Dresner: Mobile the new platform for Business Intelligence (Part Two)

Highlights from the Howard Dresner Mobile Business Intelligence Market Study 2011 Webcast (Part Two)

For those of you who didn’t read part one of our two-part blog series – Dresner: Mobile the new platform for Business Intelligence (Part One) – (you should) here’s the go:

Howard Dresner officially launched the updated Mobile Business Intelligence Market Study for 2011 in a live webcast on February 17.

The webcast, sponsored by InformationWeek, discussed the results of the survey described as “the ‘Bible’ that every serious Business Intelligence user, Solution Supplier and Service provider MUST own” on the paper’s official website – The Business Intelligence Study.

Now, let’s pick up where we left off.

Which types of workers are the biggest users of Mobile BI?

“When we take a look at it [Mobile BI usage] by role, executives are at the top of the heap. The most senior levels of management continue to be the focus of Mobile Business Intelligence,” said Dresner. “The next group to be automated with Mobile Business Intelligence, unsurprisingly, would be sales.

“But you can also see that there’s a lot of interest around middle management and line management.”

Dresner explained that this pattern was often attributed to the fact that IT departments need to gain the backing of senior management to implement BI rollouts, and support was easier won if they could see the benefits firsthand.

Which BI market segments are the biggest users of Mobile BI?

Dresner said the report indicated that, from a vertical perspective, retailers, wholesalers and manufacturers were the three current biggest users of Mobile BI.

“But I would say the number one vertical for Mobile Business Intelligence right now would be retail,” said Dresner.

Mobile BI adoption by company size

"If we take a slightly different slice, and look at it [Mobile BI adoption] by size of organization, we see that the small and midsized enterprises seem far more ambitious in their goals to deliver Mobile Business Intelligence," said Dresner.

"If we look at it geographically, the top banana would be North America."

Mobile BI platforms: User priorities

Dresner explained that there have been large shifts in user priorities regarding Mobile BI platform preferences.

In general, interest in the iPad as a first priority Mobile BI platform has jumped from Dresner’s June 2010 Mobile BI Market Study. Black Berry has risen slightly, whilst the iPhone, has fallen down the priority stakes, with organizations looking to the new Android and Windows platforms.

Actual Mobile BI platform deployment and plans

However, despite the reported preferences for certain Mobile BI platforms, Dresner said that the reality of current usage was quite different.

“Organizations are using what they have,” he said. “The Black Berry is still the number one platform out there – certainly for Mobile Business Intelligence."

Delivery of Mobile BI: SaaS vs in-house

Despite the recent interest in BI as a Software as a Service (SaaS) application, Dresner said that most organizations use their own infrastructure and applications to facilitate their Mobile BI programs.

“Larger enterprises are less likely to use software as a service and Cloud Computing for Mobile Business Intelligence,” he said. “But small and midsized organizations say they will definitely use Software as a service and Cloud Computing to port their Mobile devices.”

Device data storage and Mobile BI: The need for security

The spread of Mobile BI raises obvious concerns and questions regarding the management and security of corporate information and data assets.

Dresner said the report revealed that almost 40 percent of respondents said they would not store data on mobile device, but only on their server.

“If you’re a governmental organization or in healthcare, or there’s any sort of really sensitive data that needs to be secured, [in that case] organizations will not let that data move down to the device,” said Dresner.

Conclusion: Mobile BI is the new BI

Dresner concluded that the rapidly growing uptake and interest in Mobile BI meant that in the future, it would not merely represent a growing facet of BI, but would become the main form of deliver for business analytics and the focal point of the entire industry.

“Moving forward I expect to see a rising tide across all segments, all classes of user, and all verticals,” said Dresner.

“I do believe that [Mobile BI] becomes fundamentally the new platform for Business Intelligence.”

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