Analysts at Gartner Inc. predict that business units will exert greater control over analytic applications in the coming year with emphasis on information trust and transparency. The market researcher also predicts a spread of collaborative decision-making, the rise of software-as-a-service (SaaS) and increased use of application mashups by end users.

The report echoes last week’s finding by Gartner’s EXP Group, which found continued pressure on CIOs and IT groups to deliver business value by supporting performance management and compliance initiatives in organizations.

Gartner analysts issued five predictions for 2009 and beyond:

- Through 2012, more than 35 percent of the top 5,000 global companies will regularly fail to make insightful decisions about significant changes in their business and markets: Analysts find businesses under pressure to face demands from shareholders and government, but most are underinvested in infrastructure and tools.

- By 2012, business units will control at least 40 percent of the total budget for BI: Business users have lost confidence in IT’s ability to provide information needed to make decisions, but risk creating new silos of information by working outside IT’s boundaries. "It could be a point of contention between IT and lines of business," Gartner analyst Kurt Schlegel tells Information Management. "However in most organizations, IT just doesn't have that much power so the business units will be able to do what they want."

- By 2010, 20 percent of organizations will have an industry-specific analytic application delivered via software as a service (SaaS) as a standard component of their BI portfolio: Information aggregators will use SaaS to deliver domain specific analytic applications built from industry data under security/confidentiality agreements with customers.

- In 2009, collaborative decision making will emerge as a new product category that combines social software with BI Platform capabilities: IT leaders will tap trends in social software and people’s inclination to use it to spread informal collaboration and decision-making.

- By 2012, one-third of analytic applications applied to business processes will be delivered through coarse-grained application mashups: IT leaders will create overlaid analytical insights within the graphic user interface of operational applications as vendors are slow to integrate disparate code sources. "There will be many styles of analytic and application integration," Schlegel says. The most common will probably be with a simple portal that simply puts the transactional widget next to the analytical widget on the screen." Eventually, Schlegel predicts more mashups will be overlaid on top of the application within the GUI. 

In a press release, Gartner Research VP Nigel Rayner said this year’s predictions focus on the need for BI and performance management to deliver greater business value. More information on Gartner’s report, “Predicts 2009: Business Intelligence and Performance Management Will Deliver Greater Business Value,” is available here.

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