Today’s CIOs face increased scrutiny of the expense and management of their resources–technologies, processes and people. The mandate to align and deliver agile operational support to the business is as intense as any time in the past 20 years. Failure to succeed often translates into the threat of being outsourced or hosted. CIOs continue to be excluded from the decision-making table, even though everyone recognizes IT’s integral role in every part of the business.
Technologists use the term business intelligence (often shortened as BI) to encompass not only analytics–the use of data to analyze, forecast, predict, optimize, and so on–but also the processes and technologies used for collecting, managing, and reporting decision-oriented data. BI usually consists of two major types of activities: reporting and analytics. Reporting is desirable and important, but analytics–the use of sophisticated quantitative tools to model, predict, and optimize business processes–can provide substantial competitive advantage.
“The ability to learn faster than your
competitors may be the only sustainable
Arie de Geus
“The Living Company,” 1997