Remember the Pepsi challenge? Although not quite the same, there are some similarities between the famous soda challenge and the business intelligence challenge:

In the Pepsi challenge, it's Coke versus Pepsi. In the business intelligence (BI) challenge, it's one tool versus another, one business function versus another, an out-of-the-box solution versus a custom solution. Although the BI challenge is more involved, you don't need to make all the decisions at once. BI is an ongoing, iterative process that enhances and enriches information delivery. It is not a new "science." It is only the integration of information pockets that is new. Over time, organizations have tried to standardize extract, transform and load (ETL), database and reporting tools. They've implemented finance and human resources decision-support applications to capitalize on the data volumes collected in their own transaction applications, their enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications or in those that they've purchased. It's now time to tie all the information together to generate 360º insight. This insight allows you to understand the relationship of costs to employees, profitability to customers and products, marketing strategies to sales success rates and much more.

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