Solver Celebrates 20 Years: Executive Interview, Part 3
At the end of 2016, we sat down with CEO Nils Rasmussen, COO Corey Barak, CIO Hadrian Knotz, and CTO Mike Applegate to discuss 20 impactful years of being a leader in the Business Intelligence (BI) industry. This is the final segment in the series, where the executive team members discuss what differentiates BI360 and what they would like to be known for in 20 years.
What makes BI360 different from other BI/CPM tools?
Barak: You can bring in so many modules of data. Internally, we have 20 different types of data sources to create dashboards and reports. There’s just so much you can do, and it’s really all part of your creativity at your company. What is something that you need to do that is a manual job? Go out and use BI360 to help you solve it.
Knotz: One of the things I really like about the suite as well – it’s actually very user friendly. It’s easy to build reports, it’s easy to build a warehouse, it’s easy to understand how the different pieces interact with each other. And with the new version 5.0, the ETL piece will become easier as well, and that’s what so many people always struggle with in house: moving data from place to place can be very difficult. The new ETL tool we’re building is going to allow us to bring data from the cloud into the warehouse – and vice versa.
Rasmussen: If I can add on to that, I like to say that BI360 is the best of three worlds. One world being a very flexible data warehouse, where you can combine all of the different types of data sources. Corey gave an example of 22 data sources here for our internal implementation. Two being the flexibility of designing whatever you need in terms of budget, forecast forms, reports, and so on, and that’s where our extremely powerful Excel add-in comes in, where you build what you can deploy in our web portal. The third thing and most important for end users is that we have one single web portal where end users can do everything without going from a report writer to a budget software to a dashboard tool. You have absolutely everything in our portal, and with version 5.0, our cloud version, it gets even better the way we’re deploying it. I think people will be very excited this spring when they see it.
Applegate: If you ever have a question about what limitations are actually there, you can just call this guy because every single project that we have internally, here’s Corey saying, “Hey, we should just do that in BI360. It’s possible, right?” Project management, timekeeping, everything.
Knotz: He’s really found every possible use.
Applegate: Of course, we have to tame him and tell him sometimes, you know what, let’s actually buy something that’s specific to that process, but you’re definitely the test of “is it possible” – pretty much everything is possible in Corey’s eyes.
What do you want Solver to be known for in 20 years?
Barak: I think the people. If people, whether it’s our employees, our partners, our customers – the global wide family, if they’re happy and they love Solver and the product, it will live forever. And their kids, the entire extended family will know what Solver brought to them from a business standpoint and personal standpoint.
Rasmussen: I will add a couple of Ps to what he said, so he brought up P #1 – people. I’ll bring up P #2 and 3. So, product obviously, which is why we have Mike on the team, to give us great technology. People, product, partners – partners being #3. We couldn’t do what we’re doing without our amazing global partner channel. And we want to be known for that 20 years, 40 years from now – being the best in the world, the best in our market space in these three areas.