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Who Needs a Business Intelligence Strategy?

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David Linthicum: While an interesting and valuable concept, BI is not getting the implementation and planning resources it requires and thus it's largely tanking within most enterprises. Organizations are implementing a data warehouse and calling it good, but a data warehouse is not necessarily BI, and thus the value may not be there.  So who needs a Business Intelligence strategy?

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  • Everyone needs a BI strategy, because BI is no longer something a few analysts do to deliver reports on what happened over the last three months. Companies need to know what's happening in their environments now. BI and analytics are becoming a part of key applications, or streamed to decision makers via performance dashboards.

  • BI has been around for years now. Does that mean its matured or is it stagnating? Currently the buzz is around reinventing BI perpective with CEP, Operational, Pervasive BI trends.. The question is is BI strategy the real driver or does it fit in the overall EA scheme that enabled/innovative enterprises now prefer?

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    Having worked BI projects with over 40 clients in the last 22 years, I have found that most BI initiatives are immature. 1) No business case, 2) Inappropriate solution for the problem(s), 3) Lack of data and metadata management, 4) Poor or non-existent governance, iterative approach and PM and 5) Staff with little or no BI/DW skills or knowledge. The cost and impact of a conducting a BI strategy is a very small price to pay for the quick and dramatic benefits it usually provides.

  • Business Intelligence (BI) is an important function of any organization’s strategic framework and in today’s world, organizations that are inclined towards analyzing their databases and formulating solutions based on the trends observed, are the primary implementers of BI.

    A successful BI strategy is the backbone for applying effective BI. This strategy involves participation from the business users, knowing their needs and making sure that the BI program addresses their business goals. It has to clearly articulate their objectives from the program and should stay away as much from technical jargons. It should focus not only on the “who? and the “what? questions, but also on the “how? question. For your BI strategy to be more than just technically rewarding, it has to address the business needs and make sure it encompasses all.

    In most organizations the IT group is responsible for the overall BI strategy. This group usually focuses on the BI tools and technologies that will be used and usually has a disconnect from the business groups. Most BI strategies fail because of this gap in addressing the business needs, wherein the BI strategy focuses more on architecture than on business needs. Another main reason of failure of BI in an organization is isolated silos of BI with each group making their own decisions leading to a fragmented strategy.

  • Agreeing with everyone here's a quick summary.

    Strategy = plan = focus = execution.

    Trick question - if you don't have a plan, can you achieve your goals?

  • As the posters here have so eloquently pointed out, a well thought out BI strategy is key. However, we have found two common hurdles to this goal: First, too many organizations confuse creating a technology plan with developing a coherent BI strategy. Second, the desire for an all-encompassing BI strategy can obfuscate the needs of individual users and business groups.

    End users often have a need for what is sometimes referred to as operational or tactical business intelligence -- an easy way to get quick answers to the problems that arise in the course of their workflow. Business unit end users increasingly are implementing their own BI solutions because the costs and time associated with traditional IT centralized and controlled BI solutions are not commiserate with the results.

    The point is that a complete BI strategy must be developed from more than just the top down or technology perspective. Strategy must also be considered from a bottom-up perspective and identify specific needs and processes, including those not well-served by traditional large-scale data warehouses (ie. most end users just want corporate data in Excel). Tactical BI solutions that provide independent self-service insight directly to the line of business users have to be a critical piece of a BI strategy.

    • Business Intelligence (BI) refers to skills, processes, technologies, applications and practices used to support decision making.

      BI technologies provide historical, current, and predictive views of business operations. Common functions of Business Intelligence technologies are reporting, OLAP, analytics, data mining, business performance management, benchmarking, text mining, and predictive analytics.
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  • Many organizations have data warehouses which integrate operational systems into one place and, they produce some reports from them. Although they may have differing degrees of maturity, organizations have the right to claim that they have the BI systems in place. But there is a big difference between having a data warehouse that is obviously disconnected from the decision-making process and having a BI program that is integrated into all aspects of the business and decision-making process
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  • it is a good article everyone should use this
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  • Business intelligence (BI) technology gives business users the ability to access, analyze, and
    share information within an organization. BI is taking on an increasingly strategic role as more
    organizations look for ways to tap into the valuable data stored in their operational systems. BI is for every type of businesses, start-up etc.

    A strategic Business Intelligence platform puts the right information in the right hands at the right time,
    and gives managers and executives the ability to test various scenarios for business spending and investments while monitoring important operational drivers of
    company performance.

  • Every enterprise user needs Business intelligence strategy for making better business decisions.Business intelligence technologies are helpful for gathering, storing, analyzing, and providing access to data.

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