If you’re like a growing number of Americans, you are never without your smart phone, your tablet, or likely both. You may have an app for managing nearly every facet of your life. Smart technology controls many appliances in your home, programs your DVR, stores your photos, and even schedules your doctor appointments.
By 2014, Gartner predicts 40% of business analytics expenditure will go to system integrators, not software vendors and that percentage will quickly climb to near 100 in the not too distant future. If you’re an IT analyst, project manager or supply chain manager, you may be interested in taking the next step in your career by earning your Master of Science in Business Intelligence & Analytics where you can be well positioned for the changing landscape.
Today’s Applications in BI/BA
It’s clear that the world of business intelligence and analytics is embracing these applications and with good reason. The mobility, accessibility, and ease that an app offers can deliver great benefits for stakeholders who need to keep apprised of their company’s key performance indicators (KPI) on a real-time basis.
Imagine the convenience of walking through a warehouse with your tablet or smart phone in hand; comparing the stock on the shelves to the warehouse dashboard on the app or the ways instant access to sales figures can enhance a client review.
Today’s business intelligence and analytics (BI/BA) mobile apps focus on operational flexibility just like this and share tools that bring data to any work environment.
BIRT mobile apps by Actuate, optimized for Apple, Android and BlackBerry devices, runs BIRT open-source and commercial products, and can be deployed enterprise-wide with little or no IT effort.
The established business intelligence and analytics vendor MicroStrategy launched its iPad and iPhone app in July 2011. The company touts its “touch-optimized reporting, analysis and monitoring” functions for data stored enterprise-wide. The app makes on-the-go analytics and data mining possible, with embedded strategic analysis and even alerts. Online, the app automatically downloads new and updated content. Offline, it stores subscribed reports and dashboards so users can access them even without the benefit of a WiFi or a data plan.
Upping the cool factor, this app can run alongside Apple TV. This means that with the proper equipment, you can present and control a highly visual presentation during a meeting and manipulate the images using the familiar swipes on your device’s screen.
The Roambi app for business intelligence and analytics takes advantage of the iPad’s high-def retinal display to provide an engaging, colorful user interface as a backdrop for charts and other forms of analytics. The company believes that the more friendly and intuitive the app, the more adoption from potential users. This makes their technology easy to be deployed and navigated.
As a platform-agnostic app, Roambi adapts to a number of software systems, including those from Microsoft, IBM and SAP, as well as with individual programs like Excel and Google docs. The app is also optimized for smartphone use, which caught the eye of the BestApps website. “Overall,” says the site, “Roambi Visualizer app for iPhone is a must have for all business executives who play with data/numbers all the time.”
YellowFin is dedicated to creating the most engaging mobile business intelligence and analytics platform possible, declaring, “we believe [it] should be as fun and easy to use as browsing your favorite online magazine, or sharing ideas with friends across your social network.” To that end, YellowFin’s user experience focuses on fast, visual cues. Users can flick through charts and graphs, customize reports easily, and analyze data quickly. With geographic information systems (GIS) technology integrated into the app, YellowFin now delivers functionality that plays off the kind of location analysis often associated with GPS units and Google Maps.
“One of the key uses of GIS is store/branch/dealer location,” YellowFin CEO Glen Rabie says. “The most compelling is the use of spatial data for optimizing marketing campaigns. Understanding the demographics of your desired customer and where they are located is critical if you want to maximize the return on your marketing dollar.”
Cloud-computing technology allows the YellowFin-based data to be accessible from multiple devices from the moment it’s published. It appears on PC, Mac, notebook, tablet or smart phone in a consistent format, which helps multiple users understand the same data. A drop-down menu gives users share tools for distribution and archiving.
To serve business intelligence and analytics needs, SAP BusinessObjects mobile app allows users to monitor KPI and view real-time metrics and documents from SAP Business Objects Web Intelligence or SAP Crystal Reports software. The technology is designed to keep you quickly informed of time-critical events and updated information, sending alerts when action is required. Offline data storage means you can review charts and graphs even while traveling on an airplane not equipped with Wi-Fi.
Get the Expert Edge
The business intelligence and analytics app revolution is changing the way stakeholders approach data. To keep up with this technology and other advancements, a Master of Science in Business Intelligence & Analytics can deliver the training and insight you need to take your career to the executive level.