ExoInsight is our premier product for enabling access to Essbase for reporting tools (Power BI, Tableau, etc.) and other downstream applications (data staging, etc.).
We started with Essbase, but at Casabase Software our slogan is “Bring your data home”. That means all your data…not just Essbase data. It’s been our intention all along to expand the data sources supported by ExoInsight to include the most-used OLAP applications. The obvious choice for our next OLAP source is Microsoft Analysis Services (MSAS):
While Essbase tends to be used almost exclusively in finance and accounting, MSAS has been applied to all domains – operations, supply chains, product management, manufacturing – as well as finance. This versatility means that MSAS is present in almost every Fortune 1000 company.
The same innovative POV String functionality used with Essbase data sources is available for MSAS ones:
This means you don’t have to know MDX at all to query Analysis Services cubes. This can help your company open access to data that users have previously been too intimidated to even attempt to utilize. Data can also be retrieved at any hierarchy or level (either aggregated or base) and can also include KPIs and calculated members. ExoInsight returns the requested data in a table format that’s perfect for use in tools that either don’t work well with OLAP sources or don’t support them at all.
Of course, data doesn’t tell the whole story in an OLAP cube. Metadata is also easily accessible:
The typical parent/child format is presented, along with a generational one – in which the full ancestry of each member is broken out into a separate column for each level. This view makes working with reporting/visualization tools like Power BI and Tableau a snap.
ExoInsight’s Analysis Services connectivity is not limited to just multidimensional/OLAP cubes. You can also query metadata and data from MSAS Tabular using DAX:
Because Analysis Services Tabular doesn’t provide a semantic layer like MSAS OLAP, there’s not the same distinction between dimensions and measures. This means that ExoInsight must be more flexible when querying Tabular. Specifically, there aren’t separate stored procedures for dimension and data. The ExoInsight_GetMSAS_Tabular stored procedure has a Dimension parameter, which when populated pulls the given table’s columns.
ExoInsight now makes it possible to easily combine data from both Essbase and Analysis Services. Think of the insights that can finally be discovered by having the ability to incorporate operational data from MSAS with your finance numbers from Essbase!
ExoInsight now enables access to both Essbase and both types of Analysis Services. Used with only one of these OLAP sources, it can help your company finally fully utilize its valuable data. And if your company has both Essbase and Analysis Services, ExoInsight can bring these two worlds together. The resulting data synergies can be a game-changer.