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MS EA POWER BI SUB P/U F/O365

Mfg. Part: 7YY-00014-GFCSTU | CDW Part: 3631999
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Product Reviews
Rated 4 out of 5 by 10reviewers.
Rated 4 out of 5 by SQL Server 2016 delivers built-in mobile BI capabilities. Valuable Features:Microsoft SQL Server Report PublisherMicrosoft SQL Server Report BuilderMicrosoft SQL Server Reporting Services (Web Portal)SQL Server 2016 delivers built-in mobile BI capabilities. The above tools give professionals the ability to deliver business insights quickly and easily as well as enabling a quick way of presenting the data/charts/reports over a web portal. The portal is compatible for cross platform, from desktops to major mobile devices.Overall a great way of delivering your insights to your data.Improvements to My Organization:Works with data, systems and tools we already have. They are "additional" tools rather than complete replacement software. Easy to upgrade / install. The new SSRS tools in particular give us an easier way to share insights and reports to our clients and within our own teams. Security is easily managed within SharePoint.Room for Improvement:License fee structure. Mobile reporting Services is only available for the "Enterprise" addition of SQL Server 2016. This comes with a hefty price tag. Would be better if you could pick and choose the features you require and then the price tag is set accordingly. Rather than paying for the full Enterprise addition and getting a lot of features we do not need/use.Use of Solution:We have been using Microsoft's extensive software library for years. But at the time of writing this review, SQL Server 2016 Enterprise is pretty brand new. We knew of the latest reporting services offering and were eager to trial it.Deployment Issues:Deployment isn't rocket science, but it isn't child's play either. There were a fair few standard issues getting everything to talk to each other. Nothing to worry about though. Microsoft has worked well to make sure the latest SSRS is an "add-on" feature that integrates seamlessly.Initial Setup:Straightforward easy setup. Typical Microsoft software (familiar).Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions. July 19, 2016
Rated 4 out of 5 by We switched from Crystal Report Server because it was crashing regularly. Valuable Features:The ease of implementation and reliability of SQL Server Reporting Services far exceeded the solution originally implemented with Crystal Report. The Crystal Report Servers (3 of them) were crashing on a weekly basis at one of the companies where I worked.Improvements to My Organization:We were able to reduce costs by consolidating the 3 Crystal Report Servers down to just one server running SSRS (with one backup just in case). The time it took to run some reports in Crystal were exceeding 5 minutes. The same report in SSRS not only was significantly faster (down to 30 seconds) and the licensing cost savings allowed for a quicker return on investment (less than one year).Room for Improvement:The build in Report Builder for end users needs improvement. But for someone that has some training on SSRS, its very straightforward.Use of Solution:The solution was implemented and still in use to this day to my knowledge.Deployment Issues:No. Following the installation guide was a help with setting up SSRS to use single sign on as well as SQL accounts. The overall setup of the server took about an hour. The conversion of over 200 Crystal Reports to SSRS took some more time but was done with one user and completed within 3 months.Stability Issues:No. SSRS has been rock solid and the server never needed rebooting unlike the Crystal Report Servers.Scalability Issues:No. In fact we were able to decommission servers and switch to using a virtual server for SSRS.Customer Service:Never had to use their support. But, the few times I have had to contact Microsoft, there were very knowledgeable and able to resolve the problem quickly.Technical Support:9, see above.Previous Solutions:Yes. We used Crystal Reports, see above.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions. July 15, 2016
Rated 4 out of 5 by We have the ability to connect separate services like CRM, NAV, Facebook, Exchange, etc. and make data integration and transformation based on these data connections in a few clicks. Valuable Features:Firstly there was the wow effect, as when I saw the number of connectors which were made for this product/service. It is quite fantastic to have the ability to connect separate services like CRM, NAV, Facebook, Exchange etc. and make data integration and transformation based on these data connections in a few clicks. Also, the ability to download new visuals is quite nice. The effect of new graphics for higher management is magical and this is the good way not only for a pre-sale/sale or up-sale, but also for good impressions. Another great feature is, for example, the collecting of data in concrete folder on disk. If there is, for example, 100 csv files from other information systems, these should be automatically merged, analyzed and transformed into great graphical report.Improvements to My Organization:Because the product is based the ability to quickly produce BI insights and reports, it’s really useful on a daily basis. Another improvement is definitely the possibility of browsing the dashboards on smartphone using an app, and another is the ability to quickly produce reports.Room for Improvement:Well definitely the connectors, which is always a huge space for improvement in configurations, especially the amount of connectors etc. Also, the graphic designs of the reports needs work as they are still really strictly defined, and with the amount of output, there isn’t space for such a design realization.Use of Solution:I have used this solution since it was released (a few years ago) and I am using it on a daily basis at work and at university where I work as a researcher and am a PhD student. I use it on mobile, laptop and tablet as well. Also, it has its own app for viewing the reports and dashboards, own app for creating and editing.Deployment Issues:There have been no issues with the deployment.Stability Issues:There was no issue with stability.Scalability Issues:We have been able to scale it for our needs.Previous Solutions:Personally, I used Excel Services/Visio Services.Initial Setup:Really straightforward. The most complex part is defining the data gateways between the cloud part and the on premises part of the infrastructure. Another bigger task is to define security model of all the datasets and reports with correct audience, data refresh etc.ROI:It's too soon to calculate. I think, that for the correct ROI value, you need to have it in place for more than three years. But, it saves a lot of time and not only developers time, but also management time etc. Things are easier when there are functionalities like “quick insight” for auto-creating of data based on machine learning algorithms, or Q&A for using natural query language.Other Solutions Considered:I played with Tableau. I see many similarities in Power BI to other products, so there is no reason to combine many different vendors/third parties to build such a complex BI solution.Other Advice:It's a tool for a new kind of business intelligence from Microsoft. Tool for quick modeling of data structures and for visualizing almost everything you have in mind at the moment. There is still a lot of room for improvement and there is also a huge space for new functionalities. But it’s a simple and great tool for everyday use.You should get it and implement it. However, you should get a trial version, and contact a partner who can provide some sales presentation with the live session (CIE for example) and show, what the possibilities are of Power BI.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions. March 23, 2016
Rated 4 out of 5 by It's been stable for over eight years, but is lacking a data warehouse manager. Valuable Features:* It's a user-friendly tool* Very stable* It always helps us to achieve organizational goalsImprovements to My Organization:It's been stable for over eight years, and all the latest products/versions have backwards compatibility, or an upgrade facility. It has helped to fetch many projects, and to deliver them on time, as well as helping to resolve complex business challenges. The product has continual updates so we can stay on top of the market.Room for Improvement:* Data warehousing manager is not available, which can be introduced* Reporting or SharePoint needs a lot of learning so you can build reportsUse of Solution:I've used it for 10 years.Deployment Issues:No issues encountered.Stability Issues:No issues encountered.Scalability Issues:No issues encountered.Customer Service:Microsoft has a great level of customer service.Technical Support:There are great public forums available for tech support.Initial Setup:* Straightforward - installation, development, deployment, and maintenance* Little complex - Learning the toolImplementation Team:We did it in-house.ROI:I am not sure how to calculate this. The solution significantly improved BI and reporting capabilities. Without this solution, the business can’t think of successful operations.Cost and Licensing Advice:It is not costly when compared with other competitor products. This is a rock solid solution for any BI organization.Other Solutions Considered:We didn't do much evaluation as our dev teams experience is with Microsoft BI.Other Advice:This product is hassle free to utilize for your BI environment.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions. August 13, 2015
Rated 3 out of 5 by Poor support for XML, but it has good integration with other Microsoft products. Valuable Features:All the features are valuable.Improvements to My Organization:We empower users with Enterprise BI and Self Service BI by Microsoft BI.Room for Improvement:Microsoft has poor support for XML.Use of Solution:I've used it for four years.Deployment Issues:There were no issues, and it has good integration with other Microsoft products.Stability Issues:We do have issues, but we can solve them ourselves.Scalability Issues:We do have issues, but we can solve them ourselves.Customer Service:It's good.Technical Support:We are more expert than they are.Previous Solutions:We used Infobeacon and then we added Microsoft BI to Cognos. We are currently looking for a better product and are evaluating Tableau.Initial Setup:It is easy to implement Microsoft BI.Implementation Team:Several projects we implemented through vendors and most we implemented in house. We are more expert than they are.Other Solutions Considered:We didn’t have another option.Other Advice:Quality of data, flexibility and the performance of the tool(s) are the critical aspects of BI. Test the critical aspects by doing a proof of concept using a huge amount of data.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions. April 22, 2015
Rated 4 out of 5 by This is the most compatible solution for medium sized organization but the robustness of the stack could be improved Valuable Features:The integration tool in Microsoft BI stack is one of the best in terms of understanding and together with the script component can make most data imports pretty simple and accurate. Also, the ease of use of the product.Improvements to My Organization:Prior to using the Microsoft BI stack the organization was using a lot of Access and Excel applications which became cumbersome as the organization grew. These tools helped us to streamline the reports and data integration.Room for Improvement:The robustness of the stack could be improved as it fails when we import/extract large amounts of data.Use of Solution:Four and a half years.Deployment Issues:No issues encountered.Stability Issues:Yes, when the volume of data is large.Scalability Issues:Yes.Customer Service:Excellent with online social help and customer care from Microsoft.Technical Support:There is a lot of room for improvement in technical support.Previous Solutions:I used other reporting platforms along with the Microsoft BI stack, but never switched.Initial Setup:The initial setup is pretty simple for most starting users.Implementation Team:It was an in house implementation.ROI:Very high, as it is a very cost effective application compared to any BI tools in the market.Cost and Licensing Advice:It is setup by the organization, so I am not sure about the exact cost and renewal cost.Other Solutions Considered:No, I did not have an opportunity to do any evaluations.Other Advice:It is a great, cost effective solution if the size of the organization is only medium and easy to use and cost of finding a resource is low.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions. February 15, 2015
Rated 4 out of 5 by Despite vague error messages, some functions were cut down from 90 seconds to about less than one second Valuable Features:* SQL Server Integration Services* SQL Server Management StudioImprovements to My Organization:There have been occasions when a certain application would work very slowly on other DB platforms and once we migrated to SQL Server the response times improved dramatically. For example, I recently migrated an application from TeraData to SQL Server and the response times for some functions were cut down from 90 seconds to about less than 1 second! This obviously speeds up the work that gets done within a day.Room for Improvement:The SQL Server Reporting Services can certainly use some more help. Within SSIS, I see room for more connectors and easier debug messages that would speed up the process of development. The biggest hurdle that any developer comes across is vague error messages.Use of Solution:About eight to nine years.Deployment Issues:No. The installation and deployment process has always been smooth and simple.Stability Issues:No. Product is very robust and reliable.Scalability Issues:Adding extra machines to the cluster environment is not difficult but certainly needs experienced developers/implementers to do that.Customer Service:Excellent. They usually turn around within good time and you can also request new features directly from the group that is responsible for the product.Technical Support:9/10Previous Solutions:A different solution was not used previously.Initial Setup:I have been to many projects and usually the setup is pretty straight forward. But even when it comes to complicated setups such as multiple clusters, the product still seems easy once understood.Implementation Team:In-house implementation.Cost and Licensing Advice:It varies from place to place. But a typical license would cost anywhere from a few thousand bucks to the upper $20k-$30k range.Other Solutions Considered:* MicroStrategy* TeraData* Informatica.Other Advice:Look at the amount of data that you have and the amount you anticipate in the future. If you have multiple sources of data and multiple applications consuming it, sticking to a single solution might not be the best idea.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions. January 15, 2015
Rated 4 out of 5 by Very stable tool with some improvements needed in SSIS Valuable Features:SSIS is the most valuable. Individually I would rate features out of 10 as SSIS: 9, SSAS: 8, and SSRS: 7.Improvements to My Organization:Automation. With MSBI, we realized automation from data loading, transformation and reporting.Room for Improvement:The aggregate functions in SSRS.Use of Solution:5 yearsDeployment Issues:Not much with appropriate configuration design.Stability Issues:None encountered.Scalability Issues:Data set is not big enough to tell.Customer Service:Good. Also easy to find solution by Googling.Technical Support:Haven't been using it due to the ease of getting answers on the internet.Previous Solutions:No previous solution used.Initial Setup:I was able to figure out the setup by doing some research and it's not too complex for experienced user.Implementation Team:In-house implementation.ROI:The company spent less than $100k to switch from SSAS to MSBI, which saved the company at least one SAS programmer.Cost and Licensing Advice:Not sure.Other Solutions Considered:Not sure.Other Advice:It's a proven stable tool.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions. December 22, 2014
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