What vendors have communications-driven DSS for collaboration?

by Dan Power


With the growth of cloud computing more sophisticated communications-driven DSS have been developed to assist managers in collaborative decision-making situations where they are making tactical and strategic decisions. Communications-driven DSS is a type of DSS that emphasizes communications, collaboration and shared decision-making support. Current products do much more than supporting multiple people in sharing ideas and accessing data. Newer systems build on the place-based group DSS of the 1980s and 1990s and add the social media and Web 2.0 capabilities of recent years to build more sophisticated web-based collaborative platforms.

At least six vendors have sophisticated communications-driven DSS platforms that can assist in collaborative tactical and strategic decision-making and planning:

1. Decision Lens ( -- The software provides a decision methodology based on the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) to help a group of stakeholders collaborate to structure a decision process, establish decision criteria and weights, and capture and blend the personal preferences and opinions of decision makers with fact-based data to build consensus. The website asserts "Decision making is the most critical driver in determining the success or failure of your organization." Decision Lens uses a Software as a Service delivery model.

2. Expert Choice ( -- web-based Comparion™ platform is an easy-to-use solution for collaboration and prioritization, supporting team decision-making and easy-to-communicate results. Expert Choice Desktop is a Windows™-based decision-making analysis platform that was first released almost 30 years ago. Expert Choice uses a methodology based on the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) developed by founder Tom Saaty. The website notes "Each day organizations face tough, complex decisions that involve multiple stakeholders and mountains of data – decisions that often mean success or failure."

3. Lyzasoft ( -- Lyza is a Web-based collaboration hub. Everyone in a workgroup can participate in the decision and intelligence process with the ability, for example, to search, comment, blog, rate, forward and bookmark analysis in the decision process. A user can link a collaboration and analytical stream to a decision or decision process. The website claims "Lyza connects the collective data, expertise, and creativity of your company to help everyone make better decisions."

4. Purus Technologies' ( -- Its Collaborative Decision Management (CDM) platform, DecisionSurface™, combines collaboration, social software and decision-making best practices. The DecisionAsset Framework captures the documents and information used within the decision process or "activities." The website claims "In a volatile business environment, making the right decisions is more important and more difficult than ever."

5. SAP StreamWork ( -- This innovative platform helps a decision maker find and select the best collaborators for a decision based on their profile and capture the entire decision process, including email discussions and other reference data. Basic workflow capabilities allow decision makers with different levels of authority to sign off on decisions made. The website claims StreamWork is "the first and only solution that brings together people, information, and business methods to drive fast, meaningful results."

6. Cogniti ( -- This vendor provides enterprise performance management software. The software captures, optimizes and monitors strategic, operational and financial planning decisions and the execution of those plans. Specifically, it enables networked teams to collaborate on a plan, use scenario modeling to compare courses of action based on financial value, and then define and implement KPIs to continuously measure and manage the performance of resulting key strategic and operational initiatives. "Cogniti software is purpose-built to redefine the planning process." This is a broad scope planning package that support modeling, collaboration and data analysis. Check .

According to Gartner analyst Rita L. Sallam, "Emerging CDM platforms are ... combining BI and other sources of information used for decision making with social networking and collaboration capabilities, and with decision support tools/algorithms and models, to help knowledge workers make and capture higher-quality decisions."

Decision Lens, Lyza, DecisionSurface™ and StreamWork are next generation collaborative platforms. Much progress is occurring in developing these group support, collaboration tools.


Power, D. Decision Support Systems: Concepts and Resources for Managers, Greenwood/Quorum, 2002.

Sallam, R., "Who's Who in Collaborative Decision Making," Gartner Research note, September 1, 2011 at URL

Last update: 2011-12-17 07:29
Author: Daniel Power

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