Business intelligence is a technology that, while of interest to SMBs, has been perceived by many of them as too costly or complex to implement.
That perception starts to change, however, when it is delivered via a software-as-a-service model. All of the major BI vendors, including Business Objects, SAS and Cognos, are now offering SaaS options in an effort to win more SMB business.
Both Business Objects and Cognos recently acquired SaaS specialists, Nsite and Celequest, respectively, to beef up their SaaS offerings.
According to this Enterprise Systems article, however, many BI vendors have yet to wholeheartedly endorse the SaaS model. Rather, they present it as a less robust version of their on-premise suites of BI software.
It's fair to say that businesses of all sizes will need to firm up their BI strategies, or risk being left behind. Several analyst firms, including Saugatuck Technology, say BI is a top spending priority for CIOs this year. IDC predicts the BI market will grow from $1.7 billion in 2005 to $2.7 billion in 2010.