Year in review: Top 9 Business Intelligence developments of 2011 (P3)

Parts one and two of this three-part blog series discussed the super-hero-like deluge of 2011’s Business Intelligence (BI) developments and dialogue, including: Self-service BI, Collaborative BI, Mobile BI, Agile BI, social media analytics and Big Data. Part three concludes 2011’s BI saga…

7. SaaS: BI in the cloud spurs SMB adoption

IDC research indicates that the SaaS BI market has and will experience triple the growth of the overall market, expanding at a compound annual growth rate of 22.4 percent through to 2013.

Research by the Aberdeen GroupFast, Affordable, Agile: The Case for SaaS BI – has revealed that the primary motivations for utilizing BI as a SaaS deployment are to:

  • Reduce capital expenditure
  • Reduce ongoing costs
  • Enhance technical capabilities
  • Increase employee access to reporting and analytics with minimal IT involvement and support/maintenance requirements

According to a new report from AMI-Partners, small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are flocking to SaaS BI due to the lower achievable Total Cost of Ownership. Overall, the U.S. SMB Cloud Playbook study found that SMB usage of cloud-based BI is set to increase by 25 percent during the next four years. This projected increase would see the US SaaS BI market reach $500 million in 2015.

“The study’s findings reflect two factors,” Donald Best of AMI-Partners said. “SMBs are becoming more aware of the benefits of mining their data for insights that can result in savings and competitive advantage. In addition, the availability of BI/SaaS, as part of a larger bundle, makes this a very attractive and cost-effective proposition."

A new report by Channel Insider said that BI vendors have, and will continue to develop products and offerings aimed at the SMB market, as they realize the value in this emergent niche. The report suggests that these tailored – most often cloud-based – solutions spurred SMB BI adoption in 2011 and will continue to do so during 2012.

“With big business intelligence vendors … offering more modular solutions, and SaaS vendors offering SMB-specific solutions, 2011 will continue to make it easier for SMBs to sift through their intelligence data,” the report states.

8. Business users dominate purchase decisions and implementation strategies

The continued consumerization of BI, and enterprise technologies at large, saw companies and vendors turn to business-user oriented BI solutions and deployment strategies during 2011 – all in an attempt to reach that elusive Holy Grail of ‘widespread and sustainable user adoption’. As a result, these new user groups – most residing outside the IT department – found themselves with an increasing number of seats at the BI purchasing table. This trend was reflected in comments made by Gartner in their 2011 BI Platforms User Survey: “…Vocal, demanding and influential business users are increasingly driving BI purchasing decisions, most often choosing easier to use data discovery tools over traditional BI platforms — with or without IT’s consent.”

Dresner Advisory Services’ 2011 Wisdom of Crowds Business Intelligence Market Study also noted that 2011 had seen BI adoption and usage move into the hands of business users: “Business users appear to be increasingly driving BI adoption. We believe that the trend towards business-dominated BI is a global trend, with other geographies lagging behind North America by several years,” wrote report author and former Gartner research fellow, Howard Dresner.

9. Me-too-ism

Did you notice the mad scramble to reinvent and reorient during 2011? Traditional players in the BI space suddenly became experts in Agile and Self-Service (consumer-oriented) BI, as the Big Boys’ marketing teams screamed into overdrive (and hyperventilation) in an attempt to meet demand for product usability.

Where to next?

Look out for our next blog series, containing our vision and predictions for 2012’s BI marketplace.

Thanks for trying Yellowfin

Please complete the form below to request your copy of Yellowfin today.