Business intelligence is taking over in numerous industries. This makes a lot of sense. Once companies have seen how well their competitors do when basing decisions on analytics instead of intuition, that's all they need to know. It's a case of adapting or falling behind. While the decision has become clear, BI is not yet done evolving. With new use cases and best practices constantly emerging, it pays to keep an eye on the trends governing the field to ensure each deployment and strategy delivers the greatest possible benefits. Some organizations will perform especially well and become industry leaders, capable of launching outstanding programs.
BI makes progress
To grow, analytics processes must overcome any usage confusion or difficulties. A recent report by Wall Street & Technology's Michael Wolk explained how far business intelligence has come and the barriers it still has to hurdle. He described the current state of the solutions as "coming of age," reporting that while full maturity is still a way off, the ideas behind BI have become important to the leaders of today's companies. So what are the remaining sticking points, the things keeping BI as a great idea in theory but unexplored ground in practice at many organizations?
Wolk noted that it may be users' lack of willingness to use more advanced BI technology holding them back. Instead of getting their insights from powerful programs designed for the task, users are still working with the same types of spreadsheet tools that have always been part of the environment. This may feel natural, but there are hard limits to the types of information that an Excel sheet can convey. Wolk reported that fortunately, there is increasing interest in better reporting technology, as well as general movement toward incisive methods of BI, a marked contrast to the classic and reductive models of the past.
Embrace the right solutions now
Firms in need of a better way to examine information beyond the display methods that have outlasted their usefulness will likely seek out custom visualizations and dashboards. Solutions including Necto can customize the view presented to users to ensure that the elements and stats each employee sees are relevant to his or her role and department. This is a powerful part of self-service BI, because it means that organizations can now count on their various sections to yield their own relevant insights. Freed from the need to be a BI service for the whole enterprise, power users can improvise.