The problem with business intelligence is that most of it is not particularly actionable. IT organizations are quite good at giving business executives insights into business trends, but the trouble is that they usually arrive long after anyone could do something to change the result.
But James Fisher, SAP vice president of marketing for enterprise performance management (EPM), says recent advances in in-memory analytics coupled with broader usage of mobile computing devices is about to make business intelligence a whole lot more actionable.
At the Sapphire Now conference today, SAP rolled out version 10 of its SAP BusinessObjects Enterprise Performance Management software, which adds support for the new SAP in-memory appliance. SAP introduced its High Performance Analytics Appliances (HANA) architecture based on Intel Xeon processors last year, which system vendor partners are now starting to deliver.
Those platforms, says Fisher, make it possible to process analytics data at speeds that allow highly relevant information to be delivered to business leaders at the time they need it. That data can then be easily accessed via any device, which then allows the business executive to initiate an action on that information because of the tight integration between SAP BusinessObjects EPM and the rest of the SAP business applications portfolio.
This ability, says Fisher, is going to change the way organizations work by reducing the amount of time it takes to first analyze information, give people access to it and then execute a decision based on that information.
Obviously, that kind of capability has a lot of implications for the average business in terms of how it operates and the overall culture of the company. But like most disruptive technology advancements, it is usually a race that goes to the swift in terms of building a sustainable competitive advantage.