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SharePoint as Borg (and the rise of Microsoft Management Reporter)

With Microsoft moving the scorecarding and analytics of PerformancePoint server into SharePoint it sure seems that SharePoint is the go-to repository for all the capabilities that Microsoft doesn’t really know what else to do with. Remember Microsoft Content Management Server? That got sucked into SharePoint too. This strategy could turn out for good or ill depending on your view of swiss army knife product packaging.

Something called Microsoft Management Reporter, may be the exception to prove the rule. I’m assuming this is the same Management Reporter that is now part and parcel of the soon-to-be defunct PerformancePoint, but stay tuned. Microsoft is looking to make that the successor reporting tool for Microsoft Dynamics partners and their customers, replacing the venerable FrX, Forecaster and Enterprise Reporting products that many customers use with their Dynamics ERP applications.

But the PerformancePoint-to-SharePoint migration means that Microsoft is rethinking plans to immediately de-emphasize those older BI products. Enterprise Reporting was off the price list but is now going back on. Officially, Microsoft says it is working to update the roadmap for those products. Unofficially, the company says Management Reporter has next-generation financial reporting capabilities that are not directly analogous to what FrX does.  So the current product line will get supported and sold until the BI story  is straightened out.

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