Why Business Intelligence?

What is Business Intelligence?

In a 1958 article, IBM researcher Hans Peter Luhn used the term business intelligence. He defined intelligence as: “the ability to apprehend the interrelationships of presented facts in such a way as to guide action towards a desired goal.”

Business Intelligence is a set of techniques and tools which analyzes external and internal data available to an organization.  Business Intelligence is a larger term consisting of Datawarehousing as well as techniques and tools for analyzing Data e.g. for a large retailer having multiple branches across different regions around the world there is a need to find exact inventory, sales, costs etc. with precision.

Why do we need it? In the everyday world where the C-level executives struggle with quality information there is a need and demand for accurate overall picture of the companies or businesses. How do they find out which product or region or sales team is the highest performer and which is not?  By using Business Intelligence tools and techniques they can precisely find out where their strengths are and what are the areas of improvement.

Some of the leading Software packages for Business Intelligence are:

  • Cognos
  • Business Objects
  • SAP BW
  • Hyperion
  • Microsoft Solutions
  • OBIEE

The major vendors are SAP(owns Business Objects), Oracle(OBIEE), IBM(Cognos). There is an enormous scope to improve one’s bottom line by using Business Intelligence.

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