Information is a common thread for organizations that seek to understand the evolution of ICT in order to improve their productive operations. This article focuses on Business Intelligence, we will delve into how its application becomes the cornerstone of business strategies in organizations to determine the direction to follow and make sound decisions.
While the terms we use to refer to advances in business technology, become a common language to determine operations and processes, do we have clear what is Business Intelligence? We are going to define it in the following way:
It is a business strategy that starts from the conjugation of information, actions, processes and technological tools, aimed at knowing, understanding and predicting the behavior of each of the market players; so that organizations can develop in advance tactics aimed at making decisions about the optimization of resources, continuous process improvement and continuous monitoring to meet their business objectives.
Large technology manufacturers such as Oracle, give us another definition of BI that takes the use of data as the axis of business intelligence: “The term business intelligence refers to the use of data in a company to facilitate decision making. It covers the understanding of the current functioning of the company, as well as the anticipation of future events, with the aim of offering knowledge to support business decisions. ”
Starting from the concept that Business Intelligence introduces in the growth dynamics of organizations, let’s see its components:
- Data Warehouse (DW): It is the electronic data warehouse for organizations. Its reason in the operation of the BI is to store the information that is compiled based on the operation of the business core. Its mission is to ensure a safe, reliable and easy to consult storage through the Essential Data Management.
- On-Line Analytical Processing (OLAP): It is a multidimensional analysis technique, whose mission is to accelerate the query of large volumes of data. Their cubes of information are the basis of consultation for the transversal processes of the organizations represented in the areas of marketing, logistics and finance as the most representative. One of the missions that the OLAP has is to allow quick queries based on the access to the information warehouses of the structured data, constituting a bridge between the warehouse (DW) and the manager (Data Management).
- Data Mining (DM): It combines technology and information under a single process that allows to explore large volumes of data, thus generating patterns on the behavior of the data under the context of the business core of the organizations.
- Data Mining has two natures, a Direct one that seeks to classify and order the data, together with the evaluation of its relevance.
The indirect part of Data Mining is focused on the volumes of information that try to parameterize the data and how to establish routes to describe and visualize them efficiently.
Extract, Transform, Load (ETL): It is a neural process in the management of the BI, in which the methods of: Extraction, Transformation and Loading of the data act as a whole. The ETL connects with different sources of business data management such as ERP’s, CRM, Excel files or any other record that can be loaded.
ETL’s mission is to combine the data that comes from different warehouses, thus supporting the migration of data to the cloud and even to Blockchain structures; also improve the productivity with respect to optimizing time focused on the cleaning and review of data.
It is important to mention that companies to look for a Business Intelligence strategy, must question their needs and objectives, under the parameter of conscious decision making and consistent with the pace of market growth. The questions that all organizations, regardless of their size, should be the following, so that the panorama that leads to the application of BI strategies can be clarified.
- What is the current situation of the company?
- How are decisions made in the organization and what results are they giving?
- Are the decisions that the organization is taking effective?
- What are the best practices to make the organization more competitive?
Four principles of Business Intelligence for business decision making and market forecasts
The Business Intelligence strategy is one of the alternatives in data and business intelligence that organizations increasingly demand; however, its application supposes principles or processes that must be adopted gradually to achieve satisfactory results in its implementation. Let’s see which are the principles that determine the path of success of the BI.
Execution Plan: It is the starting point from which the organizations trace the objectives they want to achieve, therefore, they plan based on their technological tools and the commercial information generated by their activity, what they want to do, where they want to direct their organization and how they should do it.
Scheme of action: It is the route to follow of the execution plan, here we analyze the human and technological tools that will participate in a data management process to focus on the growth and productivity strategies dictated by the management areas of the organizations.
Perspective and forecast: Once the data for information management have been parameterized, the statistics that determine trends in behavior in the market are established. The technological tools that allow this management to be carried out efficiently range from CRMs, ERPs, to the application of innovations in Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain and Big Data.
Detection of deviations in organizational objectives: With the analysis of data that comes from the application of Data Maining and ETL, it is possible to detect how the level of optimization of resources that the organization has (liquidity, human talent and time). , establish a forecast of market behavior to anticipate decision-making that aims to make the organization more competitive in the context of the market in which it operates, review its financial development and establish strategies to strengthen relations with its target audiences.
Big Data and Blockchain, strategic partners of Business Intelligence
Recapitulating the strategic nature of Business Intelligence, we could not miss a high impact issue due to the integration of such powerful partners in information management as Big Data and Blockchain to the principles of BI application.
This ecosystem of processes in data is very attractive, since it allows a symbiosis in which each platform adds its capacity for storage, consultation and efficiency in the management of information of unstructured and structured data. The tour is extensive, but we will discuss the main points in which organizations benefit from an integration of this magnitude.
Speed and reliability in the transfer of data from one environment to another.
Greater transparency is generated in the traceability of the data, on account of the blocks and storage.
It allows the use of new technologies such as those derived from Artificial Intelligence, so that navigation and classification of data records is easier.
It is possible to prevent fraud and attacks on the data of the organizations by the joint sum of the securities of the data blocks, the firewalls that protect the cloud environment in which the Big Data operates and the computer management strategy for the actions of the BI.
It is possible to reduce the duplication of data and errors related to its storage which results in a wrong decision making and inaccuracies for business competitiveness in the market.
Strengthens the growth efforts for organizations, especially in cross-cutting areas such as Marketing, Administration and Finance, Technology, Quality and Processes, Research and Development, among the most outstanding.
The technological path that we cover is more intense as markets become more demanding regarding the competitiveness that they demand from organizations, this is how the strategies promoted by Business Intelligence are the key pieces of the game, since not only do they have The resources also combine them in the search for accurate partnerships for the soundness of business operations, ranging from the eco platform systems to the decision making that determine new beginnings in the business horizon.