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Is Advanced Analytics the Next Logical Step Beyond Self-Serve Business Intelligence?

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Click to learn more about author Kartik Patel.

Many organizations have grown comfortable with their business intelligence solution, and find it difficult to justify the need for advanced analytics. The advantages of advanced analytics are numerous and those advantages are based on the ability to further improve the business, increase user adoption (and therefore user empowerment and accountability) and, best of all, improve the bottom line and the accuracy of predictions and forecasts that will dictate the success of the business in the future.

How is Advanced Analytics Different from Business Intelligence?

Put simply, business Intelligence uses historical data to reveal where the business has been, and managers can use this data to predict competitive response and discover what is changing in customer buying behavior and in sales. Advanced analytics goes beyond history by leveraging predictive analytics to give businesses insight into the future, and allows for the testing of theories and hypotheses in a risk-free environment so businesses can plan, predict and forecast for things like product pricing changes, new locations, changes in customer buying behavior, competitive response, etc.

Today’s Advanced Analytics Tools allow business users to leverage features like self-serve data preparation, smart data visualization and assisted predictive modeling. These tools allow for auto-recommendations and suggestions to guide users through the choices and options that will allow for the best visualization and produce the best predictions. Business users with average skills can explore and share data and produce reports with better, clearer results (all without the skills or knowledge of an analyst or data scientist). These augmented analytics tools use sophisticated algorithms and analytical techniques, married with natural language processing (NLP) so users can ask questions using normal human language and get results in the same way. The addition of Clickless Search Analytics makes it easier to bring advanced analytics to the organization and engage business users with full confidence in user adoption.

A comprehensive, self-serve advanced analytics solution Incorporates computational linguistics, analytical algorithms and data mining into a self-serve environment and provides an easy-to-use NLP search capability for swift, accurate data analysis. It gives the organization insight into previously hidden data so it can explore and ‘discover’ crucial patterns, trends, issues and opportunities to improve productivity and improve decision making across the organization.

The Components of Self-Serve Advanced Analytics:

Advanced analytics takes the organization and its users beyond BI tools by providing comprehensive functionality with an underpinning of sophisticated algorithms and tools in an easy-to-use environment.

  • Assisted Predictive Modeling provides predictive analytics capability assisted by auto-recommendations and auto-suggestions so users can apply predictive analytics to any use case using forecasting, regression, classification, clustering and other algorithms to analyze an infinite number of use cases and address customer targets, cross-sales opportunities, pricing, risk assessment and promotional targets and buying behavior.
  • Smart Data Visualization allows users to view and analyze data to identify a problem and clarify a root cause and to interact easily with data discovery tools and analytics software to build a view that will tell a story using guided visualization and recommended data presentation so there is no need for assistance or delays. Guided recommendations are made based on data type, volume, dimensions, patterns and nature of data.
  • Self-Serve Data Preparation allows users with average skills to perform data prep and transform, shape, reduce, combine, explore, clean sample and aggregate data without advanced skills In other words business users can perform data extraction, transformation and loading (ETL) without help – ETL for business users!

Advanced Analytics with Natural Language Processing (NLP) gives users a familiar Google-type interface to compose and enter a question using common human language, so they don’t need to scroll through menus and navigation. Search Analytics allow users to enter a search query in natural language and the system will translate the query, and return the results in natural language in an appropriate form, such as visualization, tables, numbers or descriptions.

Business markets and competition are moving much more quickly these days and predicting, planning and forecasting is more important than ever. It is also important to ensure that every team member is a real asset to the organization and can contribute their knowledge and skill with full Insight into the effects and outcome of activities and processes and the ability to correct the course and make recommendations using clear, concise information. Advanced Analytics is the logical tool to help a business optimize its investments and achieve its goals.

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