It's no surprise that business intelligence (BI) is top of the list again for CIOs. More visibility into operations, more real-time information, more knowledgeable employees - these are all critical to success. But leading organizations should not stop there. As business operations become increasingly more complex in the global environment, enterprises require enhanced BI at the deepest level - embedded within essential business processes. How is this accomplished? By combining BI with process or workflow design tools, you can create and implement "smarter" business processes that not only monitor and display information, but also anticipate the need for decision-making and supply just the right information to support those decisions during real-time operations. This is known as process-driven BI.If you analyze a typical business process, you will find that, fundamentally, business interaction is about events that occur and how businesses respond to such events. For example, a customer calls with an inquiry. A shipment is received. An order is placed. These are but a few of the thousands of events occurring every day within a typical enterprise. How well these events are handled is a true measure of business efficiency and customer satisfaction.

For example, how intelligently a business responds to the arrival of a shipment depends on many factors. Is the shipment on time, early, or late? Is the quantity correct? Does the shipment require special handling or packaging? Who should be notified about the shipment? Should payment be authorized or adjusted because something was missing from the order? In this simplistic example, an event called "shipment arrival" can trigger different responses that involve intelligent decision-making based on a variety of conditions.

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