Business intelligence (BI) has become big business, with companies across the globe utilising the technology to get more insights from their data. As the industry evolves, 2016 looks set to become a year when information becomes more on-demand than ever before, with executives able to get their hands on real-time data at the click of a button.
One prediction for 2016 is that companies, particularly start-ups, will continue to be extremely innovative when it comes to developing new BI tools. Modern technology means that traditional data warehousing is no longer required, while cloud architecture enables all manner of inventive additions to BI. It is becoming increasingly important for firms to adapt to these new tools or face the risk of becoming outdated and unable to remain competitive in their chosen field.
Data preparation will become a critical and mandatory capability for firms rather than relying on third parties to conduct this work, as so often happened in the past. Experts will now be required on site and within a business itself so that data can be transformed on demand. Data professionals will be tasked with customer targeting, risk analysis, marketing, sales operations and security monitoring. Businesses failing to adapt to the new BI models could expect to experience large data blunders, quality errors and the misclassification of data.
During 2016, it is also expected that the focus will shift from the data itself to extracting and using the information; for example, although sensor data is often gathered by companies, it is increasingly realised that although abundant, it needs a lot of cleaning up before it can be used and is for the most part useless. Sensor data is cryptic by nature, which makes it harder to put it to any real use. The increasing awareness about information importance means that more companies will focus on gathering the right data rather than just any data. Data steams will be cleaned in real time, providing quick insights and information that is valuable and relevant, with any superfluous information discarded.
Finally, it is predicted that new solutions will have scalability and security built in from the outset. In the past, data silos on desktops created major scalability challenges, not to mention security risks. A lack of technology meant business teams had to utilise distributed desktop BI solutions, leaving IT teams to add security layers around users. This is set to change in 2016, with such features incorporated from the start.
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