Some BI Ideas for 2009

So here we are at the end of 2008. Another amazing year in the area of BI. In the 18 years I have been specialising in this IT sector, I suppose you might wonder what else is there to do here. After all BI is a mature market, indeed many of my clients today could be classified as very mature users of business intelligence (BI). Some are on their second, third or even fourth generation of BI system implementations, with data warehouses and data marts, web enabled ad hoc query, reporting, and OLAP tools already deployed and well established across their user base.

Yet there is plenty more that can be done. A key question is how can companies with mature BI set-ups strengthen and evolve their existing investment? I still see lots of opportunity as we head into 2009.

There are several areas emerging to enhance and build on existing BI investment that can offer more value to a business. These include:

  • Integration of BI with Information Management infrastructure for trusted data
  • Integration of BI with Performance Management software to roll up metrics into higher level KPIs
  • Capturing of additional insight from unstructured content (e.g. customer emails) and from external information on the internet (e.g. about market intelligence and about what people are saying about your products and services)
  • Event driven and on-demand Operational BI – a hugely exciting area for 2009 to continuously monitor operations and deliver right -time BI in the context of process activities for continuous business optimisation
  • Integration of Enterprise Search with BI to open up broader access to intelligence via a search interface
  • Exploitation of appliances for lower total cost of ownership on specific workloads
  • Integration of BI with social software and collaboration workspaces to facilitate sharing and exploitation of knowledge in a collaborative environment. This is particularly relevant for those of you wishing to exploit products IBM Lotus Quickr quickplaces as well as Microsoft SharePoint workspaces. Integrating BI here will become increasingly important in 2009

These are just some of the ideas I will be discussing in the coming year and in a tough economic climate BI has never been more important. I wish all of you the best for the holiday season.


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