Cloud-based Business Intelligence is rapidly gaining traction as a deployment option. As with enterprise applications in general, the logic of a reduced IT footprint and ‘Software as a Service’ business model is compelling, especially for mid-sized businesses. But Cloud BI has another compelling advantage—one that isn’t so immediately apparent.
Which is that Cloud BI is fast. Blindingly fast. Fast at generating results, fast when it comes to being implemented, and fast when it comes to turning a need for answers into hard, solid facts.
Which means that thanks to Cloud BI, your business also accelerates. With cutting-edge insights from reports, queries and dashboards delivered faster than ever before.
Let’s take a look.
Cloud BI: fast to implement
Traditional on-premise Business Intelligence projects are lengthy affairs—timescales of 12 to 18 months are not uncommon. Plus, of course, there’s often additional hardware to buy, and middleware to install in addition to the core Business Intelligence tool chosen.
Cloud BI projects are much, much quicker. In large part, because the installation is in the Cloud, implementation is carried out by the Cloud BI vendor’s own team—who are, of course, very familiar with the product, and accustomed to working with it.
At Matillion, for instance, we routinely implement our own Cloud BI solution in eight to ten weeks, from signed purchase order to first reports being run.
Meaning that our customers can benefit from cutting-edge Cloud BI while traditional on-premise projects are still getting up to speed.
Cloud BI: fast reporting
Fairly obviously Cloud BI runs in the Cloud. But think about what that means: fast, scalable server technology, abundantly available—and in terms of raw computing horsepower, available far more cheaply than on-premise IT capacity.
The first advantage this brings is your own data warehouse, located in the Cloud. Running Cloud BI queries and reports against a data warehouse—which has been optimised for just this task—is far quicker than running them against an ERP database. Much, much quicker.
The second advantage that Cloud BI technology delivers is that it’s possible to run reports and queries ‘in memory’, rather than sequentially accessing sectors on a disk-based database.
In-memory analytics is again much, much faster than traditional technologies, meaning not only that it’s possible to get reports and queries run more quickly, but that it’s also possible to run many more of them, without overloading the business’s computing resources.
Again, the contrast between Cloud BI and traditional on-premise Business Intelligence is telling: not only faster answers, but more answers—without slowing down other on-premise line-of-business applications such as ERP.
Cloud BI: fast time-to-answer
Getting reports run, though, is only part of the story. In many businesses, a bigger challenge is often getting the requisite report code written in the first place.
Simply put, IT report-writing resource is often a scarce commodity, leading to report requests sitting endlessly in a queue—a queue that some reports somehow never seem to reach the top of.
With Cloud BI, that problem largely disappears. To be sure, IT resource can be still involved. But from the point of view of end users, the difference between Cloud BI and traditional on-premise Business Intelligence is self-serve reporting.
That’s right: users can create their own reports, using simple point-and-click tools.
At a stroke, the long wait for new reports to be authorised and coded simply vanishes—meaning that the all-important ‘time-to-insight’ shrinks to a handful of minutes.
Cloud BI: faster, better—and on-demand
In today’s business world, Business Intelligence isn’t really an option. The insights and reporting discipline that Business Intelligence delivers make a huge difference to performance.
And the cost of accessing that accelerated performance is surprisingly affordable.
Because unlike traditional on-premise Business Intelligence solutions, Cloud BI is purchased as a service. There’s a small upfront implementation fee, after which businesses simply subscribe to Cloud BI on a monthly basis.
Want to know more? Download one of our free e-books, or read our customer case studies.
To find out more about the benefits that Cloud BI can bring to your business, download our free guide below