2015 promises to be an exciting year in the world of business intelligence and analytics and it’s the time of year where thought leaders across the industry begin to make their forecasts for the upcoming 12 months. In this article, we round up some of the key business intelligence predictions and analyse how your business may be affected.
Data preparation takes over from big data
The hottest topic of 2014 was undoubtedly the continuing rise of big data. However, according to Prakash Nanduri’s business intelligence predictions, that’s about to change, as data preparation takes centre stage. Nanduri states that the proliferation of ungoverned data will cause a major headache for companies and will consequently lead to an increased focus on data standardisation, governance and preparation.
As a result of this change in focus, Nanduri predicts that the industry will be forced to adapt, and vendors will become more responsive to the data preparation requirements of businesses. This trend forms one of his ‘six business intelligence predictions for 2015’. He foresees a change in the industry from delivering ‘fragmented, point products’ to ‘cohesive platforms built on elastic architectures that can scale and deliver as cloud-based and on premise’.
Data and business strategy align
Businesses of all shapes and sizes are slowly beginning to realise the benefits of data collection and analysis, however, many companies remain unsure as to the best way to use this data. Ray Major indicates that one of his top business intelligence predictions for the upcoming year is that there will be an increased focus on aligning data analytics with business strategy. This will help businesses to extract the greatest utility from their data-related activities and will help to justify the significant costs involved in this kind of activity.
With the rise in big data, businesses are collecting more data than ever before, yet without a clear purpose behind this activity, companies can be left with large volumes of meaningless statistics. Major argues that ‘data analysis for the sake of analysis just gives you more numbers and statistics in different forms, but it really doesn’t drive business value’.
As one of his top business intelligence predictions, Major thinks businesses will begin to sit down and rationalise what data they are collecting – and more importantly why they are collecting it. This will then lay the foundations for a much more robust data analytics strategy that is more closely aligned to the goals and strategy of the business as whole.
Timo Elliott is an innovation evangelist and international conference speaker who has over 23 years of experience working with business intelligence tools. In his ‘7 interesting Big Data and Analytics trends for 2015’, one of his key business intelligence predictions is that analytics tools will become increasingly available across the whole organisation.
Rather than remaining ‘under the control of well-meaning central IT dictatorships’, he believes important decisions surrounding IT spending will begin to further involve business units.
In his business intelligence predictions for 2015, Timo Elliot envisages the further development of what he describes as ‘the community governance of analytics’.
Data integration for SMBs
Another interesting set of business intelligence predictions comes from David Mai, editor at Solutions Review. In his ‘10 Data Integration Predictions for 2015’ he talks about the need for small and medium-sized businesses in particular to focus on better integrating their new and existing systems in the coming year.
At the moment, Mai argues that SMBs are using a large number of different systems for their data-related activities, yet these systems are not designed to work well together and, as a result, data analysis across these multiple sources often proves difficult.
One of Mai’s top business intelligence predictions for 2015, therefore, is that more software vendors will continue to innovate and develop platforms that allow these SMBs to integrate their data sources, without the need for large, experienced IT departments.
Security concerns resurface
Security concerns have always been a factor at the very forefront when it comes to business intelligence – and rightly so. As companies collect and store increasing volumes of data, it is crucial that this information is protected.
For Yan Ness, CEO at Online Tech Inc, security concerns form a crucial component of his business intelligence predictions for 2015. Ness states that although security and privacy have always been key concerns in the industry, they are going to ‘take centre stage in 2015 in a way that has never happened before’.
The reason for the prominence? Ness believes that high profile security leaks throughout 2014, most notably the Sony pictures hacking scandal, will prove to be a catalyst coming into the new year. These high profile attacks have highlighted the issues facing even large organisations when it comes to keeping their data secure. In his business intelligence predictions, Ness states that security and privacy will become a top priority across all industries, not just in industries such as healthcare and government.
Whether these business intelligence predictions are accurate or not, is yet to be seen. However, it is clear that 2015 is going to be a big year for the business intelligence and analytics industry.
So is it time you started to think about improving your business intelligence strategy?
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