IBM SPSS Software FAQs

The frequently asked questions below should help you in solving your most common inquiries. The questions below address the most commonly asked questions with regard to IBM SPSS software.


What does SPSS stand for?

The letters “SPSS” mean something different today than they did when the product was conceived. In 1968, when the company was founded, SPSS stood for Statistical Package for the Social Sciences.

Evolving from our academic roots to becoming a leading analytical solutions provider today, we simply use the name SPSS. Our solutions now are is helping our customers realise significant business value by becoming more predictive and making smarter business decisions.

What is PASW?

PASW stands for Predictive Analytics Software. This was the interim name given to the portfolio of products provided by SPSS. These Solutions are now co-branded SPSS-IBM.

What is predictive analytics?

Predictive analytics helps connect data to effective action by drawing reliable conclusions about current conditions and future events.

Predictive analytics, like enterprise resource planning (ERP) and customer relationship management (CRM), is both a business process and a set of related technologies. Predictive analytics leverages an organization’s business knowledge by applying sophisticated analysis techniques to enterprise data. The resulting insights can lead to actions that demonstrably change how people behave as customers, employees, patients, students, and citizens.

The predictive analytics process begins by exploring how specific business issues relate to data describing people’s characteristics, attitudes, and behavior. These numeric and free-form data sets, which originate from both internal systems and third party providers, are cleansed, transformed, and evaluated using statistical, mathematical, and other algorithmic techniques. These techniques generate models for classification, segmentation, forecasting, pattern recognition, sequence and association detection, anomaly identification, profiling, propensity scoring, rule induction, text mining, and advanced visualization.

Combining predictive analytics models with organizational business knowledge provides insight into such critical issues as customer acquisition and retention, up-selling and cross-selling, fraud detection, and outcome improvement. Through measuring uncertainty surrounding these issues, predictive analytics enables proactive risk management, refining key decision making processes through controlled, iterative testing of potential actions and their likely intended-and unintended-consequences. These findings and their corresponding business rules can then be deployed within front-line operational systems to identify new revenue opportunities, measurable cost savings, repeatable process improvements, and sustainable competitive advantages.

Predictive analytics carries strategic and tactical ramifications for organizations that recognize the inherent value locked within their existing enterprise data. Strategically, predictive analytics provides a quantitative foundation for rapidly identifying, objectively evaluating, and confidently pursuing new market opportunities. Tactically, predictive analytics identifies precisely whom to target, how to reach them, when to make contact, and what messages should be communicated.

Why did IBM acquire SPSS in 2009?

SPSS’ Predictive analytics was the core driver behind the acquisition. Today’s business environment is fundamentally different — new economics, globalization, massive interconnections and increased risk, coupled with an explosion of information. Organizations need to do more than just sense and respond to current business conditions; they must be able to predict those conditions and then act. Predictive Analytics is the critical enabling technology needed to achieve these efficiencies, detecting and analyzing patterns in historical and current transaction data as well as attitudinal survey data to help organizations predict potential future outcomes and determine the best actions to take.

What does the acquisition mean for me as a customer of SPSS Ireland?

As an existing customer with SPSS Ireland you will see no difference in terms of support or customer focus. SPSS customers can now benefit from the combined technologies and skills of both companies, giving them an open standards-based information infrastructure with analytics expertise and global resources to help optimize their businesses and maximize enterprise performance.

SPSS Ireland Services continue to be the Irish leader in providing expert consultancy and solutions in Predictive Analytics in Ireland.

If you would like further information please email us at or call us on +353 (0) 1 415 0234.

How can I contact to get a quote?

Please feel free to contact us on +353 (0)1 4150234 or on +44 208 757 8820 to discuss your requirements.

How much does SPSS cost?

The cost of SPSS depends of:

  • The number of users.
  • The type of license, i.e. concurrent or named user.

For more information on the costs of specific software please contact us directly.

What is a single-user SPSS Licence?

A single-user license (also known as a named-user license) allows you to install the software on a fixed number of machines. You will have a different license code for each machine..

What is a concurrent/ networked SPSS Licence?

A concurrent-based license allows an unlimited number of installations of the software but only a specific number of users to access the software at one time. The users may be based across multiple departments i.e. if you purchase a two user concurrent license, an unlimited number of users can install the software on their computers, but only two users will be able to access the software simultaneously.

How can I receive an evaluation copy of IBM SPSS Statistics software?

Trial versions of SPSS software titles are available from the software section of the Presidion web site.

How does the license renewal work?

The annual maintenance fee includes ongoing use of the software, ad-hoc technical and statistical support and all software upgrades. The maintenance is invoiced annually on the anniversary of purchase. 

For more information the Licensing and Installation FAQs section answers to the most commonly asked questions regarding licensing and installation.

Are user manuals available for IBM SPSS Statistics and add-on modules?

If you receive a physical shipment of SPSS media, the software generally ships with a separate CD containing PDFs of other relevant documentation.

In addition, all documentation available with SPSS software products is available for download at IBM website. You will need to register and log-in to the site. Once you are logged in, you can click on the Downloads portion of the site, and navigate to the product and document you need.

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