Saturday, March 28, 2009

BI Giant has Clay Feet

Jean-Michel Franco opens his Information Management's March 2009 Special Report by pointing out a problem with today's corporate BI usage:


It took more than 30 years for BI to reach maturity, a little longer than it took for other key components like enterprise resource management and customer relationship management. But whilst the latter have seen the creation and redesign of entire information system landscapes in a big-bang mode, BI investments have taken place in a gradual and often ad hoc manner. In spite of unifying concepts such as the data warehouse, each decision support project often generated its own tools and selection of service providers, architectures, data models and standards. As a result, despite the fact that BI and performance management represent more than 10 percent of the typical IT budget, it can be compared to a giant with clay feet: strong footprint, but sparse foundations.

While uncoordinated, decentralized Business Intelligence implementations and usage may not have been an issue in the past, Franco says that has changed -- BI now provides companies with mission-critical functionality that requires centralized strategy and management.

Franco urges companies to "review and streamline their decision support architecture" and define "a cohesive BI roadmap." As part of the strategy, Franco recommends establishing a corporate team dedicated to Business Intelligence.

Read Franco's whole report at Information Management's website and, if you have not already read it, see my blog on establishing good BI foundations.

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About Me

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I am a project-based consultant, helping data-intensive firms use agile methods and automation tools to replace legacy reporting and bring in modern BI/Analytics to leverage Social, Cloud, Mobile, Big Data, Visualizations, and Predictive Analytics. For several world-class vendors, I led services teams specializing in providing software implementation and custom application development. Based on scores of successful engagements, I have assembled proven methodologies and automated software tools.

During twenty years of technical consulting, I have been blessed to work with smart people from some of the world's most respected organizations, including: FedEx, Procter & Gamble, Nationwide, The Wendy's Company, The Kroger Co., JPMorgan Chase, MasterCard, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Siemens, American Express, and others.

I was educated at Valparaiso University and the University of Cincinnati, graduating summa cum laude. In 1990, I joined Information Builders, the vendor of WebFOCUS BI and iWay enterprise integration products, and for over a dozen years served in branch leadership roles. For several years, I also led technical teams within Cincom Systems' ERP software product group and the custom software services arm of Xerox.

Since 2007, I have provided enterprise BI services such as: strategic advice; architecture, design, and software application development of intelligence systems (interactive dashboards and mobile); data warehousing; and automated modernization of legacy reporting.