The Value of Monitoring Business Intelligence Systems

Enterprise data is among the most valuable resources available to an organization’s decision-makers. Using it effectively can be a deciding factor in keeping up with market forces and gaining an edge over competing entities. Ignoring the story behind the data can result in a poorly run company that watches its market share wither away.

The concept of using information about your business to make it better is nothing new. Merchants have traditionally taken the virtual pulse of their customers to identify products that interest them and to determine new ways to attract a wider audience. 21st Century companies have the advantage of technological resources that collect and process vast amounts of data that dwarf what was available to businesses in the past.

What is Business Intelligence?

The term Business Intelligence (BI) refers to the computer systems and software tools an enterprise uses to conduct strategic planning. These systems are used to collect, store, and analyze an organization’s data assets to assist in making business decisions. Multiple data streams such as those from social media and the Internet of Things (IoT) contribute to the raw materials that feed BI systems.

SQL Server is a popular database platform that has features that turn it into a powerful BI tool. Three major components comprise the BI capabilities of SQL Server.

  • SQL Server Analytic Services (SSAS) provides online analytic processing (OLAP) of data collected from various sources. It can help discover data patterns that are not immediately apparent through other data mining techniques.

  • SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) gives users a set of tools and services that are used to create, deploy, and manage paginated and mobile reports. These tools are designed to deliver informative reports to decision-makers on any type of device.

  • SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) is a platform designed to facilitate data integration with other workflow applications. Teams can build enterprise-level data integration and data transformation solutions without writing a single line of code.

Benefits of Business Intelligence

The goal of implementing BI systems in an IT environment is to help find ways to improve the business. BI can be used to monitor market trends, adapt to evolving conditions, and improve overall decision-making throughout the enterprise. Here are some specific benefits organizations can enjoy with BI systems.

Faster and more accurate reporting - Through the use of templates and customized reporting, real-time data can be made available to decision-makers in a variety of formats. Accessing BI dashboards on mobile devices can give management the edge it needs when negotiating a new deal.

Enhanced data quality - BI software allows companies to get a full picture of their business by monitoring data from a wide range of sources.

Increased customer satisfaction - BI helps companies understand customer behavior and patterns which improves the way the enterprise interacts with them. This can be vitally important in retaining current clients as well as attracting new ones.

Improved decision-making - Providing the right stakeholders with timely and reliable information leads to better decisions being made. The ability to quickly respond to changing market conditions can be instrumental in maintaining the organization’s fiscal health.

Identifying market trends - Many businesses thrive on competition and being the first to identify the next big thing can make or break a company. BI systems can help wade through the noise and uncover the information that points a business in the right direction to capitalize on market forces.

Tools for Maintaining Business Intelligence Systems

To make efficient use of the business intelligence available in their SQL Servers, the systems must be observed and maintained. IDERA’S SQL BI Manager monitors the business intelligence systems running in your SQL Server environment to provide optimal information to their users.

SQL BI Manager runs on physical machines and virtual cloud instances running Microsoft Windows. It supports monitoring SQL Server versions from 2008 through 2017 whether they are on cloud virtual machines or hardware in your data center. Browser support is provided for Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Chrome, and Firefox.

With SQL BI Manager you can perform comprehensive monitoring of the health of your SSAS, SSRS, and SSIS systems. Obtain detailed SSAS performance metrics to ensure that the analysis service is running efficiently. Keep tabs on reporting including which reports failed to run and how they impact SQL Server resources.

All this power is available in a web-based dashboard that allows your team to access the tool from anywhere. They can easily identify issues and view alerts to keep BI systems performing effectively. SQL BI Manager is a great addition to an SQL Server environment that is used to generate business intelligence for its organization.