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What's the best alternative to Oracle Discoverer for E-Business Suite?


In June 2017, Oracle support for Discoverer was ended. Oracle announced their plans for phasing-out support in March 2014, so if you haven't done already, it's time to look at alternatives.

It's a shame to hear the death-knell of such a venerable 20-year-old business intelligence tool, especially if you've put a lot of time and training in to the product.

But life goes on, and it's better to view the changes as more of an opportunity than a threat: Oracle Discoverer was long in the tooth, and it certainly doesn't have many of the features championed by the more modern BI upstarts.

But where do you start?

Sustaining support

Doing nothing is an option. In the short term it's the least cost and effort!

You'll continue to receive 'sustaining support' from Oracle, so it really depends on how business-critical those reports and analyses are. You might get away with it...for a while.

Yet it's likely that you'll experience difficulties further down the road.

Sustaining support means that the product is not certified to work with other Oracle products, and it won't be updated or patched for security flaws. Plus your new staff probably won't be interested in learning what could be viewed as 'obsolete' software.

Move to Oracle OBIA

Oracle Business Intelligence Applications (OBIA) is Oracle's answer.OBIA-logo.png This is a version of OBIEE (Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition) designed specifically for use with E-Business Suite and other ERP applications.

It's a good product, undoubtedly. However, the journey to OBIA is not a smooth one. It will still take training, modification and customisation to get you in to a position comparable with where you were before with Oracle Discoverer. The migration will cost in terms of finance, time and resource.

Use a third party alternative for your business information

There are plenty of third party alternatives that have sprung up to fill the void left by Discoverer. In general, they're more visually modern than Discoverer, offer a range of up-to-date business intelligence/analytics functions, and work well across modern devices like phones and tablets. Many provide the advantages of software-as-a-service, and perhaps inevitably: they're less expensive than OBIA.

Migration of Discoverer workbooks is key

Our E-Business Suite consultants have researched the third party alternatives to Discoverer, and they recommend SplashBI.

Among its many features, what attracted them to SplashBI was the way that your tried-and-tested workbooks could be imported seamlessly. This avoids having to re-create Discoverer reports and re-training staff on a wholely new product. You can read more here SplashBI Discoverer Migration datasheet (PDF).

More information and video below.

SplashBI Migration from Oracle Discoverer

SplashBI Discoverer Migrations

SplashBI has a built-in Discoverer migration utility. The utility converts Discoverer workbooks and business areas to SplashBI Domains and Reports. It supports all the data sources that Discoverer workbooks use: datamarts, warehouses, online transaction processing systems and Oracle E-Business Suite.

It also converts the fields in the Discoverer folders. This means that the converted report can be modified without having to customise or extend the original Discoverer view. It directly reads the Discoverer metadata from the EUL schema, so you can then choose the business area/workbooks to import into SplashBI.

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Combine data from many sources

While our primary concern is the analysis and reporting that comes from your E-Business Suite installation, we know that a modern data-driven business may need to combine data from many disparate sources.

This used to be a cumbersome and labour-intensive faff! Not any more: SplashBI provide connectors that can easily integrate your data sources while also abiding by your current security definitions.

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Microsoft Excel logo

Attention hipsters: it has an Excel front end!

Excel: the wondrous grid of mathematical magic...

When other Microsoft creations have fallen by the wayside (RIP Clippy), Excel has stood the test of time.

Although there are alternatives, there are still plenty of users who appreciate Excel's versatility and power. The SplashBI Excel add-on means that you don't have to re-create your reports in your BI tool. Users can run reports, format them, analyse the data, and add pivots or graphs - all in Excel and SplashBI.

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Reports on demand, anywhere

Data at your fingertips, no matter where you are or what device you use, is critical for agile decisions in today's competitive landscape.

With SplashBI, access your reports and dashboards from any device, whether it is your PC, tablet or smart phone. With the tap of a few buttons you can run your dashboard and send it to your team from anywhere in the world.

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SplashBI and Xynomix

How our consultants can help

SplashBI may be more user-friendly than Discoverer, but you might need expert help with the conversion process, creating new reports, new data sources, and so on. Xynomix consultants are familiar with E-Business Suite reporting tools - among many others. We'll ensure your transition to SplashBI is smooth and seamless, giving you time to fully appreciate the opportunities its additional features present.

We can also train your team, and be the 'go to' people should you need any assistance with new projects. Contact us for more information.