Siebel Gets Analytical

Siebel Systems has announced a series of new and enhanced customer analytic applications. The company aims to bring deeper analytics functions to several key industries, including financial services, life sciences, communications, consumer goods, and high technology, which the company says has not fully realized the potential of predictive analytics.

The company says that with Customer Analytic Applications 7.7, Siebel adds to its market-leading customer analytic applications new, guided analytics and business process integration, expanded vertical solutions, disconnected analytic capabilities for mobile users, and numerous analytic platform enhancements. Additionally, Siebel is introducing new, intelligent customer-interaction applications, which apply predictive and descriptive analytics to effect customer treatment and interaction in real time.

"Some industries are more quantitative and need the metrics to know everything about their customers," says Duane Cologne, senior director of marketing and international sales at Siebel. "Other industries go on gut, and don't feel they need analytics. We need to show each group hard ROI and the impact to the bottom line."

Denis Pombriant, vice president and managing director of CRM practice for research firm Aberdeen Group, says Siebel is on the right track in terms of analytics. "Siebel has done a great job of embedding analytics in the line of business application so businesspeople can get great insight into the business," he says. "That kind of distribution of technology is powerful."

Siebel customers are also looking forward to having the analytics capabilities of 7.7. Bonnie Henn-Pritchard, assistant vice president of technology services for the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway Company, says the railway company has a lot to gain from adding analytics. "We are not using analytics, but are very excited about it," she notes. "We measure everything and every day we send out a fifty page report of metrics. To have an analytics package to help with that would be amazing. We are data junkies and this is the next step for us and CRM."

Cologne notes that when Siebel releases version 7.7 in the spring of 2004, there would be little distinction between the CRM product and analytics, since Siebel plans to deeply embed the capabilities into the CRM solution.

Cologne also stresses the importance of analytics in vertical industries, and says that Siebel will continue to redouble its efforts to provide that capabilities to vertical segments. "That is our key differentiator," Cologne says, adding that the business intelligence market is expected to grow to $10 billion by 2010.

--Additional reporting by Senior Editor Lisa Picarille

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