What is Business Intelligence ?

I’ve told you my short-unfinished experience story about business intelligence. But, before I continue, I want to answer the first question came up on my first post. Yes, it is “what is business intelligence (BI) ?”

All you people should have known information system software like your university’s online registration system, your office’s task progress tracker system, government’s tax system, or anything else that you see or use it often. That kind of system is called with day-to-day data transactional system (at least I call it so). The system provide us with real time data, because every second, minute, hour, or day data transaction occurred is recorded in the database. So the data time information is very clear and precise.

Now, what about business intelligence (BI) system? It’s used to show us summarized information. What does it mean with ‘summarized information’? Please see picture below

Brief Structure of BI

The information that BI system provides is based on the day-to-day data transactional system that build it. All the data is collected and summarized then the BI system show the information like this

Key Performance Indicator Pivot Table

Data Trend

BI system is used to get summarized information about the organization performance. Usually, the users who use this system are middle level management and top level management. They use it as one of tools to make a decision over their organization. Because from this system, they can get selling data trend from semester 1, 2009 until semester 2, 2009 or maybe they’re able to know the amount of product selling based on region and many more summarized detail information they can get.

To sum it up, I will show you the difference between the application you often see (day-to-day data transactional system) and BI system

BI System Day-to-Day Data Transactional System
Purpose To get detail information of organization’s business performance To cover organization’s business process
Users Middle and top level management Any level in organization
Data Update Periodically from day-to-day data transactional system Real time
Kind of Data Summarized Data from transactional event

That’s all I think for the brief description about Business Intelligence System. I hope you understand the basic concept for BI system. Maybe after you read the next part of my story about BI, you could get more of it.


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