Tableau published a set of articles on 2019 Business Intelligence Trends. Many are obvious. All are relevant.
- The rise of explainable AI: Think beyond using AI to using and trusting it
- Natural language humanizes data: natural conversations will make it easier to gain insights in context
- Actionable analytics put data in context
- Data collaboratives amplify social good impact: Public and private sector organizations strengthen data for good movement
- Code of ethics catch up to data: Think of GDPR
- Data management converges with modern BI platforms: Governed data curation
- Data storytelling is the new language of corporations: visualization and other elements make telling a story more important rather than a single data point
- Enterprises get smarter about analytics adoption
- Data democracy elevates the data scientist: data scientists develop soft skills to drive change
- Accelerated cloud migration fuels modern BI adoption
Now of all these, I want to comment on just a few. These are the ones I’ve seen as valid and valuable elements of these trends.
Actionable Analytics in Context
Off the top of my head, I can think of three Perficient analytics oriented projects that were VERY successful. All three had a few key elements involved in their success. Allowing users to act on the data was one element of that success. One financial services client embedded action into a risk management data portal. They made it easy to go from perceived risk to review, workflow, and actions required from their customers. In this case, the context was the application the risk analysts spent a good portion of their day in. I should also note that the process of creating this action also focused on a great user experience and in cutting down the time necessary to get to true understanding of risk.
Code of Ethics
It seems like every conversation includes some element of data security and of showing what’s necessary and no more. Of course, GDPR drives a lot of that. In my 20+ year career, I’ve seen no other law drive concern, review, and change than this. It shows how our much more connected world has to take into account rules and regulations that occur outside of our primary sphere of influence. In this case, many US based organizations with little or no foreign operations have had to adhere to this policy. I also believe that many companies see the writing on the wall and understand that it’s better to safeguard privacy now than pay a large price later.
While the primary message of data storytelling focuses on visualization, I think there’s a larger side of the story. It’s about the people telling the story. It’s also about putting the insight where it can make a difference. Whether it’s an executive about to run into a meeting with a key customer or a sales associate out on the store floor, they all need more insight to make quick decisions. So context becomes an important part of the story.
Which, for anyone who remembers high school English and the need to write for your audience, won’t be a surprise……