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Impact - A Blog by INM

The Changing Face of BI

July 10, 2008 by Andrea Simmons

In the previous article of this series, we looked at how changes in the enterprise are creating a need for BI. In this final article of the series, we will look how BI has changed to meet the needs of the new market it addresses, from the challenges it creates to the evolution of the technology.

BI in its current form is a relatively new market that comes with a number of challenges, some which are technical and others which are less so. Some challenges include:

  • Organizing a company’s data into a data warehouse
  • Establishing and enforcing standards for the new BI solution
  • Managing security and compliance
  • Traning staff on the operation of new sytems
  • Managing the cultural shift in an organization at all levels (executive, management, and staff)

A recent article from Internetnews.com does a nice job of summing up how more and more organizations are looking for solutions that move beyond the deep analysis of metrics through custom built software programs, and are opting for more dynamic and readily accessible solutions that are always available through a web-browser.

The article goes on to discuss how organizations are leveraging rich Internet application (RIA) technology and Software as a Service (SaaS) to create BI solutions that are more competitive and provide ready access to metrics at any time. The benefits of large scale data manipulation, strong visualization tools, and quick updates are tempting executives toward more packaged RIA-based solutions that are offered as a service.

Whether your organization subscribes to the school of thought that a custom solution provides the best strategy for BI, or that working with a CGI or Accenture type consultant brings the best value, I would encourage you to contact us to discuss your project and how we can help improve the delivery of information in the most accurate, relevant and appropriate way. I also welcome your comments on this article series. Please feel free to post them below or to email me at Andrea@INM.com.