So I am at the Gartner BI Summit this week. Attended the opening keynote and a session on BI competency centers, both given by Bill Hostmann and Betsy Burton of Gartner. Lots of good stuff in both sessions but a couple of key points struck me:
- They identified the third stage (after Corporate Performance Management driving strategy) as "Analytics driving process optimization". This is clearly where my vision of EDM would come into play. You can use business rules to automate decisions in business processes and then use analytics to optimize these decisions and hence the processes. Other phrases that were used and that resonated with me were "in-process analytics", "user-accessible predictive analytics" and "SOA-enabled BI". All of these can be achieved with an EDM approach - see the sections in the blog on business process, SOA, BI and predictive analytics.
- There was some discussion on service providers for BI. This made me think about a concept we have been playing with of "Decision Service Providers". I haven't blogged on this yet but now I think I will. Stay tuned.
- The importance of agility and process flexibility was stated again and again. One of the key propositions of EDM is the idea of adding precision and consistency (both core BI messages) without sacrificing agility. You must be able to change a process that you are monitoring when your monitoring tells you that something is wrong. Real-time measurement should not be combined with systems that take weeks or months to change.
- Changing business processes to maximize the value of BI was identified as both a key driver for future BI success and a key barrier to this success. This is one of the reasons I feel that "operationalizing" BI requires a business rules management system to be part of the infrastructure you have. This will let you manage and improve and change the decisions that drive your processes as your CPM/BI environment tells you that you should.
Lastly they made the point that your ideas as to who is and who is not a CPM/BI vendor will change. Couldn't agree more.
More from Gartner BI over the next few days as I uncover answers to more of my questions.