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Business intelligence consolidation can reduce complexity, costs

In part one of this two-part podcast, TDWI's Wayne Eckerson reveals his tips for consolidating and standardizing business intelligence (BI) systems, including why so many organizations use multiple BI systems in the first place.

A recent analyst report found that just under half of all enterprises run between three and five business intelligence (BI) systems or tools throughout the organization. Some companies have even more – upwards of six, seven, even 10 BI systems.

While multiple BI systems may keep users happy, they create an added burden for IT staffs who must manage all the disparate apps. Plus, maintenance and licensing costs can quickly add up to big bucks.

This podcast is part of a two-part series on consolidating BI systems. Listen to part two:
Beware of business intelligence users when planning for BI consolidation

 Many companies, in an effort to reduce costs and complexity, are considering consolidating or standardizing to one or two BI systems. But the task is not as easy as it sounds. In addition to the technical implications, there are personal and political considerations too.

To help enterprises and IT departments understand the implications of consolidating BI systems and for tips for getting started, recently sat down with Wayne Eckerson, director of research services at TDWI.

In this 8-minute podcast, part one of two, appropriate for both business and IT professionals, listeners will:

  • Learn why so many organizations use multiple BI systems in the first place (1:35).
  • Find out the benefits and drawbacks of multiple BI systems, including high maintenance costs and complex management tasks (2:40).
  • Learn why standardizing underlying data sources is just as important as standardizing BI systems (5:34).
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Tips for a successful business intelligence consolidation project (part one)

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About the speaker: Wayne W. Eckerson is director of research and services at TDWI. He has 17 years of experience in the IT industry and has covered data warehousing and BI issues since 1995. Eckerson is the author of many in-depth reports, a columnist for several business and technology magazines, and a noted speaker and consultant in the BI industry. His book, titled Performance Dashboards: Measuring, Monitoring, and Managing Your Business, was published by John Wiley & Sons in October 2005.


For more business intelligence software news and advice:

Find out who landed in Gartner's recent Magic Quadrant report on business intelligence.

Read why self-service business intelligence tools aren't as popular as vendors would like.

Find out how interactive applications are giving open source business intelligence a boost.

Read about BJ's effort to overhaul its business intelligence capabilities.

Get expert forecasts for the business intelligence market in 2009.

Dig Deeper on Business intelligence best practices

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