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In many cases, the end of the year gives you time to step back and take stock of the last 12 months. This is when many of us take a hard look at what worked and what did not, complete performance reviews, and formulate plans for the coming year. For me, it is all of those things plus a time when I u...
Birst Delivers Predictive Analytics on Sales
Birst said it will allow for the kind of micro-targeting that Obama used to win the election

It seems it was a heck of a lot easier when an auger simply plunged his hand into the steaming innards of a sacrificed goat or lamb and yanked out the liver to figure out what was going to happen next.

Now we have predictive analytics, even real-time predictive analytics, and fancy algorithms, which is a lot less colorful and maybe less accurate. One way or another it's still a matter of faith.

Anyway, Birst, the agile business analytics folk, has come out with a new version of Birst for Sales Analytics. It figures it can tickle a user's margins.

It claims the launch marks an industry first in delivering deep predictive analytics into sales performance and combining sales force automation (SFA) data with other data sources.

The new predictive capability uses historical data to model and predict the behavior of an organization's sales pipeline and opportunities. It claims the widgetry can predict sales pipeline movements and identify sales opportunities at risk of getting lost.

Birst said it will allow for the kind of micro-targeting that Obama used to win the election.

It tightly integrates with SFA applications and supports the leading SFA applications, including, Siebel, SAP, Microsoft Dynamics, SugarCRM and NetSuite.

Specific to the mighty Salesforce, the new release delivers in-context analytics and collaboration capabilities via Chatter for more actionable business insights.

The integration options are supposed to deliver a seamless and collaborative experience across the entire organization.

Besides letting users share Birst insights via Chatter, Birst takes advantage of the VisualForce framework to embed visualizations and report tables directly into screens like Opportunity or Account.

CEO Brad Peters says rather than looking into the rearview mirror and telling an organization what's already happened, "Our new predictive capabilities give management and business analysts the ability to look through the windshield and see what is ahead, providing the ability to better plan and make better, more informed business decisions."

Birst says every organization has unique sales processes specific to its industry and customers, with multiple operational systems supporting these processes. However, existing sales analytics solutions are inflexible and too narrowly focused on a specific SFA application and its data to fully unlock insights into sales performance across an entire organization.

Lack of time series and trend analysis on snapshots of data over time limits the richness of analytical insights.

Birst for Sales Analytics is supposed to solve these challenges by providing a complete data warehouse that enables answers to what are said to be the most sophisticated analytical questions posed by complex sets of data spanning multiple disparate data sources.

The widgetry works across both public and private clouds. Birst reckons it's one-third the cost, time and staff of traditional big BI.

About Maureen O'Gara
Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at) or paperboy(at), and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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