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Software Functionality Revealed in Detail
We’ve opened the hood on every major category of enterprise software. Learn about thousands of features and functions, and how enterprise software really works.
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 bi crm implementation tools


Marquee Vendors Partner for Deepening Inherent CRM and BI Links
Despite the logic behind combining customer relationship management (CRM) and business intelligence (BI) elements, the implementation of marketing automation

bi crm implementation tools  connection between CRM and BI can be seen in marketing automation (MA). MA involves analyzing and automating the marketing process to better allocate resources into various activities, channels, and media to build and enhance profitable customer relationships. This moves beyond traditional metrics to incorporate data cleansing, analysis tools, and campaign management systems (see the article Why Are CRM and Analytics Intrinsically Connected? ) Despite the complementary nature of CRM and BI, the

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Software Functionality Revealed in Detail

We’ve opened the hood on every major category of enterprise software. Learn about thousands of features and functions, and how enterprise software really works.

Get free sample report
Compare Software Solutions

Visit the TEC store to compare leading software by functionality, so that you can make accurate and informed software purchasing decisions.

Compare Now

Business Intelligence (BI)

Business intelligence (BI) and performance management applications enable real-time, interactive access, analysis, and manipulation of mission-critical corporate information. These applications provide users with valuable insights into key operating information to quickly identify business problems and opportunities. Users are able to access and leverage vast amounts of information to analyze relationships and understand trends that ultimately support business decisions. These tools prevent the potential loss of knowledge within the enterprise that results from massive information accumulation that is not readily accessible or in a usable form. It is an umbrella term that ties together other closely related data disciplines including data mining, statistical analysis, forecasting, and decision support. 

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Scala and Microsoft Become (Not So) Strange CRM Bedfellows


The Scala and Microsoft alliance in the CRM arena has merits of mutual benefits, particularly in the short to medium term, but due to vacillating motives of the participants that compete in the other enterprise applications fields, will it last? For the time being, Microsoft will likely be content to help Scala attack or keep the satellite divisions of its bigger competitors, particularly those of their common rival - SAP.

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On-demand ERP in the Enterprise: A Practical CIO Guide to Implementation


Discover a framework for crafting a software-as-a-service (SaaS) strategy in your company. Examine key concerns such as data integrity, maintaining compliance, and ensuring proper process management, as well as approaches to help maximize your return on investment (ROI). A SaaS solution for your enterprise resource planning (ERP) or accounting system might be your ticket to improved business and application performance.

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BI State of the Market Report


IT departments rarely know as much about a business as the business people themselves. But business people rarely take action on numbers alone: they share the information with others, soliciting their feedback and performing external research before taking action. Business users still depend on IT to deliver answers related to the information that they receive. Business intelligence (BI) 2.0—also known as collaborative BI—uses the collective intelligence of the user community to enrich existing information. Learn how business intelligence (BI) 2.0 is helping business users create and modify their own reports, share and enrich information, and provide feedback to each other and to information producers.

When the community helps itself, information is turned into actionable information more quickly than when using purely “traditional” methods of community support, such as meetings, phone calls, and e-mail. And when actions are taken more quickly, the entire organization becomes more nimble and ultimately more competitive. This overview discusses how BI 2.0 can provide real benefits within your organization and what product features to look for in a BI solution in order to realize those benefits.

We hope you’ll find this guide a useful tool in determining which BI solution is best suited to your company’s business model and particular needs.


Table of Contents


Executive Overview
Using BI 2.0 to Increase your Competitive Advantage

Case Study
LogiXML Helps to Power its Real-Estate Reporting and Analysis

Thought Leadership
How Smart Marketers Succeed Online

Market Insight
Mashups and Pervasive BI

Report Sponsors
LogiXML

IBM

About TEC



Download the full copy of the TEC 2009 BI Buyer’s Guide for businesses.



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Using BI 2.0 to Increase Your Competitive Advantage


Business users know their data better than IT does. They know the meaning of the data, its history, and its relationship with other data. Yet traditional BI solutions have business users referring to IT for assistance with their data. Also, they are forced to work in silos. Sure, they can create their own reports and maybe even share them with other business users, but when it comes to sharing their own knowledge about the data, they have to rely on e-mail, telephone, and face-to-face meetings. By enabling the sharing of data-related knowledge through the BI system itself, business users become more self-sufficient and actions can be taken more quickly.

The raison d’être of BI is to provide business users with information that enables them to take action. Even if business users are self-sufficient when it comes to creating and sharing data, data on its own is rarely sufficient to take action. Identifying an opportunity in the market through numbers alone is not sufficient to justify investment in a new product or geography. Identifying a bottleneck in a business process is not sufficient to justify changes in the business process. Information about a business issue or opportunity is merely a part of the overall “solution domain.” Action is usually only taken after considering a number of factors in addition to the data, such as human knowledge and experience, the economic environment, and the competitive environment.

In this section, we lay out the capabilities to look for in a BI solution—and specific functional requirements needed to support these capabilities—that contribute to the goal of “harnessing collective intelligence.” In general, the more recent entrants into the BI market are paying the most attention to BI 2.0. Some vendors, such as Good Data, have it as a central component of their solution offerings.

The following are key capabilities of BI 2.0:

  • Collaboration
    Business users are able to share information within the user community and create discussion threads relating to the information.


  • Identification of useful information
    Business users can flag information that is likely to be of use to others within the community.


  • Enriching of Information
    Business users can enrich the information through their knowledge and experience in addition to other external information sources in order to explain trends and generally assist other consumers of that information.


The community of “business users” needn’t be restricted to internal users. User collaboration is already mature within the Web space, under the guise of Web 2.0. With Web 2.0, collective intelligence is harnessed through comments on blog posts; contributions to wikis such as Wikipedia; and tagging of content, such as photos on Flickr. BI 2.0 takes these methods and applies them in the BI space by making data the focus of user collaboration.

The following sections take the capabilities above and list the functional requirements that support them. Bear in mind that each of these functional requirements is a business user requirement and not an IT or development requirement.


Download the full copy of the TEC 2009 BI Buyer’s Guide for businesses.

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Are you BI Lingual or Just BI Curious?


Lost in Translation If your organization was a celebutante, who would it be? Well, comely or not, let’s hope that when it comes to BI, you’re not a bemused, glassy-eyed Scarlett Johansson à la Lost in Translation http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0335266. If so, there’s a cure and it’s not acting lessons. It’s a lesson in collaboration; ensuring that both your IT and business teams are speaking the

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Want to Avoid ERP Implementation Problems? Learn How from the Experts


In Lessons from ERP Implementation Failures, you'll discover the five maincauses of ERP implementation failure.

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Optimizing Returns from ERP Implementation


Enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems can help manufacturers solve business problems and increase return on investment (ROI), but their implementation should not be taken lightly. In this interview, experts from SAP, Infor, and Microsoft discuss factors affecting ROI from an ERP system. The panel offer viewpoints on the feasibility of measuring ROI, importance of ownership of ERP implementation, anticipated and real benefits, and benchmarks and drivers affecting quick time to value of an ERP solution.

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Implementation Pitfalls


Implementation can be a hidden factor in HR/payroll software implementation. And the implementation process is about a lot more than learning to use the software—there are also important people issues that can be essential to success with a new software system. Read this white paper to learn about why meeting an implementation team prior to selecting a new software solution can be crucial to the success of the implementation, plus some common implementation pitfalls to avoid.

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2011 Business Intelligence Buyer's Guide: BI for Everyone


This buyer guide is intended for business owners, managers, decision makers, and anyone interested in learning about the deployment of business intelligence (BI) systems across large enterprises as well as small to medium businesses (SMBs). It presents a comprehensive view of the wide spectrum of BI software solutions currently available and investigates how they match different types of organizations according to size and need.

The guide addresses software solutions in three major groupings:

  • BI for large enterprises
  • BI for SMBs
  • Software-as-a-service (SaaS) BI offerings
The guide covers a wide range of BI solutions for almost all organizations, and anyone interested in a BI system should be able to identify a potential suitable solution. Each section contains specific information to help organizations research and analyze BI solutions, and make decisions about which BI software is a good fit for them.


Table of Contents


Preface

Business Intelligence: A Buyer’s Guide

SAP Customer Success Story
Marcus & Millichap Sharpens Reporting with SAP BusinessObjects Solution Portfolio

SAP Customer Success Story
Aquent Uses SAP BusinessObjects Software Tools to Deliver Talent

QlikView Customer Success Story
Fast Growing Company, Mayflex, Chooses IBM Cognos Express to Deliver Essential Business Intelligence and Planning Capability

MicroStrategy Customer Success Story
Using MicoStrategy Mobile to Perform Marketing and Consumer Shopping Behavior Analysis

Thought Leadership
SaaS BI Tools: Better Decision Making for the Rest of Us

SAP Special Report
The Business Information Revolution: Best-run Businesses Innovate Better with SAP

TEC Special Report
The Role of Business Intelligence in Content Strategies


Vendor Directory


Download the full copy of the TEC 2011 BI Buyer’s Guide for large enterprises and SMBs.



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Is BI Really for Everyone?


BI for Large Enterprises

Because of the nature of BI, which traditionally involved the incorporation of expensive high-end software technology, BI software systems were first deployed in large enterprises. To encompass the complete BI life cycle process, it was necessary to have strong budgets, as well as the means and justification for taking financial risks in order to gain a competitive advantage. To achieve this competitive advantage, many large companies were eager for software tools that would enable them to improve their decision-making process. Some software companies responded to this need by accelerating the evolution of classical decision support systems to provide sophisticated analysis tools with high-end software technology. Naturally, the high cost of these types of tools limited their accessibility to large-scale companies (also, the technical requirements for this technology could be met by big corporations only).

In the last four or five years, economic factors as well as the exponential growth of data volumes generated by organizations have forced the development of very sophisticated BI applications, and also expanded the kind of tools a classical BI system normally uses. The BI space is still growing and maturing, and large corporations are still demanding new solutions for new enterprise needs.


BI for SMBs

With recent economic conditions and the information boom, many smaller companies have found themselves requiring analysis tools that enable them to improve their business monitoring and performance improvement strategies. BI solution innovation has cascaded down from large companies to provide adapted and specific services to companies with a need for advanced analytic software tools but with very limited budgets. Recent BI tools have improved the BI life cycle to help organizations of every size and shape to improve analysis, data management, and data visualization tools.


Download the full copy of the TEC 2011 BI Buyer’s Guide for large enterprises and SMBs.

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BI on the Go: About Functionality and Level of Satisfaction


We thought it would be useful to take another look at what was revealed in our recent survey on mobile BI regarding what’s important for mobile BI users, and of course, how satisfied they are with the mobile BI solutions they work with. Here we discuss functionality and level of satisfaction, and how they affect mobile BI practices and decision making.

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CRM: Past, Present, and Future


Most customer relationship management (CRM) software users take for granted that they can track customers, send mailings, or assign requests to customer service representatives. Users today enjoy CRM systems that are highly accessible, both from a cost and technological point of view. But this was not always the case. TEC analyst Raluca Druta surveys the history and evolution of CRM with a view to defining the CRM of the future.

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