I just reread George Orwell’s 1984 for the first time since high school. I must admit that his idea of ‘Big Brother’ watching us all feels so much more real today than it did when I first read the book. Browser cookies, social media tracking, geolocation apps, the NSA and Edward Snowden all give me the willies. I admit that my laptop’s Webcam is covered with one of my business cards and a piece of duct tape (luckily both are black and match the case). But I still worry about my microphone (testing testing). Continue reading
There are plenty of advantages to employing business intelligence tools in your business, and it can be even more useful when various members of the company can collaborate on projects. Of the many trends evolving around business intelligence, collaborative BI is growing rapidly as more and more enterprises embrace the team approach to data analysis. As the expression goes, two heads are better than one when it comes to putting data analytics to work for a business, as teamwork can allow good ideas to flourish whether choosing which data to use for a given project and how to interpret the analysis.
Interest in collaborative BI grows
Dresner Advisory Services recently released its third annual Wisdom of Crowds® Collaborative Business Intelligence Market Study, and the results made it clear that collaboration is key when it comes to analyzing data with a BI solution. The survey revealed that this aspect of business analytics was important to more than 60 percent of surveyed businesses around the world, according to Midsize Insider.
“… this year there is a rebound in interest in collaborative BI, placing it above such high-profile topics such as big data and social media,” Howard Dresner, the organizations founder and chief research officer, explained. “In addition, we see a much closer alignment between the tools and capabilities that users want and the features and functions that vendors are incorporating into their offerings.”
Harness benefits of collaborative BI
The ability to combine analytics with social applications and crowd-sourcing opens up a world of possibilities for using data to improve operations and strategies. Working with others on a project involving data can make it easier to interpret the information and determine the best way to use the analytics to make changes to current and future projects and operations.
It helps to have a BI solution that makes collaboration easier, and Panorama has software that can satisfy this needs. Necto 14 takes teamwork to the next level by offering options for collaboration along every step of the process from determining what raw data to use to analyzing that information to organizing it with data visualisation. The software allows multiple people to work simultaneously on the same projects, as they can make notes on various infographics, charts and other data and share instantly with their team.
While business intelligence is seeing continued growth, the rate of expansion has slowed due largely to the way companies approach big data. The latest Gartner report indicated that business intelligence experienced an average 8 percent growth in 2013 across the globe, but no one saw improvements higher than 12 percent. According to Data Center Dynamics, the limited amount companies and their employees know about big data is a major reason behind the slowed growth of BI.
Lack of know-how
Big data, which encompasses massive swaths of information, can seem intimidating for those unprepared to harness the potential of data analytics. The news provider suggested that part of the reason big data remains such a mystery to some is that they don’t know how to best put it to use for their businesses. This encompasses everything from knowing which data to examine when looking at a specific operation or strategy to analyzing and interpreting sets of information and how they relate to one another.
However, firms can invest in a BI solution like Panorama’s Necto 14 that makes it easier to collect and interpret relevant data. This software can suggest which sets of information may be useful for a particular inquiry, giving users the ability to gain valuable insights regarding various departments and processes.
Too much importance
At the same time as businesses are having trouble harnessing big data correctly, many are also placing far too much emphasis on this large pool of information. The focus tends to fall more on the collection and storage of big data and less on data discovery and analysis, according to Venture Beat. Having all of this information is only useful when it is then analyzed and put to use to improve a business. In many instances, this can be due to the lack of know-how when it comes to using the data effectively. The self-service BI tools available in Necto 14 allow any member of an organization to extract and interpret big data so it can serve to help departments make strategic changes to various policies and operations.
These issues will likely diminish as more companies embrace modern and intuitive business intelligence tools that can help them better harness big data. Inquirer.net reported that new applications and software that focus on making big data more accessible will put the power of data analysis in the hands of more workers.
SAN JOSE, CA, US and TORONTO, ON, Canada – May 1, 2014 – OCZ Storage Solutions – a Toshiba Group Company and leading provider of high-performance solid-state drives (SSDs) for computing devices and systems, and Panorama Software, a global leader in BI 3.0 solutions, have established a technology partnership to deliver real-time Big Data analytics of data stored in Microsoft SQL Server 2014 databases.
The companies have jointly developed a solutions demonstration for the upcoming PASS Business Analytics (BA) Conference showcasing Panorama’s leading Necto BI capabilities with OCZ’s ZD-XL SQL Accelerator’s ability to accelerate SQL Server applications. The collaborated demonstration showcases how the power of data transforms businesses through data-driven insights and business intelligence and will be presented during exhibit hours in OCZ’s booth E-11 at the PASS BA Conference, San Jose Convention Center, May 7th through May 9th.
“The combination of our Necto BI solution coupled with one of the industry’s fastest acceleration cards for SQL Server delivers an advanced business intelligence solution that unleashes the value of enterprise information whether that information is structured, semi-structured or unstructured,” said Eynav Azarya, CEO of Panorama Software. “We are pleased to partner with OCZ to help solve those critical challenges associated with Big Data analysis so that efficient and relevant insights can lead to informed decision-making and invariably better business decisions.”
“We are pleased to join forces with Panorama Software to deliver real-time, self-service analytics of large database data sets that reside in SQL Server,” said Dr. Allon Cohen, Vice-President of Software and Solutions for OCZ Storage Solutions. “The ability to analyze, visualize and collaborate data in an infographic format while accelerating I/O and the application itself provides an extreme performance analytical solution from two visionary leaders in enterprise BI and storage.”
Analyzing large data sets has become a key issue in today’s enterprises as organizations have gained the ability to get access to Big Data and to make it more useful and meaningful. Advanced tools, such as Panorama Necto, enable additional data exploration and advanced analysis to be performed in a matter of minutes providing a powerful combination of in-memory performance coupled with advanced data discovery tools. Powered by in-memory engines, self-service interactive analytics, infographics and dynamic dashboards, the Necto BI solution enables business users to easily access, analyze, visualize, track performance, collaborate with colleagues, and share data for quick, efficient and relevant insights that lead to informed decision-making with minimal IT involvement.
To provide accelerated Microsoft SQL Server performance of these large database data sets, OCZ’s ZD-XL SQL Accelerator leverages its proven PCIe SSD hardware and application-tuned software to deliver low latency flash that can be deployed as a local flash volume, a flash cache for HDD volumes, or as a combination of both. It provides a potent combination of fast flash performance, a unique cache mechanism that makes advanced and statistically-optimized decisions on what data to cache, a dynamic cache warm-up scheduler that enables workloads to be placed on flash cache in advance of demanding and critical jobs, and a wizard-based GUI that enables DBAs to setup caching policies that optimize performance based on SQL Server workloads.
About PASS and the PASS BA Conference
The Professional Association for SQL Server (PASS) is an independent, not-for-profit association dedicated to supporting, educating, and promoting the global Microsoft SQL Server community. Led by a member elected Board of Directors, PASS is run by and for the community, with a global membership of more than 100,000 and growing. PASS strives to fulfill its mission by:
• Facilitating member networking and the exchange of information through local and virtual chapters, free web events and local and regional events
• Delivering high-quality, up-to-date technical content, presentations, and other educational materials for in-depth learning and professional development
• Working with Microsoft to influence the evolution of SQL Server technologies
The PASS Business Analytics (BA) Conference is a professional community-oriented gathering for business analytic professionals and established to meet the needs of a growing BA community affiliated with Microsoft technologies such as Excel, SharePoint, SQL Server, Parallel Data Warehouse, Azure, Hadoop, and more.
About Panorama Software
Panorama is a leader in Business Intelligence 3.0, facilitating the next generation of self-service business intelligence solutions. Panorama’s Necto product is a BI platform which is context-aware allowing any type of user to interact intuitively with data within an intelligent collaborative environment. Panorama recently released Necto 14, the market’s first Business Intelligence data discovery solution to offer infographics for dynamic data visualization. More information is available at www.panorama.com.
About OCZ Storage Solutions
OCZ Storage Solutions – a Toshiba Group Company is a leading provider of high performance client and enterprise solid-state storage products and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Toshiba Corporation. Offering a complete spectrum of solid-state drives (SSDs), OCZ Storage Solutions leverages proprietary technology to provide SSDs in a variety of form factors and interfaces to address a wide range of applications. Having internally developed firmware and controllers, virtualization, cache and acceleration software, and endurance extending and data reliability technologies, the Company delivers vertically integrated solutions enabling transformational approaches to how digital data is captured, stored, accessed, analyzed and leveraged by customers. More information is available at www.ocz.com.
All trademarks or brand names referred to herein are the property of their respective owners.
OCZ Press Contact:
Director of Marketing Communications, Enterprise Solutions
Companies in virtually any industry can benefit from business intelligence, whether they want to improve their marketing strategies, enhance overall operations or monitor production activity. There is some preparatory work that will need to be done before a firm can start effectively collecting and analyzing data with business intelligence tools.
Analyze your business’s BI readiness
Smart Data Collective recently surveyed more than 60 chief information officers from U.S.-based small and medium-sized businesses to find out how various companies were using business intelligence. The researchers asked about each company’s current BI platform and usage and calculated their scores on a scale of 0-100, then categorized responses into five categories from lowest to highest levels of BI maturity.
The results showed that 77 percent of respondents were still in the preliminary stages (nascent and low) of BI development. Nascent companies have either made plans to invest in a BI solution or were just beginning to establish methods of collecting big data. For those that fell into the low category, basic data analytics were readily available, but typically only for a select number of departments within a company.
Determine how you could put BI to use
The survey also revealed that one-third of businesses using BI do so to examine data from the past. While examining the details of sales from the previous quarter can provide insight into how well the business did, companies can also monitor real-time data to get more up-to-date information. Panorama’s latest BI software offering, Necto 14, can easily pull the latest information from a database. The ability to see and analyze data in real-time makes it easier for companies to implement changes when strategies may not measure up to expectations.
Make BI available to everyone
Data analysis can have many uses that span across a company’s operations, so it would make sense to use a BI solution that every department can put to use. Logi Analytics reported that since some employees may not be at all familiar with BI tools, such as dashboards and reporting, companies should select software that is accessible to any user regardless of their familiarity with business intelligence. Working with raw data can be overwhelming for people unfamiliar with IT and data analysis. Necto 14 makes it easy for any employee to determine which information they need, and helps them analyze and organize the information into data visualisation through the use of clear, concise infographics.
“Panorama Necto is extremely easy to use and with the self service features our users can create their own private views, reports and dashboards and share the information with their teams.”
Necto has enabled us to expose relevant BI data to our major suppliers where they can analyze the data that is relevant to them. The system is extremely intuitive and most of the users go way beyond reading reports – they easily deploy a wide range of features; creating their own reports, views and dashboards
YES is the only company in Israel that broadcasts multi-channel satellite television to subscribers, and is the first company that provided digital and interactive television services. Since its inception, the company has recruited 578,000 customers who represent about 39% of the multi-channel television market in Israel. YES currently employs around 2400 people and its annual turnover in 2010 was 1.6 billion NIS. YES broadcasts over 150 video channels, including 50 radio and music channels, and a wide range of interactive channels, games, information channels (including portals) and more. These channels also include video pay channels (pay-per-view) and over ten HD channels in i1080 format.
YES has been at the forefront of technology from the start, even in comparison with giant companies in leading global markets. The company is always on the lookout for efficient and new ways to improve its decision-making process and quality.
“YES is an organization that lives and breathes data at the daily level,” explains Ido Bigger, head of BI technology and social networks in the Business Intelligence Department at YES. “The information we need includes daily analyses for services, sales, subscriber activation, faults, campaign analysis, customer care, trend analysis, meeting organizational goals, and financial models. These, as well as many other types of data, are generated and enriched continually by the Business Information Department, which is part of the Information Technology unit at YES. The data is presented and made available to users in two main ways – Relational Reports (BO) and OLAP views on the BI portal which is based mainly on the Panorama platform.”
YES choice the Panorama platform as a tool for analyzing business intelligence (BI) a few years ago. According to Bigger, the main reason for this was: “The superior capability of the Panorama to perform OLAP cube analytics in a faster, easier and simpler way than other BI tools. The Panorama platform served YES as a smart analytical tool for viewing data aggregations from cubes, easily and simply. We came to the conclusion that in-depth analyses do not have to be performed via complex reports, but rather by means of analytics tools that were specifically designed for this.” In a recent review of the alternatives in the BI area, YES came to the conclusion that Panorama’s solution continues to lead the world of Cube Analysis and decided to upgrade their platform. HighView performed the task of implementing and customizing the requirements of YES.
The system installed at YES was the Panorama Dashboard, upgraded with a number of additions and special features. Today it is used by hundreds of users at headquarters from the rank of CEO to team managers. The system holds a broad variety of data, ranging from reports that provide a comprehensive picture of the daily situation, to high resolution in-depth analysis of fault incidents, service, sales campaigns, and so on. Bigger points out the decision to choose Panorama was a result of the high level of satisfaction of the BI staff in YES with its superior analytical capabilities and impressive visualization.
“We are talking about a platform that is simple and interactive for the end user, that provides superior analytics, collaboration, and interactive deployment of information,” said Bigger. “During the years we have worked with the Panorama solution we got the impression that it is an easy and friendly platform for implementation and maintenance, and therefore continuing to work with it was both natural and desirable.We are great believers in Cube Analysis and in our opinion Panorama is a leader in the sphere. Without a doubt, it is very convenient to analyze cubes with the Panorama engine because of its Drag and Drop feature, easy-to-use graphs, and unique analytic capabilities.”
Panorama solution has enabled YES to make the most of its available human capital and technological advantages, and maintain its prevalence in the competitive market in which it operates.
Bigger said one of the benefits of Panorama is its excellent integration with other BI systems in the organization. Avner Katzman, manager of the BI Department, indicated that many of the decisions made in the company are based on the data presented by Panorama. “We are talking about strategic and ongoing tactical decisions. Panorama is an especially useful tool in the customers division where real-time data is presented from the company’s systems and from which we can respond quickly to results from the field and demonstrate business flexibility.”
YES invests in enhancing the customer experience. A central part of these efforts is in the management, measurement and analysis of the organization’s performance,” said Ronny Barnov, Vice President of Information Technology at YES. “The BI systems, and among them Panorama, enable us to provide the organization with a convenient and user-friendly visual picture, and to make knowledgeable decisions in order to improve performance”.
“Panorama is an especially useful tool in the customers division where real-time data is presented from the company’s systems, and from which we can respond quickly to results from the field and demonstrate business flexibility.”
Ido Bigger, Manager of BI Technology and Social Networks in the Business Intelligence Department at YES.
Founded in 1869, Jelly Belly Candy Company is a manufacturer of jelly beans and other confections. Jelly Belly produces the leading gourmet jelly beans in the world as well as other treats such as candy corn and Gummi Bears. Jelly Belly products are sold in 35 countries around the world and in 2003, the company reported annual sales of more than $140m US.
Baltika Breweries has been in production since 1990 with headquarters in St. Petersburg, Russia. Since then, Baltika has become the leader of the Russian beer market, the second largest brewery in Europe, with revenues of more than 2 billion Euros, and conducting business with more than 60 countries across the globe.
Currently, Baltika Breweries operates 12 breweries, managing over 10,000 employees and covering more than 350,000 points-of-sale throughout its massive logistic network.
Baltika Breweries was on the rise when it faced data warehousing challenges after merging with three other Russian breweries in 2006. The merger led to a sudden influx of information that presented obstacles in conducting successful data reports to monitor performance. At first, the company integrated Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services and Performance Point as its business intelligence platform for data warehousing and analysis. Pleased with the benefits of the multidimensional analysis the platform offered, Baltika embarked on an initiative to find and deploy an easy to use yet powerful business intelligence solution on top of the platform to construct a unified BI infrastructure throughout the organization. After evaluating offerings from SAP, Oracle, Cognos and other BI vendors, Baltika selected Panorama BI suites for its advanced analytical functionality yet simple, interactive user interface. With Panorama, Baltika Breweries was able to improve collaboration for its logistics department across the country, as well as successfully track key performance indicators (KPIs), which streamlined the entire company’s productivity.
The holding re-organization that accompanied Baltika’s merger with three other breweries presented a number of data warehousing challenges. Because of IT differences between the multiple breweries that became connected through the merger, Baltika’s process took from several hours to several days for analysts to receive relevant data just to create a single report.
As a growing business, Baltika Breweries needed a solution to help manage its information system that consists of nearly 10,000 users and a database of over 200 terabytes of corporate data.
Baltika initially integrated Microsoft business intelligence platform to help operate data warehousing technology through a vast number of users. In addition to the complete BI platform, from the most innovative and flexible OLAP engine (Analysis Services) to Reporting (Reporting Services) and ETL (Integration Services), Baltika also selected the Microsoft solution for its best total cost of ownership (TCO) and integration with Office and SharePoint for data distribution – a familiar environment for the users.
To provide easy to use, interactive analytical tools to its managers to interact with the data, Baltika was looking for a solution that would seamlessly integrate into its current Microsoft-based environment. The company evaluated solutions from Panorama Software, SAP, Oracle and Cognos.
Baltika Breweries moved forward with Panorama BI suite for its ease of use and interactive interface for the business users. This combination of new self-service BI capabilities fit Baltika’s needs, as it offered a number of advantages, including extended data visualization, light web-based environment, and tight integration with Microsoft’s platform.
Baltika quickly integrated these benefits into its top management level and logistics departments to gain a foothold on its diverse data warehousing needs. The company is planning to extend the deployment of Panorama’s BI suite into other departments, such as marketing, manufacturing, sales and the rest of supply-chain department by 2011.
Consistent view on data throughout the organization
Baltika’s goal is to use the business intelligence solution to construct a unified infrastructure for its entire organization, with the main objective to enable all departments to use the same setup for BI tools and unified analytics. As the historical development introduced a number of different individual / departmental views on how to manage corporate data, Panorama has provided an essential tool to successfully eliminate these challenges and provide vast self-service capabilities and data visualization.
Panorama’s easy to use Analytics application makes it possible to drill down to a very deep level of the data with excellent performance, and to provide in-depth analysis with in a very short time and in a secure manner.
Self-Service Access to Information & Increased Productivity
With Panoram, Baltika Breweries’ executives have improved their collaboration efforts, especially for the logistics department that spans across the continent, and has improved business productivity by more effectively tracking KPIs.
“We started with key performance indicators–like profit and loss, balance sheets, sales volumes–so managers can see where the problems are located and can drill down to the primary document” – said Herman Epstein, CIO of Baltika, in his interview with Forbes. “When our supply chain vice president organizes meetings for all his plant directors, for example, they can sit in front of the same screen, the same reports, and explain what’s going on. If there’s a red light somewhere, the local manager can open his screen and explain why trends have gone from positive to negative. We can do that on extremely fresh data.”
Overall, Panorama Business Intelligence suite has helped Baltika create unified performance metrics for its entire corporate structure and enabled important business leaders to more easily gain insight to essential corporate data.
- Integrated disparate BI infrastructure and applications across the enterprise
- Standardization on the Microsoft platform while getting the power of self-service analytics and reporting
- Rich BI functionality that satisfies the executive’s need for deep and meaningful interaction with data
- Self-service access to data for managers across the company to improve efficiency and agility
- Reporting time takes minutes instead of days
- The timely detailed reports facilitate the flow of information within the company, ensuring consistent communication across all departments.
Geocartography changes the rules of the game in the world of organizational business intelligence, thanks to the development of an innovative BI solution on Panorama platforms
Geocartography Knowledge Group, one of the leading research institutions in Israel, has been offering scientific and professional expertise in the following range of divisions and Continue reading