What is Business Intelligence

Business Intelligence

Definition:

Business intelligence or business intelligence (BI) represents the tools and systems that play a key role in the strategic planning process within a corporation. These BI systems allow a company to collect, store, access and analyze corporate data to aid in decision making. Overall, these systems will guide business intelligence in the areas of customer profiling, customer service, market research, market segmentation, product profitability, statistical analysis, and inventory and distribution analysis, to name a few.

Business Intelligence Software

Most companies collect a lot of data from their business operations. In order not to lose sight of this information, a company should use a wide range of software programs, such as Excel, Access, and different database applications for various departments throughout its organization. The use of various software programs makes it difficult to retrieve information in a timely manner and carry out data analysis. Therefore, Business Intelligence programs are used, which bring together all the others and facilitate the task.

BI programs can also incorporate advanced forms of analytics, such as data mining, predictive analytics, text mining, statistical analysis, and big data analysis. In many cases, however, advanced analytics projects are run and managed by independent teams of data scientists, statisticians, predictive modelers, and other skilled analytics professionals, while BI teams oversee the analysis of the simplest business and query data.

Databases in Business Intelligence

Business intelligence databaseBusiness intelligence data is typically stored in a data warehouse that contains subsets of a company’s information. In addition, Hadoop systems are increasingly used within BI architectures as repositories or landing pads for BI data and analytics, especially for unstructured data, files, sensor data, and other types of large volumes of log data. Before being used in BI applications, raw data from different source systems must be integrated, consolidated and cleaned by integrating quality data and tools to ensure that users are analyzing accurate and consistent information.

Business intelligence and Big Data

Big Data is used more widely today with business intelligence and analytics applications. A number of BI vendors have mobilized to launch new tools that support Hadoop. For example, SAP offers connectors for Hadoop for SAP BI and Business Objects. According to EnterpriseAppsToday, BI vendor support for big data is typically in at least one of two ways:

  • Connector integration that makes it easier to move Hadoop data into your tools.
  • Data visualization tools that make it easier to analyze Hadoop data.

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