The Institute for Tourism Zagreb Uses BI to Provide Web-Based Tourist Information
Founded in 1959, The Institute for Tourism is Croatia’s leading tourism research and consulting body. The Institute’s tourism development and management expertise is based on scientific work, market research, business environment monitoring and continuous improvements in its multidisciplinary team.
The Institute for Tourism launched an initiative to enhance its existing range of services. Business Intelligence System in Tourism (BIST) was designed to leverage existing databases to provide Web-based tourism information. Users were offered a three-tier subscription option, as well as free data for the year 2001. Phase I focused on data pertaining to tourist arrivals, overnight stays and accommodation capacity. Subsequent phases included information about tourist spending, competitiveness, trends and forecasts. The user interface and the data were presented in Croatian and English.
For Phase I, The Croatian Central Bureau of Statistics provided the source data for tourist supply and demand. Data was provided as CSV files, which were loaded into Microsoft SQL Server database for further transformation. Cubes were then built using Microsoft Analysis Services. Panorama’s BI Solution was used as the front-end for the Analysis Services cubes, enabling Web data access by either Java applet or DHTML.
A fully automated procedure, users completed the sign-in process the first time they accessed the system. Security was a key priority and was implemented on multiple levels – operating system, OLAP server and Panorama’s BI Solution.
“The BIST project marks the first time that a tourism organization used business intelligence to offer users direct access to information,” said Blazenka Salamon, IT Director, dr. sci., Institute for Tourism Zagreb. “We strongly believe that BIST will enable Croatian tourism to become even more competitive.”
Poslovna Inteligencija Zagreb, a Microsoft Certified Partner consulted with The Institute’s in-house team on the implementation. The first phase was completed in three months.
BIST users gain the ability to analyze and view data with several dimensions:
- time (year, month, season)
- territory (country, region, town, island)
- accommodation (private, collective)
- arrivals (domestic, foreign)
Data is updated every month and users can search information dating back to 2001.
With the implementation of BIST, the Institute for Tourism leveraged business intelligence to extend its scope of offerings. The inherent scalability of the system enabled the Institute to add features/topics of interest quickly and effectively. Nautical tourism was the next phase slated for inclusion.
The success of BIST highlighted how business intelligence can be used to derive value from accumulated business data and knowledge. The Institute was able to provide a quality service on the Internet with minimal technology investment.