The rise of embedded Business Intelligence (BI)

As BI use matures within the organization, the way in which it is being applied is also changing. Organizations are looking for more strategic ways to deliver analytical insight and make sure that the right people have direct access to the information they need. Part of this includes the increasing adoption of embedding analytics within operations. At the same time, organizations are taking advantage of embedded BI to provide customer facing analytics and added services by leveraging the data they collect. Consequently, the way in which data is delivered is evolving. Broader industry trends, such as self-service and data discovery, support this shift as well because the technology available is easily embeddable and analytics are easier to interact with.

These factors, as well as others, are slowly transforming the way BI is being adopted within organizations. Analytics no longer needs to be a separate application but can be accessed within operational systems to help business users gain the visibility they require. Businesses want to have a cohesive view of information. The ability to embed analytics within an application gives them a new way of deploying analytics without limiting who can access data. Better access to data in general, also helps sell its value overall, providing organizations with the basis to justify budgetary allocations to manage their data more effectively.

The reality is that successfully adopting embedded BI within operations requires this added level of data management to ensure that information being accessed is valid and reliable. Otherwise, organizations are stuck with the same information related challenges that exist through the use of spreadsheets.

The bottom line for organizations is that the added focus of software providers on better BI accessibility and increasing governed data access provides a more holistic framework to data access. Being able to embed analytics within daily operations or as part of a customer facing application while taking advantage of the broader capabilities BI vendors now have to offer, also supports better competitive advantage by leveraging integrated technologies. Therefore, when organizations evaluate the benefits of embedding BI within their organizations it is also important to identify how broader BI and data access can benefit end users by making information easier to access and more reliable.

This post was brought to you by IBM for Midsize Business and opinions are my own. To read more on this topic, visit IBM’s Midsize Insider. Dedicated to providing businesses with expertise, solutions and tools that are specific to small and midsized companies, the Midsize Business program provides businesses with the materials and knowledge they need to become engines of a smarter planet.