According to numerous analyst firms, the Business Intelligence (BI) software market is growing at an exhilarating rate. Gartner deemed BI as the second-fastest growing enterprise software marketing (16.4 percent year-over-year in 2011), and IDC projects the market will reach $33.9 billion by the end of this year.
That being said, the market has potentially been understated. As the typical users of BI tools transitions from IT staff to average business people, millions will soon be using analytical tools they barely knew existed a few short years ago. There are three reasons for this:
The Cloud Brings BI to the Small Business - As a new generation of cloud-based BI systems arrive with sleek, easy-to-use interfaces, the average business user now has access to tools that were exclusive to the enterprise in the past. With the US small business market recently estimated as approximately 27.7 million businesses, this is a largely untapped market for business intelligence.
Managers Now Have Access to Data with Visualizations - Measurement is the first step to improving any process. Unfortunately, measurement in the past was commonly done in the form of spreadsheets and databases-not exactly the best vessel to obtain valuable information, quickly. New BI solutions with impressive dashboard and visualization functionality allow managers the ability to quickly assimilate information and provide detailed insight on team performances.
Proliferation of Smartphones and Tablets Leads to Mobile BI - Michael Sayer predicted in his book, “The Mobile Wave: How Mobile Intelligence Will Change Everything,” that there will be 5 billion smartphones in-use by 2015, and the same number of tablets by 2022. As more users adopt mobile computing devices-or transition to them entirely-business is commonly taking place more than just in the office, in board rooms, in airports and in hotel lobbies. It’s also happening at the gym, in bed or while taking children to the park. Mobile-enabled dashboards, simple visualizations and custom alerts mean BI will become a pervasive part of business that will segment the winners and losers: those who make data-informed decisions, and those who don’t.
As we move forward, it will be exciting to see how BI consumerization impacts business users from organizations both large and small. What are your thoughts on the potential for the BI market?
By Michael Koploy, an Analyst at SoftwareAdvice.com who writes for their company blog.