Business Intelligence (BI) systems were originally targeted primarily at large enterprises with tons of data. As BI technology improved, it started to become more accessible to small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), who started using BI systems to answer many of the same business questions as their larger, enterprise cousins. After all, business is business: Whether … Continue reading The Differences Between BI for Enterprises and SMBs
In my experience, SQL Server is often one of the most least-upgraded components in an enterprise. You may think your company will never get off of Windows XP, but odds are you have several versions of SQL Server floating around, with no plans to upgrade them. After all, it’s often easier just to leave existing … Continue reading Benefits in Migrating Your BI Solution to a Newer Version of SQL Server
Many small- and medium-sized businesses choose to go with Business Intelligence (BI) solutions that are at least partly pre-built. That means that the biggest single factor in the system’s performance – the database schema – is often already decided and can’t readily be changed. The benefit of that approach is that you’re not paying for … Continue reading Three Tips on Choosing the Hardware for Your BI Solution
As more and more small-to-medium-sized businesses (SMBs) investigate and adopt Business Intelligence (BI) solutions, one question eventually gets asked: Can we virtualize this thing? Businesses are increasingly leveraging virtualization to reduce the number of physical servers they have to maintain, to provide better availability, to enable fault tolerance and disaster recovery, and much more. BI … Continue reading Are BI Solutions Compatible with Virtualization?
No matter how well-designed and –build a business intelligence (BI) system is, it’s always possible that your workload will exceed its capabilities, and you’ll end up being dissatisfied with its performance. In those cases, what can you do? Your options depend a lot on the underlying database and analysis engine; for this article, we’ll assume … Continue reading Using SQL Server Analysis Services for poorly-performing BI Systems
Business Intelligence (BI) systems can take a lot of computing horsepower, and most organizations try to deploy as much horsepower as possible when they implement a BI solution. Unfortunately, BI is one of those things that makes its users want more. More reports. More dashboards. More data. And all that “more” means you’ll eventually need … Continue reading Three Ways to Scale Your Existing BI Business Intelligence System
I’ve recently been working with a number of small- and medium-sized businesses that are preparing to jump aboard the decision support bandwagon. Several of them have been asking me questions that reveal the enormous amount of confusion in the decision support industry, such as, “do we need a data warehouse, or should we buy a … Continue reading Data Warehouse or Business Intelligence BI Solution – or Both?
Small- to Medium-Sized Businesses (SMBs) enjoy a growing marketplace for packaged, SMB-focused business intelligence (BI) solutions. From all-in-one solutions that you host on your own server to Software as a Service (SaaS) cloud-based solutions that you just sign up for, the options grow every day. The lessons that huge enterprises have learned from BI over … Continue reading Top 5 Selection Criteria for Packaged BI Systems
Do you really need to buy a business intelligence solution in order to get business intelligence? Maybe not. If you’ve got more or less all of your data in the latest version of SQL Server, and you’re using the latest versions of Office and SharePoint, you’d be surprised what you can cobble together on your … Continue reading Business Intelligence (BI) solution: SQL Server, Office, and SharePoint
As both Business Intelligence and Cloud Computing continue to be the marketing buzzwords of our day, it’s inevitable that the two would eventually come together. An increasing number of vendors are offering cloud-based business intelligence solutions, often targeting them squarely at the small- to medium-sized business (SMB). Whatever you think of “the cloud,” BI from … Continue reading Business Intelligence (BI) from the Cloud: Feasible or Fantasy?