26 Aug Business Intelligence Uses
How is Business Intelligence defined?
Business intelligence refers to application, technologies and practices for the gathering, analysis, integration and reporting of business data. Its purpose is to make a company more efficient by supporting smart well-though decisions.
Fundamentally, Business Intelligence systems are DSS – data-driven decision support Systems. Business Intelligence provides past, present and future views of business processes by using data garnered into a data mart or a data warehouse and occasionally from operational data.
What are the benefits of Business Intelligence?
- Reduced labor costs – One of the best benefits of BI is the time and effort that are saved by producing reports for the corporation. It is one of the core reasons that a company decides to implement Business Intelligence. Business Intelligence reduces labor costs by:
- Data collection and aggregation automation
- Report generating automation
- Simple tools for programming new reports
- Reduced training required for creating and maintaining reports
- Make data actionable – A huge problem with organizations the use vast amounts of information is that all employees get all kinds of complex reports. Employees start to feel overwhelmed by the huge amount of data that doesn’t give a clear picture. Business Intelligence makes information actionable by:
- Providing data through unified views where KPIs are assembled and calculated using a central repository of definitions
- Providing up-to-date information in real-time reports
- Allowing users to design reports by themselves and not depend on IT experts
- Making it easy for the user to execute corrective actions
- Letting users share collective data with colleagues
- Showing only relevant user specific data
- Using graphs, charts and gauges for visual representation
- Better decisions – Good decisions can benefit an organization greatly while bad ones cause losses. Business Intelligence helps in the making of better decisions by:
- Providing rich, exact and up-to-date data
- Providing functionality that lets diving into data for further investigation
What is a data warehouse?
A data warehouse is a system used for data analysis and reporting. They are central repositories of integrated data from different sources. Data warehouses store past and present data and are used in the creation of trending reports for corporate executives. Operational systems such as marketing, sales, etc upload data to the data warehouse. This data can then be used for reporting, but may pass through an operational data store for additional operations. There are four different types of systems:
- Data mart
- Online analytical processing (OLAP)
- Online transactional processing (OLTP)
- Predictive analysis
What is ETL?
Extract Transform and Load refers to an operation in database usage and data warehousing that:
- Extracts data from data sources both homogeneous and heterogeneous
- Transforms this data for storing it in a certain format or structure for analysis purpose
- Loads it into the end target which can be a database, operational data store, data mart or a data warehouse
Mondy Holten, SAP BI Consultant
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