Saturday, January 15, 2011

BI--It's all in Your Head (or Somebody Else's)

Mike Tarallo at Pentaho says that real Business Intelligence is not about software; it is about people:
"BI in general involves many different factors in order to be successful no matter what software or skill set is being used. It requires the knowledge and expertise of the individuals who know it best. This includes the customer knowing what problems they have or want to prevent, as well as the software vendor and/or consultants who know how to provide solutions for those problems."

Mike has witnessed people being too quick to just ask for a specific BI tool instead of explaining to vendors what problem they are trying to solve and listening to advice. If you do not understand your problem, your self-selected solution is probably going to be wrong.

Also, Mike warns that people often do not even know they have a problem, so they are unaware of their need for a specific BI tool until after it has been pointed out to them.

Mike writes:
Business Intelligence is about collaboration, communication, discovery, knowledge, insight, direction and action to just name a few. These factors along with the proper software and services can provide an organization with a successful BI implementation. The software can be part of a specific BI Platform or simply an application development environment used to create business applications that provide knowledge on data. Business Intelligence is not just about collecting data and reporting, it is a methodology in which experts can provide assistance. If you would like your organization to succeed with BI, it is extremely important to understand its factors and learn how to analyze and use the data created by this methodology.

That is good advice from Mike and his "swamp" blog: before buying a BI product, speak with a variety of BI vendors and independent experts.  These individuals can help you see your problem in a new light and show you how other smart people have solved similar issues.


inventory pos system said...

I appreciate your post, thanks for sharing the post, i would like to hear more about this in future.

Christopher Hinn said...

Business intelligence is a broad category of applications and technologies for gathering, storing, analyzing, and providing access to data to help enterprise users make better business decisions. BI applications include the activities of decision support systems, query and reporting, online analytical processing (OLAP), statistical analysis, forecasting, and data mining.

Business Intelligence Software said...

Thanks for the post. You (and Mike) are correct. Regardless of how many tools you buy it is up to the consumer to make sure they are understand their software properly to reach their ideal goals. The proper BI software will help you reach those goals.

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.