Four Trends to Impact BI and Analytics


By Samuel Greengard 

CIOs face no shortage of business and IT challenges—and things aren't getting any simpler. But, at the end of the workday, virtually every enterprise initiative spins a tight orbit around business intelligence and analytics. A new Gartner report says that four trends will shape the future of BI and analytics over the next several years.

Trend #1: By 2015, the majority of BI vendors will make data discovery their prime BI platform offering, shifting the BI emphasis from reporting-centric to analysis-centric. Gartner says only 30 percent of businesspeople have direct access to BI and analytics today but the figure will grow as data discovery takes hold. "BI leaders should scrutinize the road maps of both data discovery and IT-centric vendors to determine their suitability to meet growing business user and enterprise requirements," notes Roy Schulte, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner.

Trend #2: By 2017, more than 50 percent of analytics implementations will make use of event data streams generated from instrumented machines, applications and individuals. As sensors are embedded in machines, devices and other systems, BI and analytics will shift from a conventional approach to a more autonomous model that provides insights and inferences quickly. It's crucial, Schulte says, to "ensure that the data collected from IT systems, applications, devices and users is maximized with equal consideration for performance implications and probable future business relevance."

Trend #3: By 2017, analytic applications offered by software vendors will be indistinguishable from analytic applications offered by service providers. Organizations evaluating software vendors will increasingly find a SaaS version of packaged applications. The similarity of product concepts will put the spotlight on the domain expertise embedded into the application. The upshot: end-users will have a significantly wider variety of possible providers to evaluate.

Trend #4: Until 2016, big data confusion will constrain spending on BI and analytics. Only about 30 percent of organizations have invested in big data and only 8 percent have reached a production state for these initiatives. The market will expand significantly when the gap between big data technology and business cases narrows, Gartner notes. However, it also points out that as big data matures and more packaged intellectual property becomes available, big data analytics will become more relevant, mainstream and, ultimately, hugely disruptive.

Of these four trends, the first is the most immediate: are your vendors prepared to meet your need for analysis-centric BI?      

About the Author

Samuel Greengard is a contributing writer for CIO Insight.


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