Earl Atkinson, business intelligence (BI) expert at PA Consulting Group, has contributed to the debate on data analysis in the Financial Times Digital Digest report.
The article looks at the impact developments in computing power, as well as improvements in programming, have had to reduce the infrastructure demands of BI. The article points out that it is now quite possible to run small-scale BI queries using little more than a data source, a laptop computer and a spreadsheet program. Some businesses – especially smaller ones – do indeed manage their data analysis this way. However, BI experts caution that this approach struggles to scale up to support the larger enterprise, and can raise real difficulties in areas such as data governance and lead to companies having multiple master data sets, or “multiple versions of the truth”.
Commenting on the issue, Earl Atkinson says: “Most organisations don’t use external data but rely on [data from] their operational systems to solve specific problems. As a result, the data will only be as good – and as timely – as the information held in those underlying systems.”
You can read the article in full here