The Hitchhiker's Guide to BI and Analytics

As IT leaders, there usually comes a time when we are called to a meeting with the senior executive of the organization to discuss business analytics (BA) or business intelligence (BI). This usually occurs the week after said senior executive has been to a conference and saw a shiny dashboard with dials, graphs and 'drill down data.'

With the executive's face glowing, he or she says: "this shouldn't be hard, the speaker said [insert product name here] can connect to all our data and tell us what we need to know!" The glow soon fades when you have to explain the reality that the project may be a bit more complicated than that.

You would also be tempted to remind that same executive that you have been asking for funding for the BA/BI initiative outlined in your strategic plan, but you realize your timing might not be the most appropriate. You do have a BA/BI strategy, right? The dollar figure for your initiative was much higher than the cost of the 'dashboard' the executive was so dazzled by.  You have some work to do to bring reality into the conversation.


How not to Fail at Implementing Cloud Computing

Photo: www.flickr.com/photos/kwpashuk

Today’s IT environment is about anytime/anywhere access to practically anything on any device.  You can work from anywhere, and blend your professional, personal and private information into one seamless interface.  And the magic sauce that connects you and brings it all together is…. you know it… the ‘Cloud’.

At least that’s what the media and the vendor community would have us believe.

But we are IT people. We know better.  We know that you just can’t connect all the information together in a mishmash muddle and expect it to work.  Add onto that authentication, controlling access to sensitive or confidential data, compliance and privacy issues, never mind the terabytes of legacy systems that just do not talk to any other system and you know that the dream world described above is just that, a dream world.

We have launched ourselves on a crusade to educate the masses, to bring them to a realization of truth and restore control in our world.

The problem is that the people we support believe it’s real… and possible… and it’s your job be make it so.

Some of the people that believe it are also the ones who sign our paycheques.

So where does that leave you?