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New Frontiers in Business Intelligence

Nari Kannan

The Yawning Gap between BI Hype and Reality in Many Companies

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"We make heavy use of our Data ETL Tools, the State of the Art Data Warehousing Solutions and we drive many of the Strategies and Tactics of the Company" is the refrain you hear from users of Business Intelligence in many Fortune 500 companies where IT is mature.

That may be true with many companies. Bur scratch the surface and you will find a lot of horror stories and ad-hoc Skunk Works projects that make more use of Excel Spreadsheets than any BI solution!

This is the gap between the theory and practice of BI today in many enterprises. In many cases, it is because the Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence efforts do not take into view ALL of the business users's needs and come up with a solution that satisfies all.

This is not to say that such a single BI solution that satisfies all of the Business Users in the company exists and it's only the choice of the tool that went awry!  The truth is that many of these solutions in the different areas of Business Intelligence, Sales Intelligence, Financial Intelligence and Process or Operational Intelligence are all evolving, as we speak, based on the unique needs of the different Business Users!

Meanwhile, Business Users have gone on with their own home grown Excel-Macro based solutions, for their own specific purposes.

Of course, there are some software packages like Navision Accounting (Now a Microsoft Product since they bought them some years ago) are designed from ground up to be very spreadsheet- friendly to put in data or extract data from! These get much more traction than other software packages. They may not be suitable for Medium or Large Organizations, but there are approaches that seem to balance the needs of end users and the need for IT to achieve some semblance of standardization of data, tools and approaches without proliferating the company with many end-point, best-of-breed products!

It is not an easy problem currently, but who said Business Intelligence comes neatly packaged and simple to do?

 It is wiser to find out than to suppose - Mark Twain

Nari Kannan's blog explores how new approaches to business intelligence can help organizations improve the performance of business processes--whether these processes are creative or operational, internally-focused or customer-facing, intra-departmental or across functions.

Nari Kannan

Nari Kannan started and serves as the CEO of appsparq, a Mobile Applications development company based in Louisville, KY with offices in Singapore and India. Nari has over two decades of experience in computer systems development, translating product and service strategy into meaningful technology solutions, and both people and product development. Prior to this, he has served as both Chief Technology Officer and Vice President- Engineering in six successful startups, two of which he co-founded. He has proven experience in building companies, engineering teams, and software solutions from scratch in the United States and India. Prior to this, Nari started Ajira Technologies, Inc., in Pleasanton, CA, where he served as Chief Executive Officer for more than six years. While at Ajira, Nari was instrumental in developing service process management solutions that modeled, monitored, and analyzed business processes, initially targeting the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), Telecom, and Banking verticals in India, and Finance, Insurance, and Healthcare verticals in the United States. Prior to this, he served as VP-Engineering at Ensenda, an ASP for local delivery services. He also served variously as Chief Technology Officer or VP-Engineering at other Bay-Area venture funded startups such as Kadiri and Ensera. He began his career at Digital Equipment Corporation as a Senior Software Engineer. Nari has a long involvement with Customer Support and other customer facing processes. At Digital Equipment Corporation he was involved with their 1800 person customer support center in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He was tasked with coming up with innovative tools to help customer support people do their jobs better. He holds a U.S patent for a software invention that automatically redirected email requests for customer support to the right group by digesting the contents of the request and guessing at which software or hardware support group is best equipped to handle it. At Ensera, he led a 45 person team in developing an internet based ASP service for handling auto insurance claims, coordinating information flow between end-customers, Insurance companies, Repair shops and Parts suppliers. Ensera was acquired by Mitchell Corporation in San Diego. Nari holds a B.S. degree in Physics from Loyola College, and an M.B.A degree from the University of Madras in Madras, India. He graduated with a M.S. degree in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1985. Contact Information: Nari Kannan. Email: nari@appsparq.com Mobile: 925 353 0197. Website: www.appsparq.com View more .

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