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New Frontiers in Business Intelligence

Nari Kannan

Business Process Intelligence - Inferring the Intelligence!

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Last week I ran across a very interesting and successful company, OpenConnect that seems to have some interesting technology that enables collection and analysis of Business Intelligence automatically - especially relating to Business Processes!

Claims Processing, especially in Healthcare is an inexact science and many BI efforts in this area have to do with following the right Business Process and measuring the efficiency and effectiveness of these processes.

The main problem with collecting some of this BI is the self-reporting nature of some of these processes.

OpenConnect seems to have come up with a better way to do the same thing but without any reporting of BI Metrics explicitly from any of the applications. They 'Infer" the conduct of the business process by sniffing accesses to applications, keystrokes, screen scrapes of mainframe applications, etc.

They reconstruct the way the business process was executed and compare it to the way it ought to be executed. This may mean measuring the time between actual occurrence of Event A compared to the actual occurrence of Event B and comparing it to the IDEAL time between Event A and Event B in an ideal conduct of the business process!

They call this Business Process Discovery!

Very interesting! This is especially useful in cases where processes are not properly documented and explicitly known ahead of time.

OpenConnect's abilities also includes the end users interactions on a website, for example.

They do it using a combination of different things like:

  • Collectors - Collects KeyStrokes and Clicks
  • User Activity Replay - Seeing exactly what users/customers saw and did across systems
  • Converting Keystrokes into Business Events
  • Combining Business Events into Process Intelligence - comparing actual times with ideal times.
  • Dashboards, Reports on Business Process Intelligence so gathered!

Business Process Intelligence is still mainly at its infancy! BI is more mature since quite often it just deals with one monolithic group of data - Sales Data or Financial Data or Manufacturing Data. When you extend BI to business processes, that's when you start realizing the practical problems in collecting the data you need!

OpenConnect seems to have figured out some solutions and considering they have a number of really large clients using them successfully, they should be doing something right!

The so called unconscious inferences can be traced back to the all-preserving memory, which presents us with parallel experiences and hence already knows the consequences of an action. It is not anticipation of the effects; rather, it is the feeling: identical causes, identical effects . . . - Frederick Nietsche

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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