Business intelligence (BI) needs to be integrated with a company's operational systems if it is to achieve worthwhile results, experts have warned.
Martin Butler, president of UK analyst Butler Group, said that many companies had bought into the BI hype but had got nothing from their investment.
"BI is in need of significant attention if it isn't going to be discredited," said Butler. "But it is a complex issue and typically BI is more expensive and longer to implement than people imagine."
He explained that users expecting BI to predict the future were naive because there were more variables than could be enumerated. "Typically no-one in the organisation understands the data," he added.
Tim Jennings, research director at Butler Group, suggested that the solution is to turn information into action.
"The way you do that is to build it back into operational systems," he said. But he warned that without this, the investment would be wasted.
Gareth Morfill, senior analyst at Ovum, told vnunet.com that, although recent research showed BI usage to be high, there are lots of reasons not to use it.
He explained that the key is to understand data integration modelling. "You need to decide what information you need to support the operational or strategic system and look to build it," he said.
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