The Future Is Now – The 3rd Generation of BI and Analytics Is Right On Time

It was about this time last year that we started to define the vision for the 3rd generation of BI and analytics. Our idea was simple, that data-driven transformation required a new democratized approach to the way in which we drive value from our data. Subsequently, in September, we published our whitepaper which explained how the democratization of data, augmented intelligence and analytics embedded everywhere are the prerequisites for moving beyond the centralized and later decentralized approaches that went before.

Nearly a year later those ideas are now more fact than future vision and they represent the reality of the data-driven world we occupy. There are three reasons why I believe this to be true. First is Qlik’s stand out delivery of the enabling technology. Second is the consumption of this technology by our customers. The third is what is happening in the market around us.

I’ll address the first two by looking back at our global customer event in May. In the product keynote, our team outlined how Qlik has delivered not just against each of the prerequisite 3rd generation pillars, but how we have underpinned that with an architectural approach enabling a true multi-cloud platform. Our integration of Attunity, now a division of Qlik, alongside our existing data assets enables a data integration platform which makes the democratization of data not just possible, but easily attainable for our customers. Our unique approach to augmented intelligence is also now represented in very real generally available capabilities in Qlik Sense, proven by some of the most engaging demos I’ve seen at an analytics conference, ever. Finally, our innovation with our platform enables our ability to lead in the cloud and allows customers to build and run analytics for any use case, wherever they want or are required to do so. In each case, we showed how these key innovations are driving transformation for our customers right now.

However, it’s what is now happening in the market around us that makes this even more germane. The evolution of analytics has been driven by many things. Perhaps the most pivotal until today was the 2007 series of acquisitions by IBMSAP, and Oracle that effectively killed-off the 1st generation business intelligence. While there was, and perhaps always will be some buyer appeal for a single vendor approach, those acquisitions first served as an admission that what had gone before had failed. Subsequently, prospective buyers voted with their feet and the 2nd generation – much more analysis as opposed to report-centric business intelligence – fueled the growth of Qlik and other modern platforms.

All good things come to an end, including now as we predicted the 2nd generation of BI. This time it’s the large cloud platforms who are striking the killer blow, as they use analytics as a way to consolidate ownership of customer’s data. Just like the single stack approach that went before, this approach will also likely fail to deliver the value customers expect. Data-hoarding and cloud lock-in will ultimately become unacceptable for cost and compliance reasons. The integration and exploitation of synergies will stifle the community and innovation. At Qlik we can only be responsible for our own destiny. Democratized 3rd generation analytics represents how we – with a self-contained cloud and data-independent architecture – will continue to deliver the value and business outcomes our customers expect. What we are now witnessing in this 2019 round of consolidation only accelerates the importance of this strategy. Our vision for the 3rd generation of analytics now seems even more fitting, more timely and from a personal point of view, more satisfying. Just remember, you heard it here first.