The Data Warehousing Institute World Conference – Spring 2002 was held in San Diego, California from May 12-17. 550 attendees were registered for the conference which covered all aspects of business intelligence and data warehousing. A new addition to the conference was a special Business Intelligence Strategies program for senior BI professionals.

The themes of each session were under the umbrella topic of business intelligence and included business performance management, real-time analytics, portals, CRM and customer intelligence. Here are some salient points from each of the speakers: Howard Dresner, vice president and research director at Gartner, discussed ways to use business intelligence to help make the data make sense. He explained the path to BI enlightenment and concluded that BI is critical for organizational survival and success. He advised that organizations derive benefit from BI through the analytic applications area that is currently evolving and predicted that the BI market will be turbulent through 2001.

Henry Morris, vice president of Applications and Information Access for IDC, discussed business performance management vs. measurement. He talked about the implementation challenges of balanced scorecards and the need for standards in this area. He stated that the key to improved ROI success is linking analytics to the operations systems and said the best way to get started is to identify key business objectives and establish metrics to measure progress in these areas. His final advice was measure, evaluate and then refine.

Picking the right architecture, tools and applications for business performance management (BPM) and customer intelligence was the subject of independent industry analyst Philip Russom’s sessions. He determined software categories for BPM and customer intelligence and listed vendors in their respective categories as well as presented a competitive landscape of BI tools for both BPM and customer intelligence.

The CRM focus was presentated by Jill Dyche of Baseline Consulting. She observed that the data warehouse affects operations with no cultural change, but that is not true for CRM. CRM mandates business process change – a change in the way the organization views the customers is necessary in order to succeed. Another interesting point was her belief that funding for the data warehouse will increase as CRM increases, that one is directly tied to the other.

Colin White, president of DataBase Associates, followed her with a presentation on real-time intelligent business. He opened stating the fact that current BI systems are passive and complex, but integrated actionable BI is obtainable. He then talked about the necessity of measuring and managing this data through an enterprise portal. This allows for and integrated, personalized and secure Web-based interface to information, applications and collaborative services.

You can find more information posted on The Data Warehousing Institute Web site at www.tdwi.org.

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