Reflections from QlikWorld 2021: Active intelligence, SaaS & more.

By Oskar Grondahl
Published 13th of May 2021

QlikWorld has come to end, and it’s time to process all the new knowledge and inspiration that I have earned. First of all, I must say that even though Qlik did a fantastic job of hosting this event in a digital way, I can’t wait until we can all meet in person. I find it very difficult to keep up the energy in front of the computer and I especially miss all the good spontaneous meetings that you would normally have at an event like this. But nevertheless, I learned a lot about how Qlik sees the future around data but also where they are focusing most of their efforts going forward.  

Qlik’s 3 main focus areas this year 

Active intelligence 

The concept of active intelligence describes being proactively alerted as opposed to needing to search and find the data in question. Active intelligence is not anything new, with concepts such as BAM (Business Activity Monitoring) having been around for almost 20 years but is slowly becoming a requirement within the BI world. 

Owning the entire data journey 

With the purchase of Attunity last year, it comes as no surprise that Qlik is committed to owning the entire data journey. And I think it makes a lot of sense considering that data visualization has become more of a standard commodity. With the QDI (Qlik Data Integration), they can now “own” the entire data process from raw data to visualization.  

Qlik will most likely be very aggressive going forward in order to capitalize on their existing customer base and move them into the QDI. This will be the key to making sure that customers continue using Qlik as their primary visualization tool. There is a lot of potential for the customer that decides to move to QDI and Qlik Sense. When you have the same vendor for your data warehouse and visualization, it gives you advantages. But for larger customers, it will be a significant investment moving from existing DW solutions into QDI.  

Qlik SaaS  

Unsurprisingly, Qlik sees the Qlik SaaS as the future for visualization tools. Considering that many of their customers have already moved from QlikView to Qlik Sense, I think that Qlik will be successful in moving customers into Qlik SaaS. In my opinion, the shift from QlikView to Qlik Sense involves a more difficult decision — in my experience they are targeting a somewhat different use case. Qlik Sense and Qlik SaaS are basically the same product, the only difference lies in how they are hosted. 

QlikWorld 2021 takeaways 

To summarize: 

  • Visualization is now a commodity; data prep is where the big battle among suppliers will take place in the coming year. 
  • SaaS – all vendors are pushing towards Saas. It’ll be interesting to see if customers are open to going all-in on SaaS or if hybrid solutions are the way to go. 
  • As always, regardless of the chosen tool, make sure that you have a governance platform that can support your entire data journey. 

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