I'm back from my 5th year at the Pacific Northwest Business Intelligence Summit and what a summit it was. It's very difficult to put it into a category. Representatives from HP, IBM, Microsoft, SAP, Teradata, Composite Software, InfoCentricity, DataFlux, PivotLink, Eyeris and ParAccel were on hand along with media coverage from the B-eye-network to visit with Claudia Imhoff, Jill Dyche, Colin White and myself. As always, it was a stimulating and educational experience, as well as fun. Put on by our friend Scott Humphrey and taking place at the historic Weasku Inn in Medford, OR on the Rogue River, the environment lent itself to open discussion and idea generation.
The 4 of us took up relevant topics and lead discussions. Jill did CRM, Claudia did SaaS, Colin did operational business intelligence and I did information management leadership. Podcasts from each vendor plus the topic introductions are available here at the network.
As for operational business intelligence, I observed that we (people of traditional BI legacy) are calling it BI, but it can be quite different. As Colin pointed out, there's real-time traditional BI, which is arguably OBI and then there's BI with business processes as the end user, which is where BI is going. That's real OBI. Eventually we may ask "If I have lots of OBI, why do I need other BI?'. It's a process-driven paradigm shift.
We had a strong vendor in EII, an enabler of OBI, represented - Composite Software. A good way to think about EII in this context today is it is for requirements that are wide, but not deep.
Software as a Service is an important part of BI's future. It was surprising to sit back and look at the list of players in that market now. As a testament to its progress, it seems some clients are at the point of discussing bringing SaaS solutions in-house and there was quite a bit of discussion about that.
CRM is really about differentiating customers based on behavior and preferences and therefore differentiating treatment. The rise of social networking was discussed as a significant new medium to include in CRM efforts. The CRM example used was the Jack Daniel's club membership, which some of group were members of.
And, as for leadership, well, I just thought it was high time to tackle this important subject in context of information management and leadership. We used this subject to also talk about the state of IT (decentralizing again, patchwork architectures, lots of money to maintenance, etc.)
Posted August 11, 2008 10:20 AM
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