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Mashups for Business Intelligence Explained

        posted by , December 07, 2011

The business intelligence market has changed.

Business users (frustrated with the cost, time to market and constraints of traditional BI tools) are bypassing IT and making their own purchases. A new breed of BI vendor has emerged and taken a big chunk of the BI market: BI discovery tools.

BI discovery tool vendors directly target sales and marketing to business users. The key message coming from these vendors is clear — business users can deploy and manage BI tools without help from IT.

What about data?

BI discovery tools allow business users self-serve access to business intelligence, analytics and forecasting. The only catch — BI tools require access to data.

The solution: self-serve mashup tools that allow business users to map business data and create data services.

Such tools are very light touch for IT. In many cases the business just needs to know how to connect to existing data repositories.

The Enterprise Risks of Self-Service BI and Mashups

In many cases BI discovery tools represent a faster, cheaper way for users to access business intelligence and analytics. However, this is often at the expense of the architectural soundness of the solution.

Data discovery BI tools typically take copies of enterprise data. In some cases they may be installed on a desktop or a third party cloud.

The use of this data can proliferate with time. Business users may use self-serve mashups and BI tools for critical business processes. This can expose organizations to business risks that may include:

data leakage

intellectual property theft


security incidents

disruption of business operations

disaster recovery challenges

legal and regulatory penalties

damage to reputation

expensive future projects to address security, data quality and business process issues

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