Business Intelligence: How It Works, and Its Role for Business Analysis – In the current era of modern technology, the term business intelligence or BI is used more and more often. However, what is actually meant by BI, and what are the benefits for your company?

Definition of Business Intelligence (BI)

Discussing the definition of business intelligence, this term can be said to be a term that does not need a long explanation. Because, of course, you already know what the words ‘ business ‘ and ‘ intelligence ‘ mean, right?

As part of the business intelligence process, a company will collect data from internal IT systems and external sources. Then the company will prepare the data for business analysis, run queries against the data, and then create data visualizations.

Thus, the process carried out involves collecting data in a data warehouse or other data storage warehouse. Next, the company will use special tools to analyze the data. Examples of the data in question include customers’ online shopping habits, business operational costs, and sales information.

The main goal of BI is to drive better and better quality company business decisions. That way, the company’s business can increase its income, improve business operational efficiency, and achieve a competitive advantage in the midst of market competition.

To achieve this goal, BI uses a series of analyses combined according to the purpose and needs of its use, data management, and data reporting tools, along with various methodologies for managing and analyzing data.

So what is business intelligence (BI)?

Business Intelligence: How It Works, and Its Role for Business Analysis
Business Intelligence: How It Works, and Its Role for Business Analysis

So Business Intelligence is a process that uses technological capabilities to analyze data and provide important information to decision-makers such as top executives, managers, and people who need to make business decisions. As part of this BI process, an organization will collect data from internal IT and externally, then analyze the data, then visualize the data in the form of a dashboard.

What is the Difference between Business Intelligence and Business Analytics?

One thing that you may often notice regarding business intelligence is its similarity to business analytics or company business analysis.

According to the CIO, BI is more descriptive. This means that BI tells you what is happening now, as well as what happened in the past until the organization is finally in its current state. Meanwhile, business analysis is a general term for predictive data analytics techniques. This means that business analysis will tell you what you should do to get better results.

However, the differences between the two are not only limited to descriptive or predictive properties but also regarding who BI is intended for. According to an explanation from Stitch Data quoted from the CIO page, BI seeks to present a snapshot of the current condition of the organization.

Meanwhile, business analysis produces predictions and suggestions, which require the services of data science experts to analyze and interpret the data used. Therefore, one of the goals of BI is to produce data processing and reports that can be easily understood, even by non-technical end users.

What is the Importance of BI?

After understanding what BI is, now is the time to dive deeper into questions related to BI that business people like you might feel: “Why do companies need business intelligence?”

To answer this question, it means you need to understand the “why”. Answering this question is very important for the company internally, especially because implementing BI certainly requires financial resources which are discussed in the budgeting stage. Another reason is that there is the possibility of opposition to the use or adoption of BI within the company.

Fundamentally, the importance of BI according to The Enterprisers Project can be summarized as follows: Business intelligence is the practice of making data-based decisions a reality.

Data, workflow, and collaboration are aspects of business that intersect and intersect, regardless of division or issues raised such as supply chains, determining product lines to focus on, and so on. And in making decisions, intuition is completely weak without insight or data-based insights.

Reporting from The Enterprisers Project, here are 4 reasons why business intelligence is important.

Encourages fast decision-making.

Data-driven decision-making does not fully convey one of the important meanings in it, where people most want decisions made quickly. And even business decisions are currently required to be made at the same speed or close to the speed of the data production process.

BI can process abundant data in a usable form.

In the business world, experience and instinct are still relevant for making business decisions. However, sometimes what is meant by instinct is no different from a random guess. In fact, business decisions cannot be made haphazardly, let alone strategic decisions.

This is also closely related to the speed of decision-making. Because what used to be a reporting process that took a lot of time and energy can now be done continuously.

Provide specific uses and benefits based on industry.

Despite the fact that business intelligence can be used by companies of all sizes and fields, BI itself is not a “one-size-fits-all” solution. Because, each company can adapt it to its own needs, industry, and business.

BI continues to develop with intelligence technology, especially AI.

BI and AI ( artificial intelligence) do not stand alone. In fact, the two are closely related to each other. When both are carried out in tandem, AI can improve a company’s analytical capabilities beyond what BI can do so far.

The combination of the two can enable more processes to be carried out automatically. For example, the entire company analysis process reduces human involvement, especially in tasks that tend to take up time and energy.

What are the benefits of Business Intelligence?

Here are the 3 main benefits of implementing business intelligence, as reported on the official Google Cloud page :

Can use data better to understand business performance.

The role of business intelligence is to improve the overall performance of a company. With modern BI tools, your company will be able to understand what happened, the reasons (why), and what needs to happen to optimize business operations for the better.

Take actionable steps in response to key performance indicators.

By using BI, your company will be able to analyze data continuously and determine what actions can affect business performance, both in the short and long term.

The analyzed data will be able to reveal important patterns and trends in all areas of the company – sales, production, customer service, marketing, and so on.

Find opportunities to open new business lines.

By implementing BI, your company will be able to inform business decisions at all levels. That way, employees will be able to adapt quickly to changes in business conditions. One of them is determining new product lines, attracting new customers through targeted marketing plans, and optimizing sales channels.

Google Cloud, Business Intelligence Solution for Efficient Business Analysis

Currently, you can find a wide selection of BI tools and platforms that you can use for your company. One of them is the option provided by Google Cloud.

Google Cloud services themselves consist of a series of physical assets such as computers and hard disks, along with virtual resources such as virtual machines (VMs) located in Google data centers throughout the world. You can access this service via the Google Cloud Console which is a web-based platform, command-line tools, and client libraries.

Regarding business intelligence solutions, Google Cloud offers a choice of BigQuery and Looker products and services, both of which are designed to take advantage of the scalability, efficiency, and data security of Google Cloud.

Google Cloud offers a secure, fast, and reliable infrastructure. Not only that, but products in Google Cloud can also capture, manage, process, and visualize data. This is done with Looker, which is a platform for business intelligence, data applications, and analysis.

With Looker, you can produce visualizations and models from data to make it easier to carry out business analysis because you will be able to use data that is truly relevant and easy to understand.

Apart from Looker, there is also a BigQuery service in Google Cloud. BigQuery is a multi-cloud data warehouse service. Here, you can improve the quality of business decisions by using data stored in the cloud, thereby reducing the need for procurement and maintenance of physical or in-house data storage.

Not only that, BigQuery is also a serverless data warehouse service, aka without a physical server. That way, you will be able to take advantage of this service without having to consider capacity or scale. That way, if the scale of your business increases, you can adjust your needs easily.

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