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CIO Review >> Magazine >> April - 2013 issue

Top 10 BI Predictions for 2013 and Beyond


It is that time of year again – time for the BI
predictions for next year. Fortunately, last year's predictions were pretty spot on so there are only a few reasons to update them. So, using 2012's predictions are a base, here's a look at what we expect to see in BI this year:

1. The best tool for each BI job trumps IT standards

BI has traditionally been ruled by over insistence on enterprise wide standards and a single version of the truth. These will continue to be important, but they would not be the Holy Grail. In 2013, expect IT to start embracing agile BI tools, such as ones based on flexible in-memory models, in addition to enterprise-grade BI tools and standards. For
information workers who need information anytime and anywhere, agility concerns will trump standards.

2. Ready or not, information workers will demand more BI control

The current BI approach — a never-ending stream of business requests that IT cannot keep up with — has become unsustainable. Information workers get frustrated with the time lag between when they make requests and when IT
fulfills those requests, so they demand more control over BI. End user self-service features of BI tools, such as semantic layers and search capabilities, will become increasingly critical when selecting and deploying BI tools and solutions.

3. BI tools that support the right amount of managed end user selfservice will become popular

Self-service BI allows casual and power BI users to fulfill the majority of their own requirements, such as ad hoc queries and exploration of entity relationships, without IT
hindering business processes. But it's not that simple: No management or control is unacceptable, but too much control will also become less and less popular. Organizations need to find just the right amount of control that balances the needs of end users and IT. The winning solution will combine the flexibility and agility that selfservice
brings with behind-the-scenes monitoring and adjustments that improve performance.

4. Mobility is no longer a "nice to have" — it will become the new BI mantra

Information workers can no longer wait to make decisions until they "get back to the office” — that may "be too late. Forrester expects that, as BI goes mobile, certain robust mobile features will become the norm: multiple visual query methods, leverage of GPS signals for geo location and geospatial analytics, animated displays, sensorbased queries, and integration with other enterprise mobile ERP applications.

5. Cloud BI will slowly and steadily chip away at on-premises implementations

Cloud BI solutions remain immature, and heavy integration and customization of enterprise BI
platforms, tools, and applications will not go away anytime soon. But the story of cloud BI is not all bad news. Interest in cloud BI solutions certainly exists, due in part to the need to lessen the burden on internal IT resources and the desire for elasticity and low initial investment cost. This will not happen
overnight, but in the coming years Forrester expects the cloud BI market to continue expanding as leading BI vendors get in the game, blurring the lines between on-premises and cloud deployments.