Business Intelligence: How to Transform Data into Actionable Business Insights

What is business intelligence (BI)?

Why is business intelligence important?

Performance tracking

Increased efficiency

Problem identification

Customer analysis

Competitor analysis

Trend and pattern recognition

How business intelligence works

Step 1: Data storage

Step 2: Data collection and aggregation

Step 3: Data mining

Step 4. Reporting and visualization

Step 5: Business actions

Key features and capabilities of BI software

  • Extract, transfer, load tools (ETL). ETL features are used to move data from business systems and databases to a data warehouse. These tools extract data and identify changes, then transform and prepare the data for further analysis. Once the data is ready, it’s loaded into a warehouse or other destinations designed for analytical workloads.
  • Data mining. This feature supports the process of analyzing data collected from multiple sources to identify patterns. The main goal of data mining is to reveal trends and systematic relationships between different variables. It can also validate patterns by applying them to new data subsets.
  • Online analytical processing (OLAP). OLAP tools analyze large volumes of multidimensional data from different perspectives through filtering, grouping, planning, and modeling.
  • Reporting. This is the process of generating and providing summarized and structured information to end-users through BI software. BI reports allow businesses to find and share insights, resulting in better data accessibility and a faster response to changes.
  • Visualization. Visualization transforms data into charts, graphs, maps, or other infographics for better interpretation and, as a result, more accurate decision-making.
  • Dashboards. Interactive dashboards display different indicators, analytics metrics, and other role-relevant data on a single screen (see an example below).
Source: https://www.tableau.com/learn/articles/business-intelligence

The bottom line

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