July 2011

The future of business intelligence has arrived


Traditional business intelligence has been criticized as ineffective due to its clunky nature and reliance on IT and analysts. Luckily for companies looking to leverage their stored business data to make better decisions, the next-generation of business intelligence technology is none of these things.

Dubbed Business Intelligence 3.0, Forrester Research analyst James Kobielus recently hosted a webinar with Panorama Software to discuss the next generation of Business Intelligence solutions.

“IT is starting to turn into a bottleneck in the flow of intelligence. And users are getting frustrated because accessing necessary content is difficult, because it takes a while to discover new sources and import that information into your data warehouse,” Kobielus said during the webinar.

With BI 3.0, he said, the goal is to empower end-users, unlike traditional analytics models where business managers in need of data reports are fully reliant on the IT department. That’s because next-generation BI is built on three main tenets – Self-Service, Relevant and Social.

Innovative BI solutions eliminate the need for the involving IT, because their self-service nature is user-friendly and makes the technology more accessible to end-users. In essence, self-service BI constitutes “the realization of the BI dream, which is to make an entire company far smarter than the sum of its parts,” Kobielus said.

Relevancy means that users are automatically presented with the information that is necessary for their job functions. No longer will they need to sort through mountains of business data to discover the information they require.

Finally, there’s the social aspect of BI 3.0. Cutting edge solutions, through their self-service capabilities, allow for widespread discussion of business data and analytics reports. That add another layer to the information called “Social Data”, as managers and end-users voice opinions and ideas that can be used to formulate a decision.

” Your companies’ most critical business intelligence may be in people’s heads.,” Kobielus said. “BI is incomplete if it can’t “crowdsource” the brilliance of human communities. Brilliance is the most powerful business asset”.

The expert concluded his presentation by describing how companies can experience long-term success with BI 3.0. The main thing, he said, is to constantly evolve the solution. Companies should deploy social BI company-wide, while adding more user friendly analytics tools and support for complex, real-time information.

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