Assessing Your Business Intelligence Portfolio

Posted by Karthikeyan Sankaran
February 28th, 2012

Business Intelligence and Analytics has assumed many different dimensions and has a very wide scope in an organization. Mindmap showing the complete canvas of BI is available at – Adding to the complexity is the plethora of new trends taking place in the BI landscape, that it becomes difficult for enterprises to assess their current BI portfolio and plan for new initiatives in the future.

This blog post is aimed at providing a simple way for practitioners to identify the current scope of BI in their organizations at a high level, so that further drill-down into the details are feasible. We, in Hexaware BI practice, have identified 5 primary focus areas as shown in the table below:

Primary Focus Areas Coverage (Indicative and Not Exhaustive)
Data and Information Management Data Management includes Data Integration, MDM, Data Architecture, Modeling, Databases (Row, Column, Hybrid), Appliances, Big Data, BI with SOA, Types of data (Social Media, Unstructured, Public data)etc.
Information Delivery Reporting, Dashboarding, Visualization, Mobility, Cloud, Mashups, In-memory tools etc.
Industry Centered Packaged Applications Packaged BI Applications that comes out of the box – This can be specific to a domain (Insurance, Airlines, Banking, etc.) or can be anchored on business processes applicable across industries, such as Financial Analytics, Human Resources, Supply Chain etc.
Advanced Analytics Data Mining & Predictive Analytics
Text Analytics
Performance Management Strategic Planning

Financial Planning & Budgeting
Financial Consolidation

Regulatory Reporting

Balanced Scorecard and Strategy Maps

Each of the 5 focus could be in various stages of maturity and at a fundamental level can be divided into 3 categories:

Maturity Categories Description
Establish Initial stages where the intent is to establish a business case and strategy around developing a focus area. This typically involves a consulting exercise to arrive at the future state and also articulate the benefits of that future state. Hexaware’s BI Consulting offerings are available at this link –
Enhance / Transform In this stage, the particular focus area is being continuously Enhanced (to provide increased value to stakeholders) or Transformed (due to business imperatives). All engineering activities, viz. development of new datawarehouses, data marts, ODS, etc. happen at this stage.
Maintain / Augment Existing environment has to be maintained so that it provides repeatable value to business users. Typically in a mature BI environment, enhancements to the BI landscape and maintenance of existing systems happed concurrently (in parallel)

5 (Five) Primary Focus with 3 Maturity Stages, provide us 15 cells. Each of the cells should indicate specific initiatives taken up within the organization. Though some overlap among the 15 cells is inevitable, this matrix provides a simple yet powerful way to assess your BI landscape.

We would like to hear your views and best practices in assessing your BI portfolio. Please do send your feedback. Thanks for reading.

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