Chemical Business Intelligence Software – We’ve researched the best business intelligence software based on user popularity and key features. Compare the best BI tools in the chart below and read on to learn more about how these data analytics tools can improve your business results. For a customized set of recommendations for the best BI software for your business, try the product selection tool at the top of the page.
Business intelligence (BI) software is a suite of business analytics solutions that companies use to retrieve, analyze, and transform data into useful business insights, typically with easy-to-read visualizations such as charts, graphs, and dashboards. Examples of top BI tools include data visualization, data warehouses, interactive dashboards, and BI reporting tools. Unlike competitive intelligence that analyzes data from external sources, a BI solution pulls the internal data produced by the company into an analysis platform to gain a comprehensive view of how different parts of the company influence each other.
Chemical Business Intelligence Software
As big data—the tendency of companies to collect, store, and mine their business data—has risen in prominence, so has the popularity of BI software. Businesses are generating, tracking and compiling business data on an unprecedented scale. The ability to integrate cloud software directly with proprietary systems has further increased the need to combine multiple data sources and leverage data preparation tools. But all that data is nothing if we don’t understand it and use it to improve business results.
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In order to make informed choices, companies need to base their decisions on evidence. The mountains of data that companies and their customers produce contain evidence of buying patterns and market trends. By aggregating, standardizing, and analyzing this data, companies can better understand their customers, better forecast revenue growth, and better protect themselves from business problems.
Business information has traditionally come in the form of quarterly or annual reports reflecting a defined set of key performance indicators (KPIs), but today’s BI reporting software is supported by data analytics tools that run continuously and at the speed of light. This knowledge can help a business choose a course of action in minutes.
BI software interprets a multitude of measurable customer and business activities and returns queries based on patterns in the data. BI takes many forms and involves several different types of technology. This comparison of business intelligence tools from software vendors breaks down the three main stages data must go through to become business intelligence and provides considerations for purchasing BI tools for businesses of all sizes.
Business intelligence tools and platforms come in many forms for different business needs. Companies looking to provide data services to business users will find that self-service BI software meets the needs of most of their users. Data visualization tools are helpful for teams involved in data analytics but may not have many additional development resources. Data warehousing tools provide an underlying infrastructure that can host and clean data before presenting it through visualizations. And BI tools provide complete dashboard tools for storing, cleaning, visualizing and publishing data.
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Data lives in many systems throughout the organization. For the most accurate analysis, companies should ensure a standard format for all data types in their systems. For example, large companies may have information about their customers in a customer relationship management (CRM) application and financial data in their enterprise resource planning (ERP) application and various other important revenue data in various cloud software applications. These separate programs may label and categorize data differently, and the company must standardize the data before analysis.
Some business intelligence platforms pull data for analysis directly from source applications via a native API connection or web hook. Other business intelligence tools require the use of a cloud data storage system to consolidate disparate data sets into a common location. Small businesses, individual departments, or individual users may find that native connectivity works well, but large companies, enterprises, and companies that generate large data sets will need a more in-depth business intelligence setup.
If they choose a centralized storage solution, companies can use a data warehouse or data center to store their business information and purchase extract, transform and load (ETL) software to facilitate the storage of big data. Alternatively, they can use a data warehousing framework such as Hadoop to manage their data.
Whether companies choose to store their data in a data warehouse, cloud database, on-premises server, or run queries on the source system, data analysis and resulting insights make the industry attractive to business users. Data analytics tools vary in sophistication, but the general method of combining large amounts of normalized data to identify patterns remains consistent across business intelligence platforms.
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Also known as “data discovery,” data mining involves automated and semi-automated data analysis to discover patterns and inconsistencies. Common correlations derived from data mining include grouping specific data sets, finding outliers in data, and establishing relationships or dependencies between different data sets.
Data mining often uncovers patterns that can be used in more sophisticated analyses, such as predictive modeling, making it an essential part of the BI process, whose growth is directly correlated with the growth of big data in companies of all sizes.
Of the standard data mining processes, the greatest benefit comes from learning association rules. By examining data to find dependencies and create correlations, an association rule can help businesses better understand how customers interact with their website, or even what factors influence their purchasing behavior.
Association rule learning was originally introduced to discover relationships between purchase data stored in supermarket point-of-sale systems. For example, if a customer bought ketchup and cheese, association rules will likely detect that the customer also bought hamburger meat. While this is a simplified example, it serves to illustrate the type of analysis that now connects incredibly complex chains of events across all kinds of industries and helps users discover connections that would otherwise be hidden.
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Perhaps one of the most exciting aspects of BI, advanced analytics features such as predictive and prescriptive analytics serve as a subset of data mining. The tools use existing datasets and algorithmic models to help companies make better business decisions.
As the name suggests, predictive analytics predicts future events based on current and historical data. By making connections between data sets, these software applications predict the probability of future events, which can give companies a huge competitive advantage.
Predictive analytics includes detailed modeling and even the fields of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), where software actually learns from past events to predict future outcomes. The three main forms of predictive analytics are predictive modeling, descriptive modeling, and decision analysis.
This type of software, the most well-known segment of predictive analytics, does what its name suggests: it makes predictions, especially for one element. Predictive models use algorithms to search for relationships between a specific unit of measurement and at least one or more characteristics associated with that unit. The goal is to find the same correlation between different data sets.
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While predictive modeling looks for a single correlation between an entity and its functions—for example, to predict the likelihood that a customer will switch insurance providers—descriptive modeling seeks to aggregate data into manageable sizes and groupings. Descriptive analytics are well suited for gathering information such as unique page views or social media mentions.
Decision analytics takes into account all the factors involved in a discrete decision. Decision analytics predicts the cascading effect of an action on all the variables involved in making that decision. In other words, decision analysis provides companies with the specific information they need to predict outcomes and act.
Data comes in three main forms: structured, semi-structured and unstructured. Unstructured data is the most common and includes text documents and other types of files that exist in a format that computers cannot easily read.
Unstructured data cannot be stored in neatly categorized sets of similarly formatted data rows or columns, making traditional data mining software impossible to analyze. However, this data is often critical to understanding business results. With so much data in unstructured form, text analytics should be key to researching the best business intelligence tools.
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Natural language processing (NLP) software, also known as text analytics software, combines large sets of unstructured data to find hidden patterns. NLP is particularly interesting for companies that work with social media. Using the right software combination of data ingestion and artificial intelligence, a company can set up rules to track keywords or phrases, such as a company’s name, to find patterns in how customers use that language. Natural language processing tools also measure customer sentiment, provide actionable insights into customer lifetime value, and learn about customer trends that can inform future product lines.
The previous two BI software applications dealt with the mechanics of a BI system: how business data is stored and how the software refines that data into meaningful intelligence. Business intelligence reporting focuses on presentation
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