The future of business intelligence: It is about interaction rather than visuals
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The future of business intelligence: It is about interaction rather than visuals

As we approach the end of 2016, we can call the year 2016 “Transformation Year for Business Intelligence Products Suite”.

The year 2016 saw BI develop from an end-user perspective. The rise of self-service analytics, mobile analytics, use of HTML5, and integration of dashboard software changed the way information is accessed by the end-user.

Improved data processing performance, machine learning, cognitive computing, elastic cloud architecture, and the internet of things (IoT) is changing the way data is analyzed and business insights are derived.

A steep drop in demand for traditional BI platforms gave way to rising demand for cloud-based BI deployments on platforms enabled by Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services. According to IDC, in 2016, organizations investing in cloud-based BI technology will grow 4.5x as compared to on-premises solutions. This will enable anywhere, anytime access to information for more organizations in future.

The trend is clearly towards the demand for easier and more accessible ways of accessing data-driven insights by the end-users to drive business value. As per Gartner, “The BI&A market is in the final stages of a multiyear shift from IT-led, system-of-record reporting to pervasive, business-led, self-service analytics. Organizations will continue to transition to easy-to-use, fast, agile, and trusted modern BI&A platforms deployed across the enterprise to create business value from deeper insights into diverse data sources.”

One of the crucial developments that will happen in this direction, is innovations in terms BI user interface. As demand for seamless interaction and communication gain momentum, it will also affect BI and its end-users. Going forward, it will not be about just story telling using numbers, or about intuitive dashboards or pretty visuals. It will be about end-users interacting with numbers and information on a real-time basis in terms of touch and feel, communication, visual aid, and voice.

One of the most popular ways end-users will interact with machines is the speech. Advanced voice recognition capabilities and cognitive computing enabled by Microsoft Cortana, Google Speech, and Amazon Alexa enable people to interact with their devices using voice. These can be easily integrated into a BI system to make its interface more intuitive and voice-enabled. This will enable business users to engage and access any information they need by simply talking to their devices and requesting for specific answers. Voice-enabled BI system will enable seamless interaction of end-users with their organizational data and make decisions instantly.

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Anees Merchant
Anees Merchant
"Anees leads the Applied AI and Digital business and brings over 23 years of experience to Course5 Intelligence Pvt. Ltd. He has worked with numerous...
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