BI and Analytics in 2014

It’s become a tradition at the end of the year for bloggers and industry pundits to make predictions about their fields of interest, and business intelligence is not spared this annual ritual. While I’ve avoided (or forgotten) making my own predictions, it seems that the future always comes up when I’m speaking at an event. People want to know what’s coming so they can prepare.

Four Areas to Explore

With the PASS BA conference coming up in May in San Jose, the question of future direction will certainly come up again. The field of Business Intelligence is undergoing a shift in how it’s delivered to users and the way it’s developed. After a period of having established common data architectures and practices, including Star Schema models, ETL processes, and cubes for what-if analysis, we are seeing new technologies driving us in different directions. In my opinion BI Architects and Practitioners should start thinking about the following:

1 – Adding predictive analytics to BI teams to get even more value from their data.

2 – Look into data virtualization for some reporting solutions.  This can greatly reduce the time and cost of ETL development.

3 – Consider putting some data in the cloud, when it makes sense.

4 – Make Excel a centerpiece of your designs. If you’re like a lot of BI Architects then you’ve been trying to displace Excel for years, but now with so much BI functionality, it’s worth keeping.

Take the time to learn more about these topics and find out how they fit into you architecture’s future.  These topics will be covered in multiple sessions at the PASS BA Conference.

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