Phocas Announces AI Functionality to Make Data Analysis Easier for Business People
Phocas Software, a cloud SaaS company specializing in business planning and analytics, announced Phocas AI that will extend the ease of use of its Analytics product, allowing people to effortlessly query their organization’s consolidated data. Phocas AI will improve the performance of the most widely adopted1 analytics software favored by mid-market manufacturers, distributors and retailers.
“Phocas AI represents a transformative change in the way people experience data analysis and will connect even more people to useful information, “says Blair Cassidy.
The new AI functionality allows customers to type any questions relevant to their own business databases, helping them fast-track decision-making and problem-solving. For example, a sales manager wants to determine the top performing salespeople across regions. She asks Phocas AI “Show me top sales reps grouped by territory for 2023,” and gets an instant answer.
Blair Cassidy, Chief Product and Technology Officer at Phocas Software says AI is the company’s next step in its mission to help people feel good about data.
“Phocas AI represents a transformative change in the way people experience data analysis and will connect even more people to useful information,” says Cassidy.
“To ensure transparency in AI queries, our solution displays how Phocas AI arrives at the answer. This visibility of the steps sets Phocas AI apart from other AI analytics tools that just display results,” says Cassidy.
When analyzing product margins or identifying products that customers have stopped buying, clarity is paramount for confident, informed decision-making.
Cassidy reports positive feedback from customers testing Phocas AI, highlighting the step-by-step approach as unique. “The steps not only validate the chosen path but also serve as valuable training for users, especially for people new to the product. Customers quickly acquire a working knowledge of Phocas Analytics and gain a better understanding of how our powerful DIY analysis layer works.”
Addressing AI accuracy, Cassidy says, “A common concern we hear is the potential for AI to lack 100% accuracy. We’ve invested a lot of time so that our customers get the same results using AI as they would with our traditional query method – following their train of thought but in a faster timeframe.”
“The development team has created Phocas AI to be fast and secure empowering more people to interrogate their business data and have confidence in their results,” says Cassidy.
Phocas AI uses natural language processing to analyze questions and retrieve data insights from the connected data which is transactional data integrated directly from the customer’s ERP and other data systems. This eliminates the need for customers to perform manual steps such as choosing the required dimensions, measures and streams to answer the query.
A gradual roll out for Phocas AI is planned, incorporating customer feedback into iterative updates. Every database built by Phocas customers in Analytics will be AI-ready, with this functionality included as part of the Analytics subscription. The next phase involves transitioning to a fully-AI powered business planning and analytics platform.