There is sense of frustration among the business intelligence users in the CFO office, marketing, sales, supply chain and other departments. They adopted user friendly self-service business intelligence tools such as Tableau Desktop in a big way. However, they hit an insurmountable wall when trying to access the corporate data securely managed in traditional business intelligence platforms such as OBIEE.
Tools such as Tableau Desktop simply do not work with traditional BI platforms such as OBIEE. Inability to connect these two worlds is a source of frustration not just for the business users, but also for the CIOs and their BI teams. CIOs are losing sleep over the increasing data security risk from proliferation of excel dumps. At the same time, they are worried about the growing inability of their IT organization to keep pace with the DIY business users.
This frustration is exactly what we felt during the numerous conversations with business users, CIOs, and IT teams from several organizations. Both the business users and IT teams are desperately looking for a solution that will bridge this great divide. We set out to tackle this problem and today, after more than 12 months of intense data engineering effort, we are glad to introduce, BI connector for OBIEE, that is specifically designed to solve this burning problem.
BI connector for OBIEE is a revolutionary new tool which provides a simple way to connect to Oracle BI Server (OBIEE) using Tableau and visualize data from OBIEE subject areas. There is no change needed in OBIEE and it allows IT to reuse existing metadata and security model in OBIEE. This tool truly brings the best of both OBIEE and Tableau worlds in just a few minutes!
See a demo of how it works:
Rise of Next Gen Data Visualization Tools
Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE) is a powerful enterprise grade BI tool which has a rich common enterprise business model and semantic layer. OBIEE also has a powerful BI server and rich security features. OBIEE is very popular tool in companies who have standardized on Oracle applications including Oracle EBS, Siebel, Peoplsoft among others. It has an establised history since Siebel Analytics days of late 1990s. Companies have spent millions of dollars building content, security layers, reports and dashboards in OBIEE. It is a IT driven and controlled tool with the business users providing functional input on reports and dashboard building.
In recent times, self-service data visualization tools like Tableau are growing rapidly among the business users. The reason is simple, Tableau is easy to use and has powerful visualization to bring insights to data. A business user who has knowledge of the data and processes can buy the desktop tool and get started on their own without IT involvement. These analysts are hungry for data that are available in establised BI systems like OBIEE.
Why connect from Tableau to OBIEE?
The business analysts have been a report or dashboard user of OBIEE but do not have capabilities to visualize the data the way they can do in Tableau or blend the data with other data due to limitations of OBIEE front end. When they go to IT for access they find out that there is no way to connect from Tableau to OBIEE and due to security concerns IT is reluctant to provide access to the data sources that OBIEE connects to directly. In addition, the semantic layer in OBIEE has a lot additional logical fields and calculations which have been added over the years which will take a long time to recreate in Tableau. The only way the business user can use OBIEE data is to run the reports in OBIEE, download to Excel and then upload them to Tableau. This is clearly an inefficient method and introduces security risk as Excel files are commonly downloaded and placed in shared folders all over the network.
Clearly there is a need to connect from Tableau to the front end layer of OBIEE in real time. That’s where BI connector for OBIEE comes in.
Benefits of BI connector for OBIEE
BI connector for OBIEE brings an easy to download and deploy (under 5 minutes!) method to connect from Tableau to OBIEE subject areas. If a business user has access to OBIEE subject areas then they can use Tableau to directly connect to OBIEE without any IT involvement.
The benefits of BI connector for OBIEE are:
- Connect to OBIEE subject areas without any changes to OBIEE needed.
- No need to download data from OBIEE and load into Tableau. Less security risk and less possibility of stale and wrong data.
- Full OBIEE security model is adhered to with BI connector.
- Blending of local data with OBIEE data is now possible. Lack of blending is a big drawback of OBIEE.
- Companies can preserve their heavy investment in OBIEE and leads to less architecture confusion as to which is the real enterprise BI tool.
- Full features of Tableau are enabled with OBIEE data.