Build an insights-driven org

Seven Data Preparation Tools For Business Insights Users – Which One Is Best For You?

Cinny Little
Senior Analyst
March 22, 2017

Got data?  But more to the point, got the RIGHT data, and now?  Low-friction and fast access to data are top priorities for data/analytics and marketing professionals in 2017.  Here’s the picture of priorities:  It’s a high or critical priority for 70% of marketing pros to increase their use of data and analytics for marketing measurement and customer insights – their fourth highest priority.  Data and analytics pros’ highest priority – at 60% of data and analytics pros – is implementing or expanding their complete view of the customer across channels, and over 50% are providing self-service data preparation tools to business users.   Firms are stepping up the pace.

What can help with these priorities?  Data preparation tools.  To accelerate time-to-insights and therefore time-to-actions, business end users and analysts who today wrangle data in spreadsheets or other traditional tools need direct access to data and a significant power assist. Data preparation tools can provide this power, but they must balance features and functions to support different roles and use cases and enable appropriate manageability, security, and governance in today's enterprises — while at the same time delivering speed-to-value.

There are relatively few products that meet those requirements, despite claims by many. Some true data preparation players are large, established players in the business intelligence (BI) and analytics space that have chosen to market and sell their data prep tool as a standalone offering, while others are pure-play offerings and, within that, emphasize different features and functions.

In The Forrester Wave(TM): Data Preparation Tools, Q1 2017, using our 21-criteria evaluation of data preparation tool providers, we identified the seven most significant data prep tools — Alteryx, Datawatch, Oracle, Paxata, SAS, Trifacta, and Unifi — and researched, analyzed, and scored them. This report shows how each provider measures up and helps customer insights (CI) professionals and their technology partners make the right choice.

Forrester clients can access the report to see how each provider measures up and to make the best choice for your needs. If you're not a Forrester client, you may be able to download a reprint by visiting the website of one of the vendors evaluated.

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