Business Intelligence : Oxymoron?

According to Wikipedia : “Business Intelligence (BI) refers to technologies, applications and practices for the collection, integration, analysis, and presentation of business information to better support business decision making.”

Phew!  That’s a mouthful.  What does that really mean?

I think if you asked a lot of my former employers they would tell you that BI gave them something to talk about and a means of understanding whether the business was successful or not in its objectives.  That is, of course, a limited definition of the power of BI — limiting BI to simple runrate metrics.  While barely scratching the surface of BI, this is a common usage scenario.   Too often, companies are satisfied to just have timely data for reporting – forget rule-based inclusion/exclusion (exception reporting) or any serious analysis.

For BI of any sort to be effective, it must be (1) timely, (2) accurate, and (3) directive. There are many analysis-based exercises that are not so structured:  these can generally be characterized as “data mining”.  BI is a means of understanding how current performance fares against expectations and how it might be improved.  What is sometimes unclear to folks is the importance and necessity of having a functional subject expert define and quality assure the reporting product to be developed.  Without having these people’s input and their buy-in the effort is likely to fail.

Recognizing the benefits of BI is a team effort.  I/T-centric or business unit – centric solutions are doomed to failure – albeit due to cost, ineffectiveness or corporate politics.  Organizations must make every effort to ensure that BI reporting efforts are carefully defined by technologists and functionals if the effort is to be ultimately successful.  The buy-in of the team – end to end – is critical.

I recently came across the website Zoho (http://www.zoho.com/).  If you have not been to this site, please do check it out for yourself.  The site provides a variety of online applications and low-cost alternatives to enterprise platforms (e.g., CRM).  Cool stuff- but even they don’t have an ETL tool!


1 Response to “Business Intelligence : Oxymoron?”

  1. September 27, 2008 at 7:18 am

    Thank you
    This is a cool website.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Moments - powered by Flickr

RSS Economy – Powered by BookMach

  • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.


Error: Twitter did not respond. Please wait a few minutes and refresh this page.

RSS MarketPulse

  • Neil Diamond retires from touring after Parkinson's diagnosis January 23, 2018
    Neil Diamond has been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease and will retire from touring, the legendary singer announced on his website Monday night. Diamond had been performing in Australia and New Zealand a part of his 50th anniversary tour. On the recommendation of this doctors, his retirement is effective immediately, with the remainder of his tour dat […]
  • Trump signs bill ending government shutdown January 23, 2018
    President Donald Trump signed a bill Monday night ending the three-day-old government shutdown. The temporary measure, passed by the Senate and House earlier in the day, gives Congress 17 more days to negotiate an immigration package. Federal workers who were furloughed Monday will return to work Tuesday. The bill funds the Children's Health Insurance P […]
  • First Solar shares jump 8% after White House OKs tariffs on solar-panel imports January 22, 2018
    Shares of First Solar Inc. jumped 8% late Monday after news that President Donald Trump has approved trade protections on imported solar panels and modules as well as imported washing machines for home use. The solar tariffs are approved for the next four years, with a 30% tariff on the first year diminishing to 15% by year four. U.S. trade representatives w […]
  • Adobe raises full-year, first-quarter profit expectations January 22, 2018
    Shares of Adobe Systems Inc. rose 2.5% late Monday after the software company raised its full-year 2018 and first-quarter earnings expectations, citing the U.S. tax overhaul, and said Chief Financial Officer Mark Garrett and general counsel Mike Dillon plan to retire this year. Adobe said it expects 2018 GAAP earnings of about $4.72 a share, and adjusted 201 […]

%d bloggers like this: