Business intelligence (BI) encompasses a wide range of applications and technologies useful for gathering, storing, analyzing and providing access to data. The overarching goal of strategic business intelligence planning is to help enterprise CIOs make faster, more informed business decisions. And now that this data can be taken "on the road" via mobile devices, CIOs are looking to put mobile BI in the palms of their users' hands -- literally.
Mobile business intelligence relies upon software that extends desktop business intelligence applications for use on smartphones and tablets. Mobile BI allows enterprise users to access reports on the fly and make decisions in real time. In this guide, we make a business case for BI in a mobile future -- make that the mobile present -- by examining potential management pitfalls and providing examples of real-life mobile BI implementations.
This CIO Essential Guide on mobile business intelligence is part of the CIO Briefings series, which is designed to give IT leaders strategic management and decision-making advice on timely topics.
1MOBILE BI STRATEGY-
Making the business case for mobile BI
Business leaders are aware that the mobile future has arrived and, as such, strategic business intelligence must migrate to smart devices. So guess whose job it is to tie together business intelligence and mobility? It's not enough for CIOs just to think about mobile BI -- the time to act is now. The following news and tips make the case for mobile BI in the enterprise: Read up so you don't fall behind.
As CIOs begin to implement mobile-first strategies, it only makes sense to do the same with business intelligence products and tools. In this CIO Matters column, Western Governors University CIO Niel Nickolaisen shares three crucial questions to ask when kicking off any mobile project. Continue Reading
When talking about starting a mobile BI initiative, companies should focus on building the business case. In doing so, organizations must look at whether mobile apps could offer them additional business opportunities, rather than simply considering the look and feel of these tools. Continue Reading
Executives are falling hard for mobile technology, but it can be difficult to justify the cost. Forming a solid business case for a mobile BI program means concretely demonstrating both the potential cost and the potential business value. Selling mobile BI may require a broader mobility plan that will eventually accommodate more use cases. Continue Reading
BI strategies are mutating at warp speed in the enterprise sphere as mobile-first and mobile-only approaches become more widely accepted. In this news story, learn how Heath R. Byrd, until recently CIO at Sonic Automotive Inc., extended the reach of BI to mobile devices. Continue Reading
Many organizations have hit the ground running with mobile BI applications, bringing business intelligence to new users and a wider range of use cases. In this piece, leading companies across a wide range of industries show us just how much mobile business intelligence tools have to offer. Continue Reading
To accommodate mobile business applications IT departments must stay on top of infrastructure, data management and security concerns. Inaccurate data has the potential to create serious damage and bring your own device creates new opportunities for hackers. Continue Reading
BI trends for a mobile future
Mobility is a top concern for enterprise IT leaders on the user, customer and consumer levels. The videos in this section examine how mobile technologies influence business intelligence priorities, data analytics, corporate collaboration and more.
Claudia Imhoff, president and founder of Intelligent Solutions Inc., discusses the potential business gains to be had by combining collaborative technologies and mobile BI. There are many challenges and technical considerations to address, and Imhoff advises businesses to proceed slowly to ensure success.
Timothy Leonard, chief technology officer for U.S. Xpress Inc., explains how his company is using big data analytics and the real-time reporting capabilities of mobile BI applications to take advantage of the high volumes of sensor data generated by the company's trucks.
Next-generation business intelligence requires getting growing amounts of data under control and delivering the right information proactively to users, according to a panel of experts at a CIOsynergy conference. Watch the panel discussion to learn more about the future of BI.
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3BI PROS AND CONS-
The benefits and pitfalls of mobile BI
With executives taking their business on the road more frequently, it's crucial that they have access to the data they need at all times, from any location, in order to make real-time decisions. While this is appealing on the executive level, it also poses security and other troubles for IT departments looking to provide this level of access. In this section, learn the benefits and pitfalls of mobile BI.
After email, business intelligence is the most sought-after application for mobile devices according to research conducted by Howard Dresner, chief research officer at Dresner Advisory Services LLC. In this podcast with SearchCIO-Midmarket, Dresner discusses the major obstacles inherent in launching mobile BI. Continue Reading
There are several hurdles to clear before an organization can realize the benefits of mobile BI. Data delivery, unified data and other BI essentials all become more difficult to secure in a mobile environment. Here's advice that can help. Continue Reading
Mobile BI and advanced analytics are critical to keeping Sonic Automotive Inc. one step ahead of the competition. Here, CIO Heath R. Byrd explains how putting data in the hands of managers and sales associates increases user efficiency and boosts customer service. Continue Reading
Although there has been increasingly rapid growth in the use of mobile devices and business applications in the workplace, it's unlikely they'll serve as an all-out replacement for PCs anytime soon. Continue Reading
Business leaders want to keep information and the ability to make decisions at their fingertips -- literally. In this story, we look at how CIOs can leverage mobile consumerization trends and application strategies to meet users wherever they are. Continue Reading
With mountains of location-tagged information available, businesses are facing new business intelligence opportunities. But to use location intelligence effectively, companies need a clear plan. Continue Reading
In order to be successful with mobile BI, organizations need to focus on the technical side of things, especially ensuring that a solid information management program is supporting the data provided to mobile devices. Without the proper support, mobile will just end up making bad data look good. Continue Reading
In order to succeed with enterprise mobility, organizations need solid mobile-app-management plans. Without sufficient mobile security measures and data usage policies, mobile applications can become more of a problem than a solution. Continue Reading
Must-know terms before diving into mobile BI
Before walking the mobile BI walk, make sure you can talk the BI talk. Learn these terms to better understand business intelligence on all levels.
5MANAGING MOBILE BI-
Launch and maintain your mobile BI program
Once IT leaders get over the initial speed bumps in a mobile BI implementation, efforts turn toward launching programs, teaching enterprise users the ins and outs of BI on the go, and fine-tuning mobile efforts. In the following pieces, learn how industry-leading CIOs and IT executives are overseeing strategic mobile BI in their organizations.
OFS Brands Application Manager Tim Hopper understands the need for mobile BI and its benefits. In this story, Hopper explains why and how the national furniture supplier deployed WebFOCUS, a mobile BI product from Information Builders Inc., to the company's users. Continue Reading
Assuming companies have a mobile BI strategy in place, what are the next steps? In this podcast interview, Howard Dresner, chief research officer at Dresner Advisory Services LLC, provides specifics around building a mobile BI strategy and launching a program. Continue Reading
The increasing importance of mobile BI applications is creating new design challenges for business intelligence teams. Fitting functionality into limited screen real estate is key. Get expert advice on how to overcome those challenges. Continue Reading
HTML5 offers a way for development teams to accommodate the wide array of devices and software being developed for mobile BI applications. Although there are some tradeoffs, HTML5 has a lot of potential to help organizations deal with the difficulties that come with bring-your-own-device initiatives. Continue Reading
With mobile BI applications, a user-friendly interface can only get an organization so far. It is critical to ensure that the back end can handle the processing load and get users the data they need with the speed that mobile is meant to deliver. Continue Reading
Designing mobile BI dashboards is a tall task. There's a difficult balance to strike between getting the correct look and feel for mobile while also delivering all of the functionality that users expect. Continue Reading
Financial analysts can save time and money by using mobile business applications and BI tools. These on-the-go analysis capabilities allow executives to access and use powerful information wherever business takes them. Continue Reading
Mobile BI strategy techniques and practices for CIOs
Mobility and business intelligence are two hot topics in today's IT departments. Put them together -- as in mobile BI -- and you've got a pressing IT concern that will only continue to grow in the years ahead. Managing a mobile BI strategy isn't easy, and many IT departments have learned that the hard way. Has your IT department been keeping up? Take our mobile BI strategy quiz and test your knowledge.TEST YOUR MOBILE BI IQ