From Unicorns to Cockroaches: The Continued Rise of Embedded BI

By October 8, 2015Embedded BI

Embedded Business Intelligence Will Rise In Leaner Times

Much hhand drawn, sketch, cartoon illustration of cockroachas been written about unicorns, companies that have soared to $1 billion valuations or higher, based on fundraising most notably in the Fortune ranking of Top 100. Recently, reactions have come more frequently – and even quite explicitly – about the problems the unicorn culture has created in the investment and business community. One recent example is from the blog of Mark Suster, a two-time entrepreneur turned venture capitalist.
But what is coming next? Caterina Fake, founder & CEO of Findery and co-founder of Flickr, recently suggested it will be The Age of the Cockroach. Like its namesake, this tech survivor will, in lean times, be gritty, fast-moving, creative and smart.

What does the Age of the Cockroach have to do with Embedded BI? Survival in lean times will be based on the ability to make sound data-driven decisions, rather than driving hype. For independent software vendors and solutions providers, this means working smarter and faster by remaining focused on core offerings. Embedding analytics inside an application is one example of an approach to this. We’ve previously discussed how, according to Tech Target, 75% of ISVs’ future revenue will come from sales of analytics tools inside their applications.

Predicted leaner times ahead mean that business users of an application are going to need to be able to quickly and easily explore their data visually and in real time. A stand-alone or siloed BI solution leveraged by an elite few won’t fare as well in these leaner time as one fully integrated into the host application workflow; one that can provide reports, dashboards and analytics throughout the organization.

While no one would suggest it is time to fully embrace the characteristics of a reviled insect, the transition from striving to be like a fictitious horned-horse to focusing on what it is going to take to survive in the face of tough circumstances is appropriate. We have been through tough times before and difficult decisions are necessary to survive but I would suggest that if the Age of the Cockroach is upon us, enabling as many people as possible with the analytics they need, inside the applications they know, in order to move as quickly as possible, is a must.