bright ideas

Big data presents big opportunities

Business Intelligence

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08 Jul 2015

Business Intelligence

The CIO 100 Top 10 Trends of 2015 says that CIOs are increasingly focused on tapping the value of the insights available from the vast amounts of information from structured and unstructured data, using advanced, agile analytics.

But exactly how do we get those insights?

Research shows that companies that excel at data-driven decision making offer better customer experiences and significantly outperform their competitors – and that this gap continues to widen over time.

If your organisation is like most, it’s suffering from siloed data management and systems, and doesn’t have a unified view of the data needed to support effective analytics. At the same time, the business is pressuring you for a rapid return on investment in this area, and it’s not happening fast enough. Big data presents big opportunities, but demands a more robust and strategic approach to information architecture to unlock those opportunities.

As a leading technology consultancy we’ve recognised this need in the market and have recently partnered with Birst to bring an exciting new business intelligence and data analytics platform to our New Zealand shores.

The potential for cloud-based solutions in the business intelligence area is yet another example of the disruption brought on by the Cloud. Applying the benefits of the cloud to analytics offers the same agility, innovation and cost advantages, while enabling organisations to push real-time information throughout their business in a tightly governed, access-controlled way. We see that access to a sophisticated enterprise-grade analytics via a range of cloud delivery mechanisms is a potential game changer for many businesses, and we are excited about the opportunities our partnership with Birst brings for our clients..

The changing landscape

The data analytics landscape has changed drastically in recent years, driven by user frustration with long wait times and lack of access to data. Your organisation, like many others, may have based its business intelligence and analytics systems around a centralised, IT-dominated model. But data analysis also occurs throughout the enterprise, resulting in disjointed data.

Birst and Gartner: The pioneering challenger

According to Gartner, the BI and analytics platform market is undergoing a fundamental shift. In the latest Magic Quadrant for Business Intelligence and Analytics Platforms, Gartner writes how “the ability to bridge decentralised business-user-led analytics deployments with those centralised to serve the enterprise will be a crucial ongoing challenge for IT and BI vendors”.

Gartner positions Birst in the Challengers quadrant, recognising their pioneering vision in Cloud BI. Birst’s patented 2-tier analytics technology enables centralised and decentralised teams to work collaboratively by unifying IT-managed enterprise data with user-generated data, then automating the process of refining and preparing a single view of data, adding a BI layer for business users’ analytics needs. All of which occurs in a highly governed access environment.

Birst and Tableau: A partnership to end analytical silos

Birst recently announced its exciting partnership with Tableau. Visual discovery tools such as Tableau have transformed the way we think about analytics and has given rise to further popularity amongst business users. But while visual discovery tools can help people explore information more easily, they can also introduce challenges for IT and business leaders. The reality is that the proliferation of desktop-based discovery tools inside an organisation brings with it a greater risk of analytical silos because they allow users to work with their own individual data extracts, each of which contain inconsistent business rules and definitions.

This is an exciting partnership for a number of reasons:

  • Birst continues to deliver on their vision for 2-tier analytics. The integration with Tableau helps organisations satisfy business users’ growing demand for discovery capabilities and less restricted access to information without sacrificing the governance that allows people to trust their data.
  • They’re giving people choice. Birst acknowledges that different people have different analytical needs. This unique collaboration allows people to use their preferred front end according to their requirements.
  • Yet again, the Cloud makes for strange bed-fellows. Two forward-thinking companies, typically perceived as competitors, forming an alliance to disrupt the established business models and applications. They both recognise they are way more complimentary than competitive and came together to develop this product integration, delivering immense value for customers.

These are exciting times, with exciting new technologies and exciting possibilities. At ViFX we’re feeling extremely energised by the opportunities that present themselves in the market today, and we’re looking forward to assisting our clients to envision the future of IT and business intelligence in their organisations.

Come along to our Data Wrangling in the Enterprise lunch seminar

If you would like to learn more about Birst and how you can empower your business users with information and insights while still holding centralised control over your data, come along to the next seminar in our Lunch & Learn Series - Data Wrangling in the Enterprise.

When: 12:00 - 1:30pm, Wednesday 29th July 2015
Where: ViFX Office, Level 7, 57 Fort Street, Auckland
What: Lunch, presentation, Q&A

Register here

Scott Pedersen

Author: Scott Pedersen

Scott is a consulting analyst focused on data warehousing and analytics, with a particular interest in helping businesses leverage cloud business intelligence.

08 July 2015 / 0 Comments