It’s an obvious first question when looking at when purchasing QlikView, just how much QlikView consultancy am I going to need to make this investment in software a success.
Unfortunately the answer is not so straight forward.
From the price tag of QlikView you can tell this is enterprise software, yet a lot of the promotional material talks about its simplicity.
So, is an implementation of it going to be months of consultants on site or a few late nights with the user manual getting your head around the product?
Installation and Data Feeds
Architecturally QlikView is very simple. A server installation can be done onto a pre-configured Windows box in an hour or two and with a zero footprint (browser only) client; rolling out to many users is as easy as setting up Active Directory security and advising users of the URL. There are however some pitfalls with the installation of server – so someone on site to ensure that this goes smoothly is highly recommended.
Once the server installation has been done it is the building of applications that is going to take the majority of the time. It is here that the large variations in the amount of required consultancy really come into play. The bigger issues tending not to be around QlikView development itself, rather the understanding and managing of the numerous data sources required for the suite of applications that are required to be built. In my experience even when a company has a data management team there still can be numerous gotchas when it comes to the completeness and cleanliness of data sources.
Application Development And Support
We have clients of many different sizes and have implemented to many different use cases for QlikView. How we work with each client is therefore very different. Perhaps the biggest variable is the number of, and the prior experience of, the internal staff. I have blogged previously on what makes a QlikView developer, and if you have somebody on your staff that fits this profile then it may be that a bit of assistance with the set up, initial application build and some training is all the consultancy that is required
Don’t, however, make the mistake of thinking that having done “a bit of Crystal” automatically means someone can build your QlikView applications and environment. There are numerous different skills that are required and hidden complexities when you get under the bonnet of QlikView. Sometimes we will do the entire build of all QlikView applications for a client – mounting a small project each time a new requirement comes in on an ongoing basis, and other times we simply go on site and trouble shoot internal developers applications as required.
So, What Should I Do?
All of this doesn’t actually answer the initial question, but what I hope this article has done is illustrated that you should not make too many assumptions either way. Speak to a couple of QlikView service providers about your requirements and take their advice on what consultancy may be needed – but be careful of those who try to oversell consultancy days to line their own pockets.
If you are looking to do much of the development yourself make sure that you make use of QlikCommunity and blogs such as this one to help you out. A good book will also be a great help, and I can highly recommend QlikView 11 For Developers.
QlikView is a great product and if you are just to embark on a project I wish you all the best.