Reporting Analytics and Business Intelligence (BI) Dashboards
Now our topic gets even murkier. Reporting analytics and business intelligence applications are very different,both from each other and from reporting software, but we find that many companies use all three terms interchangeably. This has led to confusion with customers during initial discussions about what solutions would work best for them.
Based on how we’ve seen the market evolve over the past decade, here’s how we define these terms:
Reporting analytics relies on algorithms to statistically determine relationships among various data points. Reporting analytics software uses scientific formulas to find groupings or trends,and it allows for predictive forecasting based on the data at hand.
Reporting can be a small part of analytics as it could be used to retrieve the data for these formulas, but reporting software does not do the analytics.
Business Intelligence (BI) is a super set of analytics. It is the practice of using all the formulas and outputs analytics comes up with and putting that information into digestible terms.
Forrester Research calls BI “a set of methodologies, processes, architectures, and technologies that leverage the output of information management processes for analysis, reporting, performance management, and information delivery.”
Most of the time, BI is referring to data visualization (high-end charting and graphing) or high-end data dashboards, which reporting software does not typically handle.
Learn more about different reporting in our Brief Guide: Reporting, BI, Document Generation, and Dashboards.