Articles / What is Business Intelligence?

Answers the questions: What is it? Do I need it? What are some of the benefits?

  1. What is business intelligence?
    1. Mukhles Zaman, defined business intelligence as: “…neither a product nor a system.  It is an umbrella term that combines architectures, applications, and databases.  It enables the real-time, interactive access, analysis, and manipulation of information, which provides the business community with easy access to business data. BI analyzes historical data- the data businesses generate through transactions or by other kinds of business activities- and helps businesses by analyzing the past and present business situations and performances
  2. Why do I need BI? What are some scenarios/indicators that I need BI?
    1. The need to integrate data from multiple business applications or data sources
    2. The need to access relevant business data quickly and efficiently
    3. Increasing volume of users requiring and accessing information and more end0users requiring analytical capabilities
    4. Dependency of select super users
  3. Benefits of a BI solution
    1. Share information efficiently and effectively with people across your organization
    2. Empower your people
    3. Simplify collaboration and sharing and improve alignment with a single source for accurate financial and operational information
    4. Gain insights to understand and analyze your business performance and opportunities on a deeper level
    5. Deliver meaningful analysis and reporting
    6. Have a solution with the scalability and flexibility to grow and change as your organization does
  4. The 10 Key Questions to Ask of a BI Solution (as provided in white paper published by BIRST)
    1. Can I get a comprehensive view of my business?
    2. Does it provide full features at an affordable price?
    3. Can I start seeing value within 90 days?
    4. Can I be assured that my data is secure and available?
    5. Can I proceed with limited IT resources?
    6. Does it avoid risky integrations?
    7. Can business users easily create and explore their own dashboards and reports?
    8. Can the solution scale to a large, diverse user base?
    9. Can the solution keep up with my business as its needs change?
    10. Can the solution easily serve my entire ecosystem?