The market for business intelligence (BI) and analytics software is worth billions of pounds a year
Richard Deas, director at niche IT recruiters Search BI, looks at how technologies such as Agile BI are fast becoming the systems of choice for SMEs.
As large legacy IT systems become increasing out-dated, we are seeing the rapid rise and adoption of advanced, highly flexible BI software technologies that help businesses define their growth strategies and boost the efficiency and effectiveness of intelligence and data gathering and forecasting. Demand is being driven by business executives who need to have quick and easy access to management information wherever they are on a range of different devices, from laptops to smartphones.
BI tools are recognised for their ability to operate in real-time and give users the most up-to-date data to avoid process delays, while improving market response and decision-making.
Agile BI takes this a stage further, offering an approach to business intelligence, which incorporates Agile software development methodologies to accelerate and improve the outcomes of BI initiatives. The software provides flexibility by accelerating the time taken to deliver value with BI projects, and can include technology deployment options such as self-service BI, cloud-based BI, and data discovery dashboards that enable users to begin working with data more rapidly and adjust to changing needs.
Technologies such as QlikView and associated Agile BI tools including Tableau, deliver a better user experience alongside the benefits provided by easy-to-implement and cost effective solutions. They can be integrated as part of an overall IT strategy in a matter of months rather than years, and have the benefit of ‘in memory data’, ensuring that all information is quickly accessible (via the cloud) rather than being stored on servers.
BI and analytics extract important information from an organisation’s data, thereby enhancing the business operations by analysing the current and future course of actions to bolster strategic decision-making. It also heightens the visibility of the business processes (and delivers ubiquitous solutions) that play seminal roles in almost all industry sectors.
As the technologies evolve, BI will continue to undergo numerous changes to meet emerging trends, better enabling companies to track trends in their own market and product lines. In turn, this allows management to make more accurate and better-informed business decisions using the advantages of high quality, real-time information and intelligence, which is readily accessible and available whenever and wherever required.
In a time where information is key, Agile BI provides the insight to give SMEs a real competitive advantage as they gear up for growth and look to expand their operations to meet customer demand. However, while the onward march of this most capable of technologies appears relentless, industry reports indicate that a shortage of skilled BI professionals, and the difficulties of managing critical business demand, may emerge sooner rather than later as a factor deterring longer-term sustainable growth.
Richard Deas says it’s critical to address the issue now, adding: “Identifying and recruiting experienced talent is critical to securing the future growth of BI. The role of firms like SearchBI, which possess an a unique insight and understanding of the critical issues, are paramount in identifying and selecting a new generation of BI software specialists with the requisite skills and experience to drive the sector forward and deliver the expertise clients want.”
SearchBI specialises in niche IT recruitment, supplying professionals such as developers, consultants, project managers, business analysts and sales and account management executives, to specialist markets throughout the UK. This includes recruiting for professionals skilled in QlikView data visualisation technologies as well as those experienced in advanced BI systems. More at www.searchbi.co.uk or contact 0191 481 3888.