Business Intelligence continues to evolve as developers unravel the mysteries of big data via analytics. Meanwhile, BI costs are falling, allowing SMEs to compete with corporate rivals. Here are some other trends we're set to see next year...
LONDON - December 15, 2014.
Big Data analytics firm Tableau Software thinks 2015 will see corporate governance transforming, with organisations aligning their people, processes and technology to better manage their data.
They point out that while the business intelligence landscape has already transformed to self-service data, business governance is yet to catch up and warns that traditional approaches to governance such as locking down all enterprise data won’t work any longer. This shift, they say, will lead businesses to explore what governance means in a world of self-service analytics.
Next year should also see the continuation of social intelligence as a competitive advantage, with businesses increasing spend on the analysis of social data. While social analytics will open the door to more responsive product optimisation, tracking conversations via social media will let firms discover when a topic is beginning to trend and what their customers are saying, in a more integrated manner.
More choice and lower costs in browser-based business data analytics as well as increasing ease of use will expand the reach of essential BI tools so everyone from a salesperson to an operations manager can be a data analyst. Firms keen to ride this revolution in access and availability will increase spend on both BI analysis tools and training to get more of their staff using them, and understanding their findings.
As more people from all types of backgrounds and positions across different industries familiarise themselves with analytics software and processes, so too will communities of their users grow around those products. The inspiration and empowerment these BI tools provide will create fan bases or communities of SME and corporate users, which their developers will subsequently point to as proof of their usability and value when seeking new business from prospective customers.
2015 should also see a move towards the simplification of user access and interfaces, where multiple passwords and overbearing login processes that lead to clunky dashboards are phased out. Moving and managing data should be a secure but simplified process and rapid integration that leverages easily accessible interfaces is going to become standard.
We'll also see the application of cloud analytics to on-site data: where, rather than uploading their data, the cloud will move to work with the company's data on that firm's machines. An extra layer of security can then be achieved for businesses anxious that uploading their secure data to a third party server might compromise it, thus bringing advanced business data processing in-house, via the cloud.
Real time insights from data analysis are going to become part of companies' conversations, reaching new levels of interactivity over and above generic dashboards. Speed-of-thought analytical tools will allow lightning fast data analysis to be mixed with and compared to multiple sources of information - either from within one business or between different businesses, identifying new opportunities.
News sites are going to integrate data analytics into their output more, to quench the public's growing thirst for the answers to big data questions across society, sport and business.
The popularity of stories that provide insights into issues across the gamut of journalism - from 'What’s The Most Common Name in America?' to 'How Many Homeowners Have Paid off Their Mortgages?' - is booming, and media houses that can’t provide their audiences with such content risk losing them to rival outlets who have embraced the analytical tools to source the statistics they need.
Data access and the ability to process it on the road will continue to be a key offering in 2015, with Business Intelligence firms vying to supply services to a workforce that is spending less time in offices. While, mobile data processing is not new, big advances in mobile phone processors and the widening coverage of high speed mobile broadband are allowing real-time communication with the cloud.
The side effect of this migration to mobile on the developers’ sides has been a simplification of access to complex data processing tools and more intuitive interfaces that allow mobile users to operate these systems and view the results easily, without requiring a mouse and keyboard. This is a process that could continue in some even more technologically fantastic ways in 2015, given the impending advent of affordable mobile virtual reality.
Finally, the intuitiveness of the BI processes themselves will evolve to allow users with no scripting ability the opportunity to make very complex requests of the business data they want to analyse, such as advanced prediction and forecasting.
A big move away from programming, towards graphical modelling, will do away with intimidating code altogether (though, of course that option will always be available to those experts who require it), thereby opening up a new era of business information analysis as anyone who seeks answers to big questions posed by big data.