The Value of Business Intelligence
There is a lot of buzz these days about Business Intelligence (BI). What is BI and how is it beneficial to an organization?
Generally, BI refers to techniques used to analyze business data and compile it in a way that helps stakeholders make better business decisions. Every company has raw data; BI is used to transform that data into usable information about the company. BI can be used to track performance metrics and other measurements, analyze current and past trends, give insight to successes and failures, and even estimate future data. The capabilities of BI are only limited by three things: the level of commitment from senior management, level of need for BI, and the amount of applicable business data available.
BI projects will fail without support from senior management because managers won’t help overcome setbacks and probably will not use BI to make business decisions. Also, before the BI project is implemented you must determine whether or not there is a business need and whether there is a clear business benefit by doing the implementation. Finally, it is critical to the success of any BI solution that you determine what information you are seeking and make sure the data that you will derive that information from is available, accurate and uniform. If the data is not valid, the BI will be misleading or useless.
Without limitations though, BI can help managers make informed business decisions and offers a competitive advantage in any industry.
-Heidi Christensen, PEI