Qlik, originally founded in 1993 in Lund, Sweden, moved its headquarters to the United States in 2005 after raising funds from several venture capital firms. It was acquired by the current owner – private equity company Thoma Bravo – in 2016.
Qlik offers a compelling portfolio of end-to-end platform-based solutions for analytics and data management. In the area of data management, the vendor offers a number of services for data ingestion and transformation, catalog features and automation services.
‘Active intelligence’ and continuous intelligence from real-time, up-to-date information delivered through data pipelines, designed to trigger immediate actions, play an important role in achieving this. The portfolio as a whole, which was formed by substantial internal development and multiple acquisitions, is called Qlik Active Intelligence Platform. It aims to help customers to bridge the gaps between their data, insights and actions to better inform decisions and drive actions based on solid evidence that accelerate business value.
As the centerpiece of the Active Intelligence Platform, Qlik Sense provides enterprise-level BI and analytics, supporting a broad spectrum of analytics use cases across organizations. It is powered by Qlik’s associative in-memory engine and offers flexible and fast access to analyzed data. Qlik focuses on business users as its target audience for all product features from data preparation to the creation of interactive applications. Data preparation, traditionally script-based in Qlik, can be conducted in a visual interface for most data transformations but still generates code that can be changed directly or optimized by developers if required. These improvements make data preparation more accessible for business users and at the same time satisfy the needs of developers.
Augmenting the user experience with helpful and guiding functions is at the core of Qlik’s vision to reach more users with well thought-out BI and analytics capabilities. During data preparation, joins and default aggregations are suggested for measures. Qlik Sense offers further guidance and automation for data visualization to benefit data consumers by actively recommending suitable visualizations to users based on fields selected and their metadata. Additionally, ML powers the suggestion of insights for consumers in ‘Insight Advisor’ and NLQ. ‘Insight Advisor’ works in conjunction with the associative engine to provide augmented analytics capabilities including search, conversational and natural language analytics. AutoML for advanced users and improved integration for Python and R open up Qlik’s powerful analytics engine to data scientists. This should help customers to find more insights in their data assets.
User & Use Cases
Customers use Qlik Sense for a wide variety of use cases. Most respondents (90 percent) use interactive dashboards, which are its core strength. In addition, 85 percent use it for enterprise reporting and 75 percent for ad hoc query. 74 percent of customers use the software for analysis.
Like with most tools, consuming reports and dashboards is the most common task carried out by business users. Qlik Sense manages to make analyzing data easy for business users through interactive applications, which results in 81 percent using the tool for this purpose. 45 percent create reports or dashboards with the software and 37 percent of users prepare data using Qlik Sense. The solution’s characterization as a visual analysis solution geared to business users is also highlighted by the two most frequently evaluated competitors: Microsoft Power BI and Tableau.
Current vs. planned use
5 products most often evaluated in competition with Qlik Sense
Percentage of employees using Qlik Sense
Number of users using Qlik Sense
Tasks carried out with Qlik Sense by business users
Company size (number of employees)
Want to see the whole picture?
BARC’s Vendor Performance Summary contains an overview of The BI Survey results based on feedback from Qlik Sense users, accompanied by expert analyst commentary.Contact us to purchase the Vendor Performance Summary