Business intelligence strategy guide

Enterprises choose business intelligence (BI) technology to get value from their stored data. In this guide, learn about BI management and strategy.

Enterprises increasingly are turning to business intelligence (BI) technology to analyze the data they have created and stored. The quantity of that data can be so large that sometimes it's referred to as Big Data.

What impels companies to turn to BI technology? What kinds of data do they store, and what do they hope to learn from it? How is BI itself being adapted to new kinds of data, and what new forms do those adaptations take? Learn the answers to these questions and more in this business intelligence management and strategy guide for CIOs.

This guide is part of SearchCIO.com’s CIO Briefings series, which is designed to give IT leaders strategic management and decision-making advice on timely topics.

Table of contents:

Reasons for a business intelligence management plan

Atefeh "Atti" Riazi says she is a big believer in gut instinct. But when it comes to IT and business alignment, she's convinced that intuition must give way to decisions based on business intelligence, predictive analytics in particular.

After all, CIOs have not exactly excelled at predicting the future, Riazi noted, judging from the profession's black eyes over technology spending that failed to deliver an ROI or customer value.

Learn more in “Business intelligence, analytics help CIO challenge collective wisdom.”

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Hard data the backdrop to business intelligence management

Business intelligence initiatives help organizations make sense of myriad data points, turning a mass of database fields into actionable information used to advance the business. However, not every BI strategy is as successful as it could be -- often because it doesn't start with high-quality data.

Inconsistent data can come in many forms. You may have, as is the case for some of our data at Westminster College, data stratums. When you peel back the layers, you discover that it’s possible to identify key moments in the organization’s history based solely on how aspects of the information change over time. In analyzing our fundraising data, we went back 13 years and discovered about four different layers of data. In each layer, data was vastly different as different vice presidents came and went.

Learn more in "BI strategy is nothing without high-quality data."

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Business intelligence management and strategy terms for CIOs

Learn more about specific areas of business intelligence management and strategy:

Business intelligence management evolves to new forms

Business intelligence systems are evolving so rapidly as to be almost unrecognizable. Just a few years ago, BI meant clunky, backward-looking financial analysis systems and interfaces deemed unfriendly by users at large. Improved computing power is increasing by orders of magnitude the amount of data that can be crunched, while the advent of new types of media is changing the kinds of data to be crunched. At the same time, the rise in mobile business computing has begun to alter how BI applications are being delivered.

CIOs forging their BI strategies soon will have to grapple with business intelligence systems that are little more than buzzwords today: social network analysis, organizational network analysis, context-aware computing, even sentiment analysis.

Learn more in “The upcoming revolution in business intelligence systems.”

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What’s on the horizon for business intelligence management

The adoption of mobile business intelligence applications has lagged behind that of other mobile apps. The reasons range from the technical difficulties of delivering interactive reports to small screens and fears about security to showing a return on investment.

As the more format-friendly tablets gain ground, the appetite for mobile BI is expected to rise sharply -- and not just among the iPad-armed executive class. About 70% of 200 IT leaders recently surveyed about mobile BI by independent advisory Dresner Advisory Services LLC expect a quarter of their user base to utilize BI exclusively through mobile devices in two years; 25% expect half of their users to do so.

Learn more in “CIO drives new business model with mobile business intelligence.”

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Enterprise business intelligence quiz for CIOs

Enterprise business intelligence systems and the rise of Big Data are transforming the way CIOs assess their organizations' successes -- and their failures. The onslaught of data has a major upside -- real-time availability of information that can be useful to the business -- but some downsides as well -- including the need for a comprehensive enterprise business intelligence strategy to manage it all.

Are you up-to-date on the newest enterprise business intelligence strategies and challenges? Take our quiz and find out.

Test your BI, Big Data smarts