Looking for the silver bullet in business analytics?

by Zachary Zeus
September 9, 2014
As an analytics platform provider, we frequently get the following requests from potential clients who are looking “BI” solutions:
Common Analytics Requests:
  1. Our current system comes with reporting and anlaytics. Can you plug into that?
  2. What we need is a data scientist.
  3. Can you predict which customer is going to leave us next?
  4. What we need is all of our data in a visualisation engine.
  5. Can you deliver a dashboard to our executive team?
  6. What we really need is self service analytics pointing at “all” of our data sources.
  7. Can you deliver a master data management solution for us?
  8. What we really need is something that looks good – our executives are really picky about colours.
  9. We’re going to implement Hadoop because we have a lot of data.

Now we can do all of the above things with the Pentaho platform and easily, but when we hear these types of requests we try to share there is more to implementing business analytics than just these single issues they are describing.  pentaho-logo-cmyk

These silver bullet solutions are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the true analytics needs of an organisation.  Organisations need to build up an analytics capability that sits across of their functions, aligned with the business and strategic goals.

There are two sides of this analytics capability that needs to be addressed:

1.  Information Presentation – data discovery, visualisations, dashboards, operational reports

– This provides employees across the organisation with information to make better business decisions

2.  Data Management – data integration, data transformation, data blending, data experimentation and data cleansing

–  This provides the organisation with the ability to pull data together from lots of disparate data sources

There are great individual tools that answer each of these questions separately, but are very few that treat these elements as two sides of the same analytics coin.

This is why we are advocates of the Pentaho platform, because it has great tools on both sides of the analtyics coin.  This means that as organisations realise that they need to get consistent scalable value from their data assets, they have a platform that can facilitate building a broader strategic information asset.  In other words, when you use Pentaho to solve one of the point solution, you are also taking the first step down the path of building a long term analytics capability that can scale with your business.

The next blog post will be focused on building a Mongo schema and connection from scratch – not just using the examples.

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