Salesforce has announced a wave of Analytics apps from ISV’s that will help their customers discover actionable insights from their data.
A tide of 13 Analytics wave Apps
Having announced their Analytics platform last year at Dreamforce 2014 Salesforce determined they could do more to help customers with their analytics efforts.
In announcing their Analytics Wave App pilots they are aiming to help kick start the sometimes difficult process for customer to realise all the benefits that analytics can bring businesses. The new enhancements do not just help customers to deliver insights for their business through the introduction of dashboards but also simplify the next steps they take once these insights have been identified through Wave Actions.
Altogether 13 ISVs have created pilot apps that integrate their software and its data, Salesforce and Salesforce Wave and there will no doubt be more to follow. In the announcement Salesforce concentrated on four of these. We already covered one of these announcements from FinancialForce in an interview with Kevin Roberts around their ERP app.
Apttus, Steelbrick analytics and Vlocity Communications all announced their pilot Apps at Dreamforce to support Salesforce’s new update. Each provides not just the ability for customers to introduce dashboards for their users, but also through wave actions to actually act on those insights.
These Dashboards and actions are created through Salesforce Lightning Dashboards and Apps, which allows customers to populate their own user front end screens with appropriate widgets that not only deliver insights but also enable a rapid response to insights. For example it will be possible to create a case, update an account or assign a task that will enable the issue to be resolved faster than it might have done otherwise.
Implemented properly this is one stage short of prescriptive analytics where the system will itself create the case based on the insight, but that ability may not be that far away. It will be interesting to see how customers take these apps and translate them into a business benefit.
When Wave was first announced it sat on top of Salesforce as most of the traditional Business Intelligence platforms do. It had the ability to access all the Salesforce data and create insights from those data points. With this announcement they have actually integrated the business intelligence into the platform. Not just ensuring that the various dashboards and widgets can be embedded into any Salesforce object but also enabling the possibility that a user can instantly act upon them.
This is actually quite a significant step and while the analytics platform is not the most sophisticated out there it is delivering something that few other ERP solutions are capable of without significant effort.
The Wave analytics platform is available now but Wave Actions will not be generally available until October 2015, but are included in a Wave Analytics Platform license. Salesforce Lightning will become available in October too and is including within the cost of a Sales Cloud license.
In terms of the Sales wave apps in pilot these should become available in October, but the Service Wave apps will not be released until early 2016. To date only English language is available but further languages will be released.
This is one of significant announcements from Dreamforce by Salesforce and will go some way to countering the upcoming announcement from Microsoft around Dynamics 2016. While Microsoft have Power BI, there has been no pre-announcements that indicate that Microsoft have embedded their analytics platform so deeply into Dynamics with this next release.
The difference is that Power BI is designed to integrate several platforms and in emphasizing the integration of Wave with Salesforce one there are pros and cons for the Salesforce approach. Without integrations with other data sources Wave analytics will be perceived as limited in use from those outside the Salesforce user community.