SOURCE: Information Builders

Information Builders

January 14, 2010 13:26 ET

Information Builders Urges Enterprises to Look Outside the Traditional Boundaries of BI

Key 2010 Priority for CIOs Should Be Identifying New Uses and Users for BI

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - January 14, 2010) - With the concept of "customer-facing BI," Information Builders is urging enterprises to move business intelligence (BI) assets from the back office to the front office -- and ultimately into the hands of workers and customers.

Everyone Makes Decisions

Information Builders believes companies currently use BI mostly for their back-office reporting needs, which are driven by power users. However, using BI in this way, while valuable, has less of an impact on ROI than a self-service application, which distributes operational information to customers or larger numbers of company staff. At worst, enterprises are throwing away part of their financial investment by not leveraging BI's new capabilities of scaling to larger deployments and more sophisticated information systems.

"The time is now for enterprises to think beyond the classic analytical application of BI for a few back-office analysts," said Kevin Quinn, vice president of product marketing at Information Builders. "Enterprises, whether in the public or private sector, should envision how the wide distribution of data to customers, partners, and the public could have an even greater effect on the bottom line in 2010."

Success Stories

Information Builders points to the following companies that have realized that the information they have stored in their databases, data warehouses, and transaction applications is not only vital to the analysts within their organizations, but also to the customers, partners, and other third-party stakeholders outside their businesses.

According to many of the visionaries within these companies, information consumers simply want to submit simple queries and receive answers that are relevant and in context to their day-to-day activities.

-- Mount Sinai Medical Center has standardized on WebFOCUS for all of its reporting needs with new BI dashboard and self-service analytic applications at the front lines. The new BI and performance management environment will help physicians deliver high-quality care, while adhering to institution-wide cost and performance standards.

-- Levy Home Entertainment uses WebFOCUS to directly access data in IBM AS/400-based business applications to avoid the expense of developing and managing an enterprise data warehouse. With intuitive dashboards and easy-to-use reports at their fingertips, managers are cutting supply-chain costs, tightening up inefficiencies, and providing enhanced services to national retailers like Target, Wal-Mart, and Toys 'R Us.

-- Plus Relocation Services uses its BI environment to help clients create better relocation packages, keep track of expenses, and stay on budget throughout the year. Plus Relocation also uses WebFOCUS to create an operational reporting system that helps employees communicate more effectively with customers about the costs and potential issues associated with relocation activities. More than 100 corporate clients rely on InformAgility to help to move over 3,000 people around the world each year, with more than 75 internal users depending on WebFOCUS for reporting and analysis functions.

-- Scottish and Southern Energy enhances customer service while cutting support costs using a self-service portal built on WebFOCUS. Known as the Business Energy Centre (BEC), the Web site gives SSEs 420,000 corporate customers online access to day-plus-one billing and usage data dynamically updated every 24 hours.

-- Walsworth Publishing offers a unique information system, internal dashboards, and reports for sales, manufacturing, and finance personnel. Walsworth helps students preserve memories via a Web-based BI system, which tracks and organizes pages submitted electronically throughout the year. As a result, data such as the status of printing jobs, proofs, and deadlines can now be accessed electronically, enabling students to monitor page submissions, streamline administration, reduce printing costs, and review page proofs.

Bottom Line Benefits

"Given the ongoing change in the type of consumer and business customer interactions, more enterprises are transforming the way they share data with customers," said Dan Vesset, program vice president of Business Analytics at IDC. "Our market research shows that sharing information from a BI solution with customers not only provides a value-added service, but also helps in creating stronger and longer lasting relationships."

To find out more about looking outside the traditional boundaries of BI, visit our Web site to view the white paper: "The World's Best Business Intelligence Applications: Customer-Facing, Revenue-Generating BI."

About Information Builders

Information Builders' award-winning combination of business intelligence and enterprise integration software has been providing innovative solutions to more than 12,000 customers for the past 30 years. WebFOCUS is the world's most widely utilized business intelligence platform. It provides the security, scalability, and flexibility needed at every level of global extended enterprises. Its simplicity helps create executive, analytical, and operational applications that reach dozens to millions of users. Information Builders' iWay Software suite provides state of the art, multi-purpose, pre-built integration components that address all SOA, application, data and information management requirements. Its integration adapters have been adopted by the leading software platform providers. Information Builders also offers solutions in the performance management, business activity monitoring, and enterprise search markets. The company's comprehensive enterprise product offerings give Information Builders' customers the ability to grow and innovate according to their needs.

Information Builders' customers include most of the Fortune 100 and U.S. federal government agencies. Headquartered in New York City with 90 offices worldwide, the company employs 1,450 people and has more than 350 business partners. More information is available at

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