BI IS A PROCESS AND PROVIDES A MAJOR COMPETITIVE DIFFERENTIATOR
No one said it better than a C-level business executive at an Industry presentation:
“I do not want IT solutions to be just about productivity and efficiency gains. If we are not productive and efficient at this point, we are in the wrong business. I need my IT colleagues to be real business partners and bring solutions that will enable our company to win new business, convert more prospects to customers, increase our market share, and get into the new markets. I need IT to be a true business partner, not a cost center.”
Getting better insight from information based on richer data sets, more complex models, or even making the same decisions as everyone else but before everyone else makes them — this is how most advanced enterprises compete in today’s world. Business intelligence tools and technologies form the major components of the foundation that supports and enables such competitive differentiation.
Business Intelligence Is Not Just For Reporting Anymore
Contrary to the common misconception, BI enables more than just reporting and analytics. Leading Analysts like Forrester defines BI as:
“A set of methodologies, processes, architectures, and technologies that transform raw data into meaningful and useful information used to enable more effective strategic, tactical, and operational insights and decision-making.”
While a dashboard can be used as a graphical UI (GUI) component, business activity monitoring (BAM) also captures data and process events (e.g., number of credit applications processed today and number still pending in a queue), correlates and aggregates them into business metrics (e.g., ratios of processed, approved, and rejected applications per hour), and displays the real-time status of the metrics and trailing patterns.
Oracle BI EE is very rich in features and functions and scores very close to the leading BI vendors. The BI suite includes a powerful BI Server with a ROLAP engine and enterprise information integration (EII) technology, qualifying Oracle’s BI suite as a heterogeneous, not just Oracle-centric, BI platform. Even though Oracle continues to support all products it has acquired, Essbase is the key Hyperion product that will receive the most attention and R&D dollars. Essbase continues to be one of the leading OLAP engines on the market and a preferred tool of finance departments all over the world.