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Art of BI: BITeamwork 3.8 is Certified for OBIEE

Author: Christian Screen | | November 16, 2015

This week we’ve release a very much anticipated of BITeamwork for OBIEE, version 3.8. This release of BITeamwork 3.8 is Certified for OBIEE

Yes, that’s fantastic news, especially upon the release of OBIEE 12c which is similar in nature with the new look and feel to the presentation layer as well as some of the OBIEE plumbing.

What’s New in BITeamwork 3.8?

We are pushing towards are our 4.0 release which will be a huge release for our customers and our development team. On the road there we’ve decided to release this key release for BITeamwork which brings in OBIEE support.

BITeamwork 3.8 brings the following updates based on our roadmap and customer feedback:

Improved Printing Support

BITeamwork has done all OBIEE customers a tremendous favor by adding strong print support to this release. This is just the start of the direction we are heading for print output which currently supports PDF and Image formats at the Dashboard Page and Individual View level. Excel output is already in place. But one key distinction to make between BITeamwork printing and native OBIEE printing is that BITeamwork’s export and printing includes the commentary in context to the export. In the 3.9 release users will also have the ability to print a dashboard page or view to PDF with or without the prompts showing.

Application Role and User Syncing

Application Role syncing has been around since the early release of BITeamwork. We’ve added the ability to sync users as part of the early configuration also. Although, not necessary, as users are captured once they log into the system after BITeamwork has been installed, we’ve had enough customers request this so we’ve added it to the mix.

Image Upload for Comments

BITeamwork has long supported the ability to add images into a comment or annotation. Previous support for doing so was link/URL based. What we’ve done with this release is to give users the ability to upload an immediately and see it visible with comment or annotation. Our customers in Retail, Hospitality, and Sales oriented analytics have really appreciated this functionality which makes telling the story about their data even more compelling. Sometimes it’s just better said with pictures, right? Soon maybe all of your data subject areas or dashboard pages will have their own memes.

Dashboard and Report Prompt Predication Storage and Retrieval

As a user creates a comment, all context regarding the dashboard, report, and prompt selectivity is captured in OBIEE high-fidelity. Most importantly here are the prompt selection values which helps to determine the context of the dashboard or report predication. The prompt values are now stored in the BITeamwork repository so that developers can aggregate commentary on a report for later review or management interpretation. This is being used today by several customers in production environments. For example, let’s see all of the comments for operational expenses for this BU, across all dashboards and reports for this month of this year compared to last year. This is true narrative performance and analysis.

Improved Dynamic Dashboard Documentation

We’ve spend some time on the development team really understanding how Oracle BI and Oracle EPM customers are using commenting in their daily activities. We’ve seen several Oracle BI customers attempt work arounds for adding commentary to dashboards and all the customers we’ve spoken with want more out of their home grown solutions. Many have purchased BITeamwork which makes us happy.

As an additional bonus for BITeamwork, we’ve developed Dynamic Dashboard Documentation which allows end-users to have dynamic control over a full OBIEE dashboard or just a portion of it for adding content, footnotes, or other dynamic information respective to a particular business unit or the entire company. We’ve added support for image uploading and support 1,000,000 characters to create this type of dynamic annotation to your live dashboards.

Yes, you read that correct, over one million (1,000,000), characters can be added for dynamic dashboard documentation. You have to try this feature to see and believe how game changing it is for your department data stewards and financial users. We are stocked about this part of BITeamwork’s value proposition.

Improved Support for Standalone Analysis Reports

OBIEE users often create a navigation (guided) link to sub-report for drill-through from a main dashboard page to show supporting information. We’ve met Oracle customers who almost entirely use navigation links to these sub-reports for their production reporting for their business units. So, it should be no surprise that BITeamwork gave this some deserved attention to ensure operatbility to allow correct inline cell commentary, cell annotations, and other BITeamwork principle commentary for this area of the OBIEE reporting solution.

Analysis IDE Information Sub-Section

As we advanced BITeamwork’s functionality throughout the Oracle BI system, giving Oracle BI customers extended enterprise functionality for their analytics system, we’ve focused on making using BITeamwork easier and more intuitive. Inline Cell Commentary the real line live commentary functionality with BITeamwork requires a developer to use the BITeamwork API to add a comment to a table or pivot table. This API logic, can now be found directly within the Analysis Editor when editing or creating a net new analysis/answers report. As seamless and transparent as the other parts of BITeamwork are within OBIEE, this is nicely tucked above the Criteria Columns section with a link to drop down the information box to view the API information. In this example, the developer will just copy the logic and add it to a column’s Custom Formula and boom, instance line level cell commentary.

Updates for Embedded BI

We’ve updated Embedded BI functionality to work a bit more seamlessly with SSO systems. This allows companies that want to extend their OBIEE system graph, charts, and other views outside of OBIEE into other areas of their company to do so seamlessly.

Looking Forward to BITeamwork 3.9

We are currently underway with development of BITeamwork 3.9 enhancements. We’ve been accepted enhancement requests from our customer advisory board in order to bring this next release into focus. Bulk saving inline cell comments and certification of OBIEE 12c have been the top enhancements we’ve heard from our customers. We’d like to hear your feedback as well. Remember, all of these enhancements are a simple upgrade from previous 3.x versions.

Great. So, go download the latest version of BITeamwork 3.8 and let these new features provide serious reporting enhancements for your financial reporting teams and analytics gurus.

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