Thomas.I Microsoft BI & Analytics

A Site Dedicated to General BI Issues and MS BI Issues: Architecture and Technology

More on Performance Point

Posted by thomasivarssonmalmo on June 9, 2007

I have spent some time learning about Performance Point CT2. A new CTP3 is on the way this month with the final features included.
This product actually consist of three previous products:
  • BIZ: Never released outside of Microsoft but used internally, according to MS-people I have talked with. This is the Planning part of Performance Point.
  • Business Scorecard Server 2005: This is one of two products in Performance Point Analytics.
  • ProClarity Analytics: This is the second product in PP-Analytics.
Planning is not that simple product that I have expected. Budget is a complex process with most organizations. I know because I have built a solution for a customer with DTS and Analysis Services writeback. The three days I have spent to learn more about Planning was not sufficient. It will probably take two weeks or more to know this product fairly well.
The main steps in Planning to set up are:
  • All users of the planning application
  • All roles for the users like budget approver and budget contributor
  • The cube model for the budget process
  • The forms for entering budget data(Excel)
  • The budget cycle
  • Business logic
  • And more

Still I think that Planning will be great because many organizaions have very simple applications like Excel Sheets for the budget process(time consuming) and Performance Point will have a competetive price tag. In this first release I do think that organizations that use this product will need consulting/experts to set up this. It is to complicated for end users.

The new version of Business Scorecard Server 2005(in PP-analytics) is also a big step forward in building KPI:s. The tools like indicators and the visual support for setting thresh holds and trends are things that make me doubtful about the future of KPI:s in SSAS2005/2008.

Some of ProClaritys visual tools(Decomposition Tree) will be included in the Report design/creation part of PP-Analytics. They will not appear as client add ins for Excel 2007 only as design tools for creating reports for a Dashboard. Both the scorecard part and the ProClarity part is incorporated into PP-dashboard designer. The portal for publishing is either Sharepoint 3.0 or Sharepoint 2007 server. It is also possible to publish directly to Excel and Powerpoint files but also to Reporting Services.

If you like other ProClarity tools like the Performance map they will not be included in the first release. My guess is also that ProClarity will be a fully integrated release of the next version of Office.

The last release of ProClarity Analytics(6.3) will be last version of Professional, Analytics Server and Dashboard Server. I have worked with this platform since it was only an Olap Services client in 1999.

After the 6.3 release  it is Excel, Reporting Services, Performance Point and Sharepoint that will be the future of MS-BI reporting. 



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