With more and more data at our fingertips, it’s getting harder to focus on the information relevant to our problems and present it in an actionable way. That’s what business intelligence is all about.
BI tools make it simpler to corral the right data and visualize it in ways that enable us to understand what it means. But how simple that process gets, and how you can visualize the data depends on the tool: Picking the right one for your needs becomes important.
What is business intelligence software?
Business Intelligence (BI) software is a set of tools that companies use to retrieve, analyze, and transform data into useful business information, typically in easy-to-read visualizations such as tables, charts, and dashboards. . Examples of business intelligence tools include data visualization, data warehouses, interactive dashboards, and reporting tools. Unlike competitive intelligence which analyzes data from external sources, a BI application extracts internal data produced by the business into an analytics platform to better understand how different parts of the business influence each other.
As big data – the trend for businesses to collect, store, and mine their business data – has grown in importance, so has the popularity of BI software. Businesses generate, track and compile business data on a scale never seen before. And the ability to integrate cloud software directly with proprietary systems has further increased the need to combine multiple data sources and leverage data preparation tools. But all of this data is nothing if we can’t understand it and use it to improve business results.
To make informed decisions, companies must base their decisions on evidence. The mountains of data that businesses and their customers produce contain evidence of buying habits and market trends. By aggregating, standardizing, and analyzing this data, businesses can better understand their customers, better predict revenue growth, and better guard against business pitfalls.
Business Intelligence has traditionally taken the form of quarterly or annual reports that report on a defined set of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), but today’s business intelligence software tools operate continuously and at high speed. scaled down. This information can help a business choose a course of action in minutes.
BI software interprets a multitude of quantifiable customer and business actions and returns pattern-based queries in the data. BI comes in many forms and covers many types of technologies. This guide compares the leading business intelligence software vendors, details the three main steps that data needs to take to deliver business intelligence, and provides BI purchasing considerations for businesses of different sizes.
Why use business intelligence tools?
For starters, data discovery, once limited to the expertise of advanced analytics specialists, is now something anyone can do with these tools. And not just that, these tools give you the information you need to achieve goals like growing, solving urgent problems, collecting all your data in one place, predicting future results, and more.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the 7 best business intelligence tools in 2022, and hopefully put you on the right path to selecting a tool that’s right for your business.
1. SAP Business Objects
SAP Business Objects is business intelligence software that offers comprehensive reporting, analysis, and interactive data visualization. The platform is heavily focused on categories like customer experience (CX) and CRM, digital supply chain, ERP, etc. What’s really great about this platform are the role-based, self-service dashboards it offers, allowing users to build their own dashboards and apps. SAP is robust software for all roles (IT, end use and administration) and offers tons of functionality on one platform. However, the complexity of the product drives up the price, so be prepared for that.
Datapine is an all-in-one business intelligence platform that facilitates the complex process of data analysis, even for non-technical users. Using a comprehensive self-service analytics approach, the datapine solution enables data analysts and business users to easily integrate different data sources, perform advanced data analysis, build interactive business dashboards and generate actionable business information.
3. SAS Visual Analytics
The SAS version of BI is your visual analysis tool, delivered through your microservices and cloud-based SAS Viya platform. Its goal is to automatically highlight key relationships in data: the latest version adds automated suggestions for relevant factors, as well as information expressed through visualizations and natural language. Other features include sentiment analysis to extract data from social media and other text, automatic graph generation, self-service mapping, and data preparation. Deployment can be on-premises, in public or private clouds, or on the Cloud Foundry platform as a service.
- Target audience: large business users
- Notable Features: Automated Analysis Features
- Prices: on request
MicroStrategy is an enterprise business intelligence tool that delivers powerful (and high-speed) data analytics and dashboards, cloud solutions, and hyper-intelligence. With this solution, users can identify trends, recognize new opportunities, improve productivity, etc. Users can also connect to one or more sources, whether the incoming data is from a spreadsheet, cloud-based data software, or an enterprise. It is accessible from your office or via your mobile phone. Installation, however, can involve multiple parties and a fairly extensive knowledge of the application to get you started.
Sisense’s BI software stack covers everything from database and ETL to analytics and visualization, and claims that its on-chip database engine is even faster than databases. He is best known for the uses of BI on board. The latest version adds new machine learning capabilities. Sisense is available on premises or in the cloud. There are solutions for finance, marketing, sales, HR, and IT, as well as customer service, operations, and logistics. Sisense also makes it possible to offer analysis tools to users outside the company by integrating them into Web applications. Sisense acquired Periscope Data in September 2019 and is in the process of integrating the advanced analytics capabilities acquired through the acquisition.
- Target audience: usually SMEs
- Notable Features: Fully web-based client, including data preparation
- Pricing: on demand, based on an annual software and service fee
6. Yellowfin BI
Yellowfin BI is an end-to-end business intelligence tool and analytics platform that combines visualization, machine learning, and collaboration. You can also easily filter tons of data with intuitive filtering (e.g. checkboxes and radio buttons), as well as open panels anywhere (thanks to the flexibility of this tool in terms of accessibility (mobile, website, etc. .) What’s great about this BI is that you can easily take your dashboards and visualizations to the next level using a no-code or low-code development environment.
7. Zoho Analytics
Zoho Analytics is an excellent BI tool for detailed data analysis and reporting. This business intelligence tool has automatic data synchronization and can be scheduled periodically. You can easily create a connector using the integration APIs. Mix and match data from different sources and create meaningful reports. With a simple editor, create custom dashboards and reports that allow you to drill down on important details. It also offers a unique comment section in the sharing options, which is great for collaboration purposes.
Business Intelligence tools are very versatile and provide you with a lot of useful information about the performance of your business and your destination. However, while it is great at collecting / collecting data from various sources and helping you understand it, it doesn’t do much in terms of collecting data directly from your customers. So why not go further?
Voice of the Customer (VoC) is an essential factor not only in increasing your profits (as we mentioned above), but also in creating a sense of loyalty among your customers and appreciating your efforts to provide them with a meaningful online experience. This, my friends, is the true source of success.
Is Excel a business intelligence tool?
While it isn’t the only program to offer formulas and pivot tables regarding business intelligence, Excel is still one of the most commonly used BI tools
How is business intelligence used and what tools are used?
Typically used for more straightforward querying and reporting of business data, business intelligence tools can combine a broad set of data analysis applications, including ad-hoc analysis and querying, enterprise reporting, online analytical processing (OLAP), mobile BI, real-time BI, operational BI, cloud and software as a service BI, open-source BI, collaborative BI and location intelligence.