The 3 Pillars Behind the Analytics Industry's Lowest Total Cost of Ownership


  1. Superior Architecture: Efficiently Grow Your Business on a Modern, Open, Enterprise Platform 
  2. Superior Development: Easily Empower Analysts & Architects with Intuitive, Sophisticated Tools
  3. Superior Delivery: Expand Your Reach (Not Your Budget) of Data Analytics Across the Enterprise 

Executive Summary

As the industry’s recognized #1 platform for Enterprise Analytics, MicroStrategy is best equipped to deliver Intelligence Everywhere for the world’s leading brands. MicroStrategy also offers customers the industry’s lowest total cost of ownership—ensuring that organizations maximize their data and technology investments while harnessing the full breadth of Enterprise Analytics capabilities. 

This executive brief details the fundamental pillars on which MicroStrategy stands, describing how it empowers developers, analysts, architects, and administrators to efficiently accelerate an organization’s rapid advancement along the data and analytics maturity curve—ultimately saving any organization invaluable time and resources. MicroStrategy’s mission is to make every enterprise a more intelligent enterprise; discover how this can be achieved faster, more cost-efficiently, and with maximum business impact.  

Discover the platform built for the enterprise


The past decade has been rife with acquisitions in the BI and analytics industry. Google, Salesforce, Microsoft—there’s no shortage of impressive names in the market. But unlike every other vendor, MicroStrategy is a pure-play, independent enterprise partner that has grown organically without any acquisitions, ever. As a result, MicroStrategy is uniquely positioned to offer a unified architecture with seamless integration of its BI capabilities. There are no hidden integration costs that may cause unexpected delays in timelines or added expense. 


Customers rely on the platform’s robust security, performance, and reusability that helps avoid downtime, minimize development costs, and maximizes productivity. MicroStrategy’s architecture corresponds to a single metadata layer, a single code base, a single server, and a single point of administration. This results in far fewer moving parts in a solution, as well as the tightest possible product integration. 


MicroStrategy delivers one software solution with flexible, predictable pricing options, without requiring add-on services or unexpected costs for the most sophisticated deployments.


The efficiency and longevity of a BI implementation is also dependent on the robustness of the underlying metadata model. Most competing BI tools focus on developing individual reports as quickly as possible, neglecting the reusability of the report components, and sacrificing the ability to create and maintain a BI deployment efficiently.

As a solution, MicroStrategy is built with a long-term vision in mind—designed with unmatched metadata architecture based upon the following goals: 

  • To provide single, centralized, and shared metadata for all reporting, analysis, and monitoring, and 
  • To deliver the highest degree of metadata object reusability and full object-oriented development.

Stop reinventing the wheel

MicroStrategy’s object-oriented metadata acts as a central repository that stores reusable object definitions including but not limited to attributes, metrics, filters, prompts, consolidations, custom groups, reports, and templates. These objects can be nested as building blocks to create more complex objects; for example, a filter can be reused within a metric to create a conditional metric, the conditional metric can be used inside a prompt, and the prompt can be used in hundreds of reports across the enterprise. 

If an underlying object changes, every other object dependent on it automatically changes as well. Having this organizational data fabric, built using the MicroStrategy platform, ensures total consistency across business definitions and reduces manual and redundant maintenance by promoting automatic change management. 

Other BI technologies rely far less on reuse, and far more on each developer’s ability to create the same components over and over again for use in each individual report, i.e., deploy once with MicroStrategy, and your developers will never have to reinvent the wheel. 

MicroStrategy’s array of intuitive products delivers the insights your business needs to operate with the highest degrees of data-driven intelligence. MicroStrategy DossierTM empowers users to explore data with a fully customizable, interactive book of your business. And MicroStrategy LibraryTM serves as a users’ personalized portal where they can access dossiers and reports. 

Stay flexible and avoid lock-in

Today’s business landscape requires interoperability across data-spheres and vendor ecosystems, and MicroStrategy’s open architecture is loaded with APIs and SDKs to ensure customers can leverage all of their data investments—without expensive and time-consuming integration requirements. Developers are empowered to quickly, and natively, integrate with the most popular 200+ data sources from MicroStrategy’s extensive library of connectors. MicroStrategy also delivers a comprehensive set of REST APIs that make it easy to directly embed the platform in packaged and custom applications, workflows, and devices.

Delivering a single version of the truth, MicroStrategy provides users with seamless access to trusted, governed data directly within their favorite tools. Easily integrate with Microsoft Excel, Power BI, Tableau, and other productivity applications in order to provide users with the flexibility to leverage trusted data from MicroStrategy directly within the client applications they are accustomed to. MicroStrategy also provides integrations for Jupyter and RStudio to enable data scientists to connect to published MicroStrategy data, leverage it in their tool, and publish back updated data—all without leaving Jupyter or RStudio.

Embrace innovation by leveraging the most open analytics platform on the market. 

Most importantly, MicroStrategy is committed to ensure customers have the choice of where to deploy their analytics platform without compromising functionality. The fully featured platform can be deployed on premises, the customer’s cloud environment, or the MicroStrategy Cloud™ (MCE). MCE is a fully managed cloud service. It optimizes and streamlines management of your deployment on your cloud infrastructure of choice—increasing scalability, performance, and security to free up your team to focus on building the data and analytics solutions your business needs to thrive. 

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Build efficiency into every workflow

As the scope of business intelligence systems expands with more data, more users, and more applications, administration is a primary driver in efficient management of any intelligence ecosystem. Admin tools encourage the use of established best practices to promote clean and easy deployment management and maintenance (and to avoid costly mistakes). As the platform built for the enterprise, MicroStrategy delivers the industry’s most advanced capabilities alongside a curtailed learning curve—so developers can quickly build solutions for your most challenging business problems. 

MicroStrategy provides a set of powerful tools to efficiently automate and manage time-consuming admin tasks and reduce IT workloads. Competing BI technologies only provide a subset of administration efficiency tools, leading to increased manual efforts that can monopolize resources. With MicroStrategy Workstation, your people can actively manage your Intelligence Center using this one tool to rule them all.  

Shift your workflows into a higher gear

Accelerating a data-driven culture in a post-pandemic world starts by empowering developers to do more, with less—faster than ever before. An efficient intelligence ecosystem needs to provide instantaneous answers to a large number of business questions with the least number of reports or dashboards possible. The more complicated the solution, the more likely issues will arise in the seamless delivery of information. Having fewer reports and system components to manage significantly reduces the development time and efforts required to build and maintain an organization’s BI system. 

MicroStrategy uses a powerful personalization engine that can provide multiple variations of a single report or dashboard based on user selections at run-time. Business users and executives can seamlessly navigate and explore different report views without creating new reports or needing pre-defining drill paths. As a result, a single parameterized report can easily suffice the needs of hundreds or thousands of users and significantly reduce the number of reports to be explicitly defined and maintained for your organization. 

Get more out of every analysis

MicroStrategy’s parameterization engine allows developers to significantly reduce the number of reports needed to be explicitly defined and maintained. Developers can use powerful object prompts that allow end users to select which report objects such as metrics, attributes, filters, templates, and hierarchies to include on a report at run-time. As a result, a single report allows a large number of end users to get answers to their questions by dynamically creating personalized views.

To maximize productivity, developers can use multi-level prompts so end users can control the aggregation level of metrics on the report, filter prompts so end users can qualify the data set to be included in report or dashboard, and value prompts to allow alphanumeric and data values that specify constants for filtering criteria and metric calculations. 

Prompts can be created and saved as standalone metadata objects and can be reused across the entire BI deployment as building blocks to create other objects like reports and filters.

MicroStrategy users can drill anywhere in the entire data warehouse or across multiple data sources for boundary-free investigative analysis. Users can automatically drill within or across hierarchies without pre-defining drill paths. The functionality that enables multi-level drilling also serves to empower developers with enterprise-grade data governance controls, i.e., ensuring users only have access to data based on their unique permissions. As a result, data scientists and analysts have the flexibility and confidence they need to explore data with governed, self-service BI and analytics—building and creating different views from a single report to find deeper insights and explore underlying data stories. 

Share insights to the edge 

Ten years ago, the promise of self-service BI was a north star in the industry, as organizations rushed to ensure that everyone in their enterprise had the ability to analyze data. But the reality is, not everyone is data literate—and no one has the time, expertise, or initiative to imbue every decision they make with their organization’s best data insights. 

HyperIntelligence on top of the Salesforce application.

MicroStrategy’s solution to this challenge is to cost effectively, and seamlessly, inject intelligence right to the edges of the enterprise—putting insights directly into the places where people already work in their day-to-day jobs. 

The breakthrough innovation HyperIntelligence® is the first way the solution is achieved. HyperIntelligence Cards can be built and deployed to users at an organization within hours—not months. The user experience is elegant: by simply hovering over highlighted text in the screens where people are already working (websites, business applications, or mobile devices), users can see key metrics, visualizations, and even next-step recommendations.

With MicroStrategy as an enterprise partner, Embedded Analytics is a second strategy your organization can undertake in its pursuit of Intelligence Everywhere. As the recognized market leader in this capability*, MicroStrategy supercharges its customers’ applications—from adding dashboards into existing web apps, to infusing business apps with insights that delight users and skyrocket productivity, to being repackaged within completely distinct technologies for OEMs. 

In addition, customers can leverage AI to nudge users to the most-likely next action in an organization’s core application via a seamless and intuitive experience: no user training required. Business value and analytics adoption go up, development costs go down—and stakeholders are empowered to make smarter, faster decisions.      

When your solution has been iterated on and is ready to scale—the MicroStrategy Cloud is available to your organization. Seamlessly scale to tens of thousands of users, no matter where your data resides—now, or in the future. MicroStrategy Cloud delivers the scalability, performance, and security your organization needs, even for the most stringent data security requirements for financial institutions, healthcare providers, and government agencies. This is evidenced in MicroStrategy’s expected approval for FedRAMP Certification in 2022. Customers have 100% confidence knowing their data is secured under the highest-grade controls and best practices the BI and analytics industry has to offer.

Next Steps

With the background knowledge of how your people are empowered to achieve Intelligence Everywhere, it’s time to experience what’s possible at your company. Accelerating your organization’s rapid advancement along the data and analytics maturity curve can yield results faster than you may think. Speak with a member of our team today to discuss your unique business challenges—and how MicroStrategy can serve as your enterprise partner to achieve faster, more cost-efficient results.