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Bringing together analytics and business intelligence to achieve results

Richard Jones Archive

At numerous businesses across a variety of industries, there's been a steady increase in recent years in the use of analytics. More and more, companies are becoming aware of the need for mining, data quality and critical thinking skills that can help them better understand their operations and make vital improvements.

As they go about this process, there's a subtle yet still important distinction that they need to understand - how dedicated are they broadly to the concept of analytics, and to what extent are they more specifically focused on business intelligence? That question may sound murky, as both terms in question are fairly vague, but there's a real line in the sand that needs to be drawn.

"Analytics" is a vast, all-encompassing term. It can apply to really any practice that involves collecting data and analyzing it. BI is a concept that's a little bit more focused. Usually, it entails examining a company's workflows and making improvements to internal practices.

Leadership is key
According to Enterprise Apps Today, there's a movement afoot to advance both analytics and the practice of business intelligence, and it begins with solid leadership. Because so many companies have people in place who care about advancing technologies, the future is bright for the growth of BI.

Quentin Gallivan, chairman and CEO of Pentaho, told the news source that innovation is currently going strong.

"Big Data technologies are advancing at speeds like never before, and the upper right quadrant of the MQ is open territory," said Gallivan. "Vendors need to be nimble with the mindset of relentless innovation balanced with product support."

It's not just tech companies that are embracing data-driven technologies - it's people in leadership positions all across industry. The vendors are constantly putting out new BI solutions, and all different types of corporate leaders are making room in their budgets to buy them.

Analytics keeps growing
The entire field of analytics is a booming one. "Data scientist" is one of the most glamorous jobs of the 21st century. That being the case, it's only natural that BI concurrently grows, according to Malene Haxholdt, global analytics marketing manager at SAS.

"What we're seeing is a market convergence of traditional BI and advanced analytics," Haxholdt told Enterprise Apps Today. "There is still a need to report on information, but what's happening is a recognition that information needs to be more accurate, so analytics are a bigger part of the convergence trend."