoo Knowledge Graph, a semantic layer that provides a unified view of SQL data, connects to any SQL database and helps bridge the gap between business and data teams. The platform also includes Veezoo Knowledge Language, a SQL-based data modeling language for semantically modeling data for queries, and the Veezoo Knowledge Studio integrated development environment for building and managing a natural language BI system.