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Business intelligence can be applied to the following business purposes, in order to drive business value.
Measurement – program that creates a hierarchy of performance metrics (see also Metrics Reference Model) and benchmarking that informs business leaders about progress towards business goals (business process management).
Analytics – program that builds quantitative processes for a business to arrive at optimal decisions and to perform business knowledge discovery. Frequently involves: data mining, process mining, statistical analysis, predictive analytics, predictive modeling, business process modeling, complex event processing and prescriptive analytics.
Reporting/enterprise reporting – program that builds infrastructure for strategic reporting to serve the strategic management of a business, not operational reporting. Frequently involves data visualization, executive information system and OLAP.
Collaboration/collaboration platform – program that gets different areas (both inside and outside the business) to work together through data sharing and electronic data interchange.
Knowledge management – program to make the company data driven through strategies and practices to identify, create, represent, distribute, and enable adoption of insights and experiences that are true business knowledge. Knowledge management leads to learning management and regulatory compliance.
In addition to above, business intelligence also can provide a pro-active approach, such as ALARM function to alert immediately to end-user. There are many types of alerts, for example if some business value exceeds the threshold value the color of that amount in the report will turn RED and the business analyst is alerted. Sometimes an alert mail will be sent to the user as well. This end to end process requires data governance, which should be handled by the expert.
Specific issues or scenarios indicate a BI need:
There are several benefits a BI solution offers to an organization regardless of size:
Get insight into customer behavior: One of the great benefits of business intelligence software is it allows companies to gain visibility into what customers are buying (or not), giving them "the ability to turn this knowledge into additional profit" and retain valuable customers,.
Identify cross-selling and up-selling opportunities: Business intelligence software allows firms to leverage customer data to build, refine and modify predictive models [that help] sales representatives to up-sell and cross-sell products at appropriate customer touch points.