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Posted by Teigen Enhorning

March 31, 2020


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7 Most Impactful Business Intelligence Trends for 2020

As the world struggles to cope with COVID-19, government and businesses are increasingly making use of these advancements in BI (business intelligence) to provide timely and accurate information to communities. 

2020 is coming to a close and there have been plenty of advancements in BI. Here are 7 trends that we believe have had the most meaningful impact on the BI world in 2020. 

Data Collection Grows Through NLP

NLP (Natural Language Processing) lets AI systems process language as a human would. It is also referred to as conversational analytics and it comes in many forms. Spoken words can be translated and or converted into data. Text can be interpreted or translated in a way that’s closer to how humans interact. Programs can interpret a natural form of question and form responses close to the natural sounding language a human would use.

The collection of data points dramatically increases through NLP, since language can be converted into data. Locating data is also much easier as programs learn to interpret requests for data within storage programs. With such potential for increases in data collection and interpretation it’s no wonder NLP is a big area of focus in 2020.

Advances in AI Transparency

Artificial Intelligence systems continue to grow and impact the BI world. With so many businesses using AI systems to help with decision making, a need for transparency has developed. When something goes wrong, businesses want to be able to learn from those mistakes, which would be a lot easier if AI systems could explain what’s going on behind the scenes.

With the ability to suggest actions related to data, business leaders are demanding AI systems become more credible as well. People want to be able to trust AI systems so they can feel more confident about conclusions drawn from automated processes. This demand has led to Explainable AI, where we expect to see AI systems begin to formulate logical reasoning for what leads to their suggested actions. With such clear benefits to BI we can expect companies to continue to race to adopt AI systems. 

Increased Accessibility Through Augmented Analytics

Augmented analytics uses machine learning and NLP to improve data management performance. Data analytics software with augmented analytics interacts with data as humans would, but on a large scale. Augmented analytics augments human intelligence and provides contextual awareness. AI-assisted tools can identify meaningful relationships between core metrics and present data insights in a simple, easy-to-read manner.

The benefit of using augmented analytics is that more people in the organization can use the analytics program, even if they don’t have a computer science or high-level mathematics background. Imagine a digital assistant allowing production workers to use voice commands to perform analytics functions or manage their business intelligence dashboard. So, with augmented analytics on the rise, many BI platforms could become more user-friendly in 2020.

According to Gartner, augmented analytics is one of the top data analytics trends to watch out for in 2020. With data analytics inherently linked to business intelligence, we can expect growth in augmented analytics to have an impact on BI platforms.

Data Storytelling Gains Steam

Forbes magazine refers to data storytelling as one of the “last mile skills that help convert insights into actions”. Data needs to be converted into an easy to understand format that anyone can follow. Modern data visualization tools make data storytelling easier and more effective. Tableau’s Story Points feature provides a framework to guide you through data visualizations revealing the information you need to make smart decisions.

Data storytelling has been at the forefront of data science as a result of the ongoing need to express the importance of the information at hand to people that may not understand the nuances of data analytics. We can expect data-storytelling concepts to be incorporated as AI systems look to use NLP to interact with those interested in the findings. In congruence with AI transparency, business leaders are demanding more from AI systems. Combining data-storytelling concepts with NLP seems a clear way to deliver on the demand to improve how AI systems report their findings.

Increasing Focus on Security

Consumers are now fully aware of the value of their personal information. As a result, many are skeptical about sharing their details online. In the wake of increased cyberattacks, database security is now a priority for all organizations.

Cyberattacks have left millions exposed. Unwelcomed media exposure continues to cause major trust issues between companies and their customers. Not to mention huge market value drops and depleted resources. With such potential for disaster it’s no wonder companies are taking affirmative action to mitigate these risks.

The healthcare and financial industries have been targeted heavily, but the threat extends to small businesses as well. We can expect attention to security to continue to move up the list as a major focus in 2020.

Connected Cloud Implementation

Data models, data sources, computing power, data storage, and analytics models, are all destined for the cloud. Almost every business tool is moving to the cloud. This leaves all businesses with no choice but to adopt cloud analytics. Working with disparate systems in the cloud brings speed, complexity, risk, and costs into the picture.

A connected cloud strategy can be challenging to adopt, but it brings with it advantages like ability to scale, mobility and flexibility. The cloud connects data streams from across all your touch-points such as video, mobile, search, and others into a single pipeline. A connected cloud reduces the strain required to manually connect different components of a stack, using complex APIs or in-house tools. With such clear benefits, the shift to the cloud can be expected to continue in 2020.

Data Governance as a Top Priority

Data governance is the foundation for managing corporate data assets. It forms the infrastructure for organization-wide data management to happen. It enables companies to deliver complete, trustworthy, secure, and understandable data.

Many Companies have institutionalized data governance programs to ensure proper organization so that they can take full advantage of their data. Companies that have not started using data governance will be forced to do so to remain compliant with new regulations. The General Data Protection and Regulation (GDPR) is coming into effect in many regions in 2020, making it more important than ever for businesses to implement proper data governance programs.

Data Governance has a major impact on strategies and operations, so it’s an obvious area to improve on. Following the rising need to make business intelligence more accurate and secure, companies will continue to give weight to data governance programs to inspire confidence among clients and shareholders in 2020.

If you’re interested in learning more about any of these trends and how they affect your business, let us know!

Wherever you are on the BI curve, we can help you move forward:

BI Strategy – Assist with the development of a BI strategy that will meet the analytics and reporting needs of your business by following the ADAPT BI framework

Optimized Dashboards – Create dashboards optimized for IPA – Insight, Performance, and Aesthetics 

BI Technologies – Recommend data management and data visualization technologies best suited for your use case

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