Business Intelligence term describes the process of gathering information and knowledge through the process of analyzing business data. The purpose of business intelligence is to facilitate better business decisions, utilizing the newly found knowledge about the business and its business processes.
Business Intelligence process consists of 3 distinct tasks.
The first challenge business intelligence faces is gathering the necessary data about the business. The key for gathering data is automating the process. Gathering data was very time and money consuming in the past, but with todayís modern computer systems, itís much easier to collect data from various sources.
The second business intelligence task is to analyze the collected data and to extract information from it. The extracted information is then turned into business knowledge.
The third and final business intelligence task is to use the newly gathered business knowledge to improve the business.
There are many business intelligence tools developed to facilitate the process of gathering business knowledge. These business intelligence tools fall into one or more broad business intelligence categories like Online Analytical Processing (OLAP), Data Mining, Text Mining, Data Warehousing, Decision Support, Dashboarding and many more.
Some of the most popular business intelligence tools are Cognos, BizTools, Applix, Hummingbird, Hyperion and Informatica.