The ability to make accurate business decisions and quickly has become a key for a company to reach success.
However, traditional information systems (like most management programs, custom applications, and even the most sophisticated ERP), often have a very inflexible structure for this purpose.
Although its design adapts more or less data to manage the company, it does not allow to obtain information from them, much less extrapolate stored in the day-to-day knowledge databases. The main features that limit these systems are:
High stiffness when extracting data so that the user has to stick to the predefined reports that are configured at the time of implantation, and do not always respond to their real questions.
Technical skills. To generate new reports or metrics is often unavoidable contact the technical department, asking for a proper consultation to interrogate the database.
Long response times as complex data queries typically involve attachment of operational large tables, which results in an uncomfortable expected difficult work flow.
Deterioration in the performance of SI. When queried database to generate reports or business ratios, is the same as that which supports the operating company, system performance may be degraded to affect and paralyze all users connected.
Lack of integration involves data islands. Many organizations have multiple information systems, built at different times, to solve different problems. Their databases are usually not integrated, which implies the existence of islands of information.
Inaccurate, outdated or incomplete data. The issue of data quality is always regarded as important, but this work was never carried to extremes to ensure the reliability of the information provided.
Trouble matching the information provided by the user. This is not everyone has access to all the information, but you have access to the information you need to make your work as efficient as possible.
Lack of historical data. The data stored in operational systems are designed to bring the company up to date, but do not allow to compare the current situation with a retrospective situation years ago.
To overcome these limitations, the Business Intelligence is based on a set of tools that facilitate the extraction, purification, analysis and storage of the data generated in an organization, with the right speed to generate knowledge and support decision-making of managers and appropriate users.
Not that BI products are better than current applications: These are systems with different objectives, efficient in their respective fields, but must be supplemented to optimize the value of information systems.